Fun scenic drive this weekend—we went to Lake Tahoe on highway 50, from Sacramento to South Lake Tahoe. The weather was warm so there was much snow melting, feeding waterfalls and streams.

Something new: the Heavenly Gondolas just a few blocks from the casinos. Previously, you had to drive in from the main street (highway 89) to find Heavenly. Since I wasn’t there to ski, I never bothered driving to Heavenly before, but now that it’s on the main street, I might take their gondolas to the top just for sightseeing. They cost $20 for a round trip (per person) and take you from the lake level (6000 feet) to the top of the mountain (9200 feet).

This is the first time I went up to Tahoe and back in one tank of gas. 12.2 gallons, 450 miles. Driving at 45–55 mph (on highway 50) really helps with gas mileage. If we hadn’t used the air conditioner and if we had waited until the tank was empty, we could’ve made 500 miles on one tank of gas. (No, I don’t have a hybrid; I have a 10 year old Saturn SL2.)

Total cost of the day trip: $49 = $25 for gas, $19 for food and snacks, $5 for slot machines.