It might have been raining across much of Northern California, but last week’s storm brought snow to North Lake Tahoe ski resorts – more than 3.5 feet of the white stuff, making for a great ski weekend.
You just never know how these storms are going to play out. But Mother Nature cooperated and we’ve got new snow on the mountains!
With a base elevation of 8,260 feet, Mt. Rose – Ski Tahoe welcomed 45 inches of snow throughout the series of storms and has received a total of 100 inches of snowfall to date. On Donner Summit, Sugar Bowl Ski Resort at an elevation of 6,883 feet is reporting storm totals of 44 inches. Squaw Valley’s upper mountain at 8,200 feet got 42 inches of snow.
Reservations are not required, but participants should arrive early. Lesson packages can be purchased at each individual resort the day of lessons. Students should contact resorts directly for resort-specific information. Some restrictions apply. Resorts not open December 8-9 may offer a Learn to Ski Weekend later in the season.
Although you might not feel it, the weather is starting to change in North Lake Tahoe. Days are still warm, with temperatures averaging in the 60s, but nights are dropping to approximately 35 degrees. It’s the time of year that the region’s upper elevations start seeing a dusting of snow.
We’ve been reviewing all the long-range forecasts, and if Mother Nature keeps up her end, we should have above-average snowfall this winter.
That’s music to the ears of North Lake Tahoe ski resorts, many of which have been pumping millions of dollars into their ski and non-ski products to enhance the winter enthusiast’s experience.
This season marks year two of Squaw Valley’s $50 million renaissance. The improvements, unveiled for winter 2012-2013, will greatly enhance the first-time and beginner experience, the terrain park and improve the overall flow of the upper mountain.
The resort will install Big Blue Express, a new, high-speed six-pack chairlift, to replace the High Camp chairlift. The base terminal of Big Blue Express will start where the base of the High Camp lift was formerly located and will extend to the top of the ridge, providing easy access to the Shirley Lake, Solitude and Granite Chief chairlifts. The Links double chairlift will be removed and replaced with a triple chairlift call Mountain Meadow, which will be realigned to bring skiers and riders up to the ridgeline near the top of the terminals of the Solitude and Silverado lifts. Additional changes include Squaw’s three million snowmaking improvements and grooming initiatives.
Building on the $30 million recently invested at Northstar California, the resort celebrates this winter and its 40th anniversary with more glade skiing on The Backside, first-ever snow cat and backcountry tours on Sawtooth Ridge, a new Burton Riglet Park that introduces snowboarding to 3-6 year olds and EpicMix Racing that has participants comparing their race times against accomplished Olympic medalist Lindsey Vonn. Also new this season is Tavern 6330’ in the Village at Northstar with seating for up to 200. The new restaurant features American grill dishes inspired by California farm fresh ingredients served up in a cozy, tavern-esque atmosphere suitable for the whole family.
Making headlines around the country is Northstar’s new CMO, canine marketing officer, “Marsh Mellow.” The lovable three-month-old pup was abandoned at the resort last August. After a long search in which no owner was found, the resort’s marketing team adopted him. Over the last few months, Marsh Mellow has developed a following of guests who keep up to speed with his activities via the resort’s social media channels and who regularly visit the Village at Northstar to see him.
On Donner Summit, Sugar Bowl Ski Resort signed an agreement October 1 to operate Royal Gorge Cross Country Resort, America’s largest cross-country operation, which is being purchased by the Truckee Donner Land Trust, the Trust of Public Land and the Northern Sierra Partnership. The resorts are already connected by an “interconnect” trail that allows skiers to ski back and forth between the two, with plans in the works to further enhance the connection with two additional beginner-friendly routes. Sugar Bowl, who plans to invest $500,000 in Royal Gorge this season, is now offering a season pass that allows holders to downhill at Sugar Bowl and cross-country ski at Royal Gorge. Sugar Bowl pass holders can add on an unrestricted Royal Gorge pass for $149 (adult price), and can purchase an unrestricted, standalone Royal Gorge pass for $299.
Mt. Rose – Ski Tahoe, just outside of Incline Village on Highway 431, has continued to work on a multi-year forest management project in cooperation with the Nevada Division of Forestry. The project stretches from the Galena trail to the Mt. Rose Highway and involves concentrated efforts for selected thinning and the removal of dead, damaged and diseased trees with the goal of a healthier forest. Other resort projects include the realignment of the Little Mule conveyor lift and improvements to the Rosebuds teaching terrain. Decorative rock walls were added around the Main Lodge with the added perk of aiding in erosion control.
Woodward Tahoe, a world-class action sports training center and youth camp which originally opened in June, will be open seven days/week for public access and daily drop-in sessions through the winter until April 14, 2013. The 33,000-square foot indoor facility at the base of Boreal Mountain Resort on Donner Summit, offers multi-level Olympic trampolines, a Super Tramp, a concrete skate park for skateboarding and BMX biking, a pump track and skatelite ramps to foam pits for aerial ski, snowboard, BMX and skateboard training. A season pass, called the “Bunker Pass,” is available for $279 and includes eight months of access, seven days/week for two-hour sessions.
A tiny leprechaun swooped down from his rainbow and brought us a gift: SNOW.
The National Weather Service is predicting that some areas of North Lake Tahoe could receive up to 7 feet or more of snow by Sunday. So head to your favorite NLT resort lodge, enjoy an Irish Coffee and hit the slopes… or maybe that’s the other way around.
Check out all of NLT’s St. Patty’s Events taking place this Saturday:
St. Patty’s Twilight Ski, Homewood Mountain Resort Guests are invited to hit the slopes from 4-7 p.m. (after the resort typically closes) via the Quail triple chair in addition to daytime skiing and riding. The Resort is also offering commemorative St. Patrick’s Day T-shirts, green beer, corned beef and cabbage and a hidden pot o’ gold this St. Patty’s Day.
Ski Green, Mt. Rose – Ski Tahoe The resort is celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with a party including food and beverage specials, as well as the resort’s Pot O’ Gold Poker Run from 10-11:30 a.m.
St. Patrick’s Day Scavenger Hunt and Apres Party – Northstar California 1:30 – 3 pm – Join Northstar California and EpicMix for the first ever St. Patrick’s Day EpicMix Scavenger Hunt. Join fellow EpicMixers in an on-mountain scavenger hunt, compete in challenges, earn EpicMix pins, and celebrate St. Patrick’s Day! Solve riddles to unlock special EpicMix virtual pins in various locations throughout Northstar.
3:30 – 4:30 pm – After the big “hunt” head to the Lodge at Big Springs at mid-mountain for an Epic après party where each scavenger hunt participant will receive a free slice of pizza and 14 oz. beer or soda. We will also hold a raffle and celebrate green the color of St. Patrick’s Day and EpicMix in true style. Prizes will be given to most visible green outfit and best Irish-themed outfit.
BARmuda Triangle St. Patrick’s Day Celebration, Lakeside Tahoe City 4:30 pm – 2 am – Lakeside joins Jake’s on the Lake & Hacienda del Lago for a blow-out event. The fun starts at Jake’s with traditional Irish food all day (also Lunch/Café/Dinner), Happy Hour discounts 4:30-6:30 pm and live music with Mark Wilson at 6 pm. The party continues at Hacienda del Lago (upstairs) with live funk “Terraplane” 9:30 pm-2 am, and L.A. DJ Dre Tuna at Lakeside (next door) 10 pm-2 am. Bar hop to enjoy Bush-Mills Girls, music and drink specials all night at all three venues!
Jake’s On The Lake 530-583-018, Hacienda 530-581-3700, Lakeside 530-583-2000
St. Patricks Day Celebration – Alpine Meadows, Tahoe City 9 am – 5 pm – Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at Alpine! Ski the green slopes, dress in green, and search for the hidden pot of gold! They will be hosting a St. Patrick’s Day party to remember – complete with Irish food, drink specials and live music by the Nibblers.
St Patrick’s Snowshoe Search for the Pot O’ Gold 10 am – Tahoe Mountain Sports and the TRTA are teaming up for a St. Patrick’s Day celebration. There is hidden treasure buried in the snow and it’s up to you to locate each pot o’gold. This is a fun family event where everyone is a winner. Strap on your snowshoes this St. Patrick’s Day and stretch your sleuth skills. Call 775-298-0231 for more information. The event is free but registration is required.
9pm – Tickets available now. After party in the Crown Room. The Last Bluegrass co-bill was so great, the club decided to do it again with the same format. Each band will do a set and then an encore jam together. Do not miss this St. Paddy’s day throw-down.
Pot O’ Gold Hunt, Sugar Bowl Ski Resort The annual Pot O’ Gold hunt is on. Find clues scattered around the mountain which will lead you to the famous gold pot containing a Summit Sunday pass for 2012/2013!
North Lake Tahoe ski resorts are reporting up to 1.5 feet of new snow in the last 24 hours at their upper elevations… and Mother Nature isn’t done yet. NOAA (the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) is predicting a chance of snow all week with skies clearing on Friday and the weekend.
This is great news since Squaw Valley recently unveiled the resort’s newest terrain park feature, a jib pipe. It’s a hybrid feature, consisting of a banked half-pipe with a variety of rails and boxes. Epic!
Conditions will also be ideal for Diamond Peak Ski Resort, which is celebrating 2012’s extra day… Wed., Feb 29 which is Leap Year for those who missed their coffee this morning… with a $29 all-day lift ticket. Diamond Peak is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
This weekend also marks the beginning North Lake Tahoe’s SnowFest, the largest winter carnival West of the Mississippi, on Fri., March 2 and lasts through Sun., March 11. Many events are free and open to the public, including a polar bear swim, hometown parades in Tahoe City and Kings Beach and ice carving extravaganzas. And, don’t miss the official opening ceremonies Friday, March 2 at Squaw Valley with On-Mountain Fireworks and Laser Show Display.
Sugar Bowl Ski Resort will host the 4th Annual “Shred the Love” Rail Jam Sat., March 3 to raise funds and awareness for Boarding for Breast Cancer. The competition will take place in the Coldstream Terrain Park from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Entry fee is $25/person from 8:30-10 a.m.
Diamond Peak Ski Resort is hosting Celebrity Winterfest Sat., March 3, the largest fundraiser of the year for Special Olympics Northern California and Nevada, when corporate teams are paired with a Special Olympics athlete and a celebrity skier for a dual giant slalom. The event concludes Sunday, March 4 at PlungeFest, an opportunity for guests to brave Lake Tahoe’s chilly waters at the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe Beach to raise additional funds.
Last, but definitely not least, the Rahlves’ Banzai Tour. Considered the world’s premier big mountain freeskiing meets skier/boarder-cross experience, this event is becoming one of the region’s most popular spectator events. The four-stop event continues at Squaw Valley for the KT-22 Banzai (March 3-4) and concludes at Sugar Bowl with the Silver Belt Banzai (March 10-11) when event organizer and former U.S. World Cup and Olympic ski racer Daron Rahlves will compete in the “Super Final.”
We’re enjoying perfect conditions for skiing, boarding, tubing or building snowmen on the beach this week, with clear, sunny skies and highs in the 40s and lows in the 20s.
Mt. Rose – Ski Tahoe has selected Chute Gates open, including Cutthroat, Lowball, Miller Time and Beehive. Did you know the Chutes offer 1,500 feet of vertical at 40-55 degrees? Pretty epic.
Squaw Valley continues with Kid-O-Rama through Sunday, Feb. 26 with a Dance Party on Ice, Big Truck Night (the massive machinery that makes the mountain tick), S’Mores and Tubing, Kids’ Concert with Todd Wees, Family Ski Racing and Kids Crafts and Game Room in the Village.
PlumpJack Squaw Valley Inn in Olympic Valley continues its Winter Winemaker Series Thursday, February 23, 5:30-9:30 p.m., with Bardessono Vineyards. Guests can mingle with the winemaker and enjoy sips by the glass, flight or paired with PlumpJack’s special Chef’s Tasting Menu.
On Saturday, February 25, TransWorld SNOWboarding Magazine will once again host an amateur snowboarding contest at Northstar California as part of the TransWorld SNOWboarding TransAM Series – a six-stop tour hosted by the most progressive park resorts from coast to coast. This is a great spectator event and will host some of the best up and coming riders in the region.
Rideout Community Center on the West Shore hosts its popular 3rd Annual Soup & Chili Showdown Saturday, February 25, 6-8:30 p.m. Guests taste the best in North Lake Tahoe family recipes. This event is great for families.
Alpine Meadows Ski Resorthosts the Ice Bar Grand Opening Saturday, February 25 at noon. This iconic Alpine hotspot is a great place to gather with friends and soak up the sunshine. Grand Opening activities include live on-snow music and inevitable snowball battles.
Jeff McKittrick in the Red Dog area. February 13, 2012. Photo: Hank deVre at Squaw Valley.
North Lake Tahoe ski resorts are reporting up to two feet of new snow which is perfect conditions leading up to President’s Day Weekend. So check out these updates for the weekend and head on up to visit us.
Resorts and Towns’ Update: North Lake Tahoe ski resorts are offering great ski deals. Check out Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadow’sTahoe Super 2, which offers two unrestricted days of skiing and riding at either resort for just $49 per day. This is a limited time offer, available through Friday, February 17.
The Rat Pack is coming home! The Cal Neva Resort & Spa in Crystal Bay, a historic playground for legendary singer and business operator Frank Sinatra and friends, is hosting “The Rat Pack: A Tribute Live from Vegas” Friday, February 17, 8 p.m. Tickets are $27/person the day of the show.
Northstar California is offering its popular First Tracks program Saturday, February 18. Guests meet at 7:30 a.m. with guides accompanying them to the Tahoe Zephyr Express to the top of Backside and Lookout Mountain with runs to themselves before the lifts open to the public. Cost is $80/person and includes a full breakfast. Reservations must be made 48 hours in advance.
PlumpJack Squaw Valley Inn in Olympic Valley continues its Winter Winemaker Series Thursday, February 23, 5:30-9:30 p.m., with Bardessono Vineyards. Guests can mingle with the winemaker and enjoy sips by the glass, flight or paired with PlumpJack’s special Chef’s Tasting Menu.
The Squeeze In has been pleasing kids since 1974. Kids get toy baskets, get to write on the walls, have a special menu and are treated like actual guests at the Squeeze In home. Order their rockin’ hot cocoa piled high with whipped cream and sprinkles. It’s a winner every time, along with the signature Teddy Bear Pancake! A bear shaped smile for every kid, young and old!
At the Tahoe House, kids feel right at home by the cozy fire, with loaner crayons, colorings books and plastic and wooden toys – all of which keeps them busy as they wolf down their bagel. Family owned and operated since 1977, the Tahoe House Bakery & Gourmet features baked breads and pastries, the “best coffee on the lake,” sandwiches and much more!
Tubing, Sledding, Snow Play!!
Granlilbakken Granlibakken ski area features a groomed snowplay area with rental saucers for sledding. Open daily, weather permitting.
Snowtubing at Squaw Valley USA Squaw’s tubing park at the Papoose Learning Center offers two tubing lanes for varying thrill levels. Open daily, weather permitting.
Sledding and Tubing at Soda Springs Winter Resort Currently only open on weekends, at Soda Springs you can sled and tube! Sledding lanes, tubing lanes and a Little Dipper children’s area provide a variety of thrill and fun for adults and children alike.
Olympic Ice Pavilion Enjoy scenic views of the Lake while skating atop Squaw Valley on an Olympic-size rink at High Camp recreation complex. Open 11am – 9pm during the winter season. Rentals, lessons available.
Ice Skating Rink at the Resort at Squaw Creek Skate on the Resort at Squaw Creek’s own private rink with heated waterfalls, hot tubs, a pool and the peaks of Squaw Valley as a backdrop. Rentals available. Open December to April.
Truckee Ice Skating Rink The Truckee rink features skate rentals, a snack bar, group and private lessons for all age groups taught by experienced instructors, broomball leagues, and more.
These are just a handful of the family opportunities up in North Lake Tahoe right now. What are your favorite family activities?
So what do you do when Mother Nature doesn’t deliver fresh powder? You make it.
North Lake Tahoe ski resorts are blowing millions of gallons of snow this season, creating a solid base that has most resorts open for some solid skiing and riding.
Northstar-at-Tahoe is open top-to-bottom (that’s 2,280 vertical feet) due to significant improvements in snowmaking – 11 lifts, 19 trails and tons of acres for beginners, intermediates and advanced winter enthusiasts. This North Shore resort currently has the most open ski resort terrain in the Lake Tahoe region, and plans to open Martis Camp Express this Saturday, which will provide access to Lookout Mountain.
Northstar-at-Tahoe’s Pinball Park, which offers a wide variety of jibs and snow features with everything from street rails to boxes along with tabletops, step-downs, hips and rollers, is also open with 31 features available.
Boreal Mountain Resort was the first resort to open in California, opening for business October 28, and also offers top-to-bottom skiing and snowboarding.
Credit by Boreal Mountain Resort
So far, Borealhas blown more than 32 million gallons of snow this season – that’s an all-time record for the resort. It only took over 500 hours with an automated Snow Machines Inc. gun system. It cost $2.5 million over the past three years, but this has actually saved 40% of their snowmaking operation costs annually and reduced carbon output by 300 tons annually.
Diamond Peak Ski Resort(originally Ski Incline) was the first ski resort in the West to have snowmaking, which has come a long way since its opening in 1966. Over the past 11 years, Diamond Peak has continuously upgraded it snowmaking system.
Cold temperatures over the last month have allowed them to produce snow in record amounts and open with top-to-bottom skiing and riding a week earlier than expected. They plan to have five out of six lifts available by Christmas with or without natural snow.
Mt. Rose – Ski Tahoe probably wouldn’t have been able to open without snowmaking, but the resort pulled through with the Northwest Magnum lifts and Ponderosa lifts turning 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily accessing the Kit Carson Traverse, Kit Carson Bowl and Ponderosa Trails. Luckily with cooler temperatures this week, the resort was able to operate snow guns practically non-stop and are planning to get the Flying Jenny surface lift and more trails on the Ponderosa lift open by next weekend.
Credit by Sugar Bowl Ski Resort
Sugar Bowl Ski Resort, near Borealon Donner Summit, has taken advantage of the recent cold temperatures running their snow guns 24 hours a day, resulting in the opening of additional terrain at the resort. Starting Saturday, December 17, Sugar Bowl will operate seven days a week. The resort will spin Jerome Hill Express, Nob Hill, Christmas Tree Express and White Pine this coming weekend, providing sufficient terrain for all levels of ability. Sugar Bowl also plans to open the Caboose Terrain Park this weekend, with medium and large features accessible via the Emigrant Gap run.
Whether you want to believe it or not, we’re getting close to ski and board season in North Lake Tahoe. Resorts have been pulling out all the stops with great deals on season passes for several months already. If you’ve yet to purchase a pass or are still undecided on which resort to head to, here are the details on each resort’s season pass program:
Ski Tahoe North Interchangeable Lift Ticket: Ski Tahoe North’s Interchangeable Lift Ticket is accepted at all seven alpine ski resorts, every single day of the season. Use your ticket at a different resort each day, or find your favorite mountain and return over and over again. You can purchase the interchangeable pass to include 3 to 7 days, with prices ranging from $222 to $518. There are no blackout dates and you get 2-for-1 purchasing power at Diamond Peak. The pass is limited to residents of specific zip codes, so check here to see if you qualify.
Alpine Meadows: If you purchased your Alpine Meadows season pass before September 27 your options included a variety of options from Filtered, Slightly Filtered and Unfiltered as well as a Tripl3Threat College Pass covering Alpine, Homewood and nearby Kirkwood. The September 27 announcement of Alpine’s merge with Squaw Valley USA introduced a new slate of pass options under the Tahoe Super Pass, valid at both Squaw and Alpine. Levels are still based on blackout dates and include: Bronze, from $439 for adults, which has some blackout dates as well as no access all Saturdays in January and February. The Silver Pass gives access any day of the week but includes select blackout dates and is $599 for adults. The Gold Pass has unrestricted access to both mountains any day and is $799 for adults. Purchase passes online hereand get details on previously purchased 2011/12 Alpine Season Passes here.
Diamond Peak: Diamond Peak’s no-nonsense season pass plan offers great rates for visitors along with their famous lake views. Current adult pass rates are $454 valid any day or $363 for Monday through Friday only. Rates are also available for seniors from $150, super seniors from $42, children, youth and college students from $125. If you’re a beginner Diamond Peak may be the place for you with their special $109 Beginner Season Pass, valid for the easier Lodgepole and Schoolhouse lifts. Click for details and to purchase.
Homewood Mountain Resort: Like Diamond Peak, Homewood has amazing views of Lake Tahoe that passholders can’t get enough of. Adult rates are $399, senior is $199, and youth passes are $159 – $259 depending on age. Since this resort is partnered with Alpine Meadows, you can also access the slopes at Alpine and Kirkwood if you purchase the Alpine combo season pass. Click here for details on each option.
Granlibakken: While Granlibakken doesn’t offer season pass rates, their daily passes are just $24 for adults and $14 for children under 12. And yes, that’s the full day rate! They also offer the opportunity to buy out an entire ski hill for private parties and corporate team building for just $750/day. Pretty cool. Check out details here.
Mt. Rose-Ski Tahoe: Mt. Rose staked a claim for low-priced season passes more than a decade ago and continues to offer great deals. Their Raw pass has just a few blackout dates and covers all age groups for just $199. To avoid blackouts and have a choice of any day to ski check out the unlimited pass at $377 for adults, $255 for seniors, $199 for 13 – 22 and $133 for children. Get the rates and other passholder perks.
Northstar-At-Tahoe: With Northstar’s addition to the Vail Resorts fold season pass options have really unfolded for this year. You can get just the basic Tahoe Value pass for $379 (adult rate) and gain Sunday – Thursday access to Northstar and nearby Heavenly with limited blackout dates. Or, you can upgrade to one of the Epic Pass options, part of the 7-resort Vail system. The Epic 7-Day offers 7 unrestricted tickets valid at any of the 7 mountains for $499 adult or $249 child. If you plan on skiing more than 7 days, consider either the Epic Local Pass ($249 – $499) which includes 11 blackout dates but is otherwise valid daily at any of the 7 resorts, or the Epic Pass ($329 – $649) which again is valid at all 7 resorts but has no date restrictions. Get the full details to purchase.
Sugar Bowl: Sugar Bowl, similar to other resorts, offers passes based on whether you plan to hit the slopes mid-week or any day. The Midweek Plus Passes are valid Monday through Friday with some blackout dates but offers unrestricted access before Christmas and after March 11. Rates range from $299 – $329 based on age. If you like to head up Sundays, consider the Summit Sunday Pass which is basically the Midweek Pass with Sundays included, just $319 – $429 based on age. For even more access consider Slightly Restricted, offering any day of the week and select blackout dates, or the Unrestricted with access any day. Pass rates are $179 – $529 for Slightly Restricted and $209 – $799 for Unrestricted. Evaluate all of the options here.
Squaw Valley USA: Squaw makes season passes buying easy, and now with the acquisition of nearby Alpine Meadows, offers mountain access at both resorts. If you already purchased a season pass at Squaw (except the Squaw Midweek), then it’s valid at Alpine as well. Otherwise, the options for Squaw passes are the same as those for Alpine under the Tahoe Super Pass. See Alpine Meadows above for details. Then, step onto the medal podium here. (Photo credit: Tom Day)
As always, resorts are offering deals if you purchase early so be sure to check the sites sooner rather than later if you want to snag a great pass deal. Locals often get better rates as well, so if you live nearby, check to see if you qualify. Each resort offers a variety of benefits with their passes, from early powder days to resort discounts, line-jumping, special parties and more. Depending on your slope-style, you’ll want to check out those additional benefits as well as the actual resort terrain when making your decision.
And just what is a super senior? Be warned, they’re the advanced skiers over 70 that can still impress with their slope prowess.
In Tahoe we’re fortunate to have the mother of all hiking trails right in our backyard. The famed Tahoe Rim Trail is a 165-mile dirt path looping around the entire lake, following the ridges that bound the Tahoe Basin. You can backpack it in its entirety in about 14 consecutive days. But if you don’t have that time commitment, check out any of the eight trailheads with trail segments that range from 12 to 33 miles in length, perfect for a weekend trip. Out and back routes are also available for day hikers.
One of the top locals picks is the Mt. Rose Loop Trail off Highway 431. The 5-6 mile roundtrip hike starts at 8,900 feet and tops out at 9,420 feet. You’ll get picturesque views of Lake Tahoe, the largest alpine lake in the country, and a beautiful waterfall. The Tahoe Rim Trail Association, the volunteer-based organization that built and maintains the Tahoe Rim Trail, has a calorie counter on its website if you need a little extra incentive – the Mt. Rose Loop burns approximately 1,422 calories if you take about 3 hours. That beats the treadmill any day!
Speaking of waterfalls, Shirley Canyon in Squaw Valley is one of the best, if not the best, hikes to view spectacular waterfalls. This 4-mile roundtrip trail starts at Squaw Peak Road and follows Shirley Creek up and over boulders, past waterfalls to Shirley Lake. From there, you can turn around and head back or keep hiking up to Squaw Valley USA’s High Camp and take the cable car down for free (along with the family pooch).
There is nothing more rewarding than taking a dip in crystal, clear waters after a strenuous hike. Five Lakes, accessible via Alpine Meadows Road, is popular for this very reason. A 5-mile hike, on a well maintained trail, has a tough uphill that gives way to some of North Lake Tahoe’s most popular swimming holes, five serene alpine lakes.
If you’re traveling with eager toddlers who want out of the car now! check out the family-friendly one-mile trek down to the historic Vikingsholm Castle on the West Shore. Park at the Vikingsholm Castle parking lot on Highway 89 and then take a dirt path down to the castle, which offers daily tours in the summer. It’s also a great spot for a packed picnic and offers up a sandy beach with fantastic views of Fannette Island, Lake Tahoe’s only island, and scenic Emerald Bay. This path is also stroller friendly.