Donner Memorial State Park Visitor Center
Whether you are visiting or a Tahoe local, the new museum at the Donner Memorial State Park is an educational, interesting and beautiful way to spend the afternoon.
The center’s theme is "Crossing Barriers Changing Lives". Exhibits include displays focused on the Donner Party, regional Native American history, construction of the Transcontinental Railroad through the Sierra by the Chinese workers, and development of roadways over Donner Pass. While it may seem like a lot to take in, the information is well laid out with short video clips to watch based on each topic. It is really amazing what has happened throughout history in this region.
Surrounding the museum you will find the very large Pioneer Monument and sites where the pioneers camped when trapped by the treacherous winter. The monument is dedicated to the pioneers who crossed the Sierra on their way west in 1846-47.
The Donner Party-legendary pioneers who fell victim to the harsh Sierra Nevada winter. Sadly, only 49 of the 89 members survived. The base of the monument is 22 feet tall marking the immense amount of snowfall from that winter.
Just across the parking lot from the monument you will find the start of a short 1/2 mile nature loop weaving through the nearby stream. Trail markers will point out several trees and other plants native to the area. This is an easy place to enjoy a mild fall day and soak up all that you have learned about the rich history that surrounds you.
Donner Memorial State Park Visitor CenterOpen 9am – 4pm
Entry is free, parking is $8/day
c 530 277 1012