Lower Prey Meadows
Joe having his early morning coffee and making fun of Hoss, at Lower Prey Meadows, during the making of "Kingdom Of Fear", in the summer of 1968.
Lower Prey Meadows is a lovely alpine meadow, with wildflowers, some two
miles north from Spooner Lake, where many episodes of Bonanza were filmed
at for almost a decade in its main run.
The meadow is somewhat narrow in length, and is creek-fed all the way
through it, with Ponderosa pines dotting the mountainsides. The sloping
sides of the meadows are dotted with the pale green Nevada sagebrush
that only grows in a few parts around the lake. The views of the lake are
somewhat filtered, since the meadows are slightly below the rim of trees
that rise up from the lakeshore. The Tahoe rim can be seen coming down on
the left side of the meadows and stretching around to the California
side of the lake in some episodes. Beginning with 1961-62's third
season, portions of the meadows were used and edited in with other Lake
Tahoe locales, as seen in season four's "The First Born". Riding shots
and ride-throughs were filmed of the cast, occasional guest stars, creek
crossings, scenery shots, and stagecoach shots were all made here, and a
herd of cattle was always visible behind the creek. These lovely shots
lasted for many years, and in the later years new footage was filmed, in
the ninth and tenth years of the series, seen in some episodes such as
"Desperate Passage", "Salute To Yesterday", and "Kingdom Of Fear".
Ben riding through Lower Prey Meadows, while Joe, Hoss, and Candy are having morning breakfast in, "Kingdom
DIRECTIONS From South Lake Tahoe: Drive on Highway 50 past Stateline into Nevada and continue on the
50, as it climbs away from the Tahoe basin, and you will see signs
directing you to State Route 28. Turn left on SR 28 north and drive past
Spooner Lake, by two miles. After two miles has elapsed, on the left side
of the road, you will see a large iron gate, that is locked. Turn left off
the road and do not block the gate, park away from it. The service road
into the meadows you will walk straight on in and stay on the left fork
of the dirt road, where the road forks off to the right, which will take
hikers to some concealed coves off the lakeshore, some 1.5 miles
away. Lower Prey Meadows will come into view.
From Incline Village: Take State Route 28 from Incline Village, and drive south 9
miles, past Sand Harbor until the road takes you away from the
lakeshore. As you you approach Spooner Lake, you will see a large, iron
gate that is locked on the right side of the road. Park and do not block
the gate, and you can walk it in.
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