Every generation enhances society through the legacy it leaves behind.
The Greatest Generation, for example, helped build the modern world with an incredible work ethic, sense of community and unwavering belief in freedom and democracy (there’s a reason they’re the GOATs, after all). Even baby boomers imparted dramatic social change and pushed the limits of wealth and athletic achievement.
Millennials, on the other hand, have given the world … hashtags and the term YOLO. That’s right, the best Millennials have repurposed a symbol that used to mean “number” and made a credo of an awful acronym representing an already awful phrase.
You only live once. Both inherently, and maddeningly, true -- and an apparent excuse to act a fool.
Want to get blazed the night before a final and talk to trees instead of studying? YOLO.
Would you rather blow off student loan debt and turn down a great job so you can “find yourself” in Europe for a year? YOLO.
Always wanted to steal a car at gunpoint to really understand the criminal mind? You get the idea.
But maybe, just maybe, those aloof, wandering weirdos with emotional dependencies on their electronic devices might actually be on to something. Couldn’t everyone stand to let loose and live on the edge from time to time?
That’s the perfect mindset if you find yourself in Northern Nevada as Lake Tahoe Is basically a melting pot for enthusiasts of the extreme, whether you’re a Millennial looking to go #YOLO in Tahoe or a baby boomer in search of a midlife crisis that doesn’t involve Affliction shirts and sequined jeans.
Here’s how to unleash your inner bad ass to the max at everyone’s favorite mountain lake.
Go all in
If you’re trying to be a bad ass, it’s generally a good rule of thumb to consider how James Bond would handle a given situation and act accordingly. Anybody can find a casino and gamble. You’re going to sport a tuxedo or little black dress and wear it unironically into one of Tahoe’s poker rooms for a night of daring at the tables.
If there happens to be a baby boomer wearing sequined jeans, don’t forget to toss him a straight-faced “nice pants, bro.”
If you hit it big: You’re already killing it in your formal wear, so you might as well find a dinner spot that matches your attire with the best food Tahoe has to offer.
Don’t miss out on a great meal somewhere like Montbleu’s Ciera Steak+Chophouse or the Sage Room steakhouse at Harveys. You can also get excellent meals with amazing lake views at Wolfdale’s Cuisine Unique, Christy Hill or Friday’s Station Steak & Seafood Grill at Harrah's. Romantics will like the stellar cuisine at the Soule Domain and Cafe Fiore.
If you went broke: Not to worry because there’s great food all over Tahoe, but this is about going extreme, right?
Get it up …
… And not at the beach. No bad ass can experience Tahoe without a parasailing adventure. You can book everything from jet skis to speedboats to party boats in Tahoe, and it’s all fun, but it’s hard to beat being pulled across the lake with a parachute at your back. Anybody can boat across the lake, but true adrenaline junkies need to fly.
Parasailing not enough? Try jumping out of an airplane. Technically you’ll have to travel to Truckee or Minden to cross this one off, but you won’t regret enjoying Tahoe’s majesty in a free fall.
Show the world what you’re made of
Now that you’ve unleashed your inner Bond, it’s time to let it all hang out -- and not in a figurative type of way.
Head to Secret Cove, take your clothes off and walk around in the company of others. Deep down, we all like being naked and looking at naked people, so why not visit somewhere you’re encouraged to do both simultaneously (without destroying your bank account)? Try not to ogle or judge and you’ll be fine.
Pro tip: do yourself a favor and make sure it’s a warm day.
Once you’ve got the high-flying shenanigans out of your system, it’s time to explore Tahoe’s depths. While pretty much everybody else enjoys the lake from the shore or surface, the true bad ass straps on scuba gear and takes the dive. Northern Nevada might not seem like a scuba diving hot spot, but several outfits offer the opportunity for you to see the lake like you’ve never seen it before.
And, really, isn’t that what being a bad ass is all about?