North Lake Tahoe

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Q&A: A Guide to Lila’s north shore stomping grounds

Top 5 places to train (in Tahoe?) for upcoming ski races:

  • Diamond Peak.
  • Sugar Bowl.
  • Squaw Valley.
  • Incline Rec Center (spin bikes, BBall court, space for race preparation).
  • Barton Health Center of Excellence and their affiliates on North Shore.

Otherwise I travel so often that we usually train near the race venues in Europe, USA or Canada!

Experience North Lake Tahoe through the eyes of a would-be Olympian.

Lila Lapanja is an olympic hopeful and professional alpine skier. Photo courtesy of Lila Lapanja.

Favorite way to spend a winter morning in North Lake Tahoe:

I wake up, have hot tea (preferably ginger or rooibos), eat a hot breakfast and then go outside. Depending on the conditions, I either go to Diamond Peak to freeski/train or walk to Incline Beach and admire my lake. I love the cold winter-air-smell and crunch of snow boots in the snow!

Experience North Lake Tahoe through the eyes of a would-be Olympian.

Though Lila Spends much of her time on the slopes, she sees all of North Lake Tahoe is her home. Photo courtesy of Lila Lapanja.

Favorite way to experience nature:

  • Active experience: Hiking.
  • Relaxing experience: Sitting quietly by a stream, river or lake surrounded by trees.

Experience North Lake Tahoe through the eyes of a would-be Olympian.

North Lake Tahoe’s scenic, stony beaches are especially beautiful to Lila. Photo courtesy of Lila Lapanja.

Favorite event in North Tahoe:

I loved the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival as a kid.

Describe your favorite alpine run in North Lake Tahoe:

In perfect conditions I go to the Crystal Ridge Run and ski to Diamond Back (off of the Crystal Quad chair) at Diamond Peak. Crystal Ridge Run offers one of the best ski views in the world while the fall line of Diamond Back gives me an adrenaline rush. View and speed: perfect combo.

Best way to wind down:

  • When I’m home: Hot bath, light a candle and read a great book and/or cuddle with my cat, Iris.
  • When I travel: communing with nature on a relaxing walk while listening to music and exploring my surroundings.

Favorite Tahoe season:

We have 4 perfect seasons. Every time the season changes, I think, “Oh I love _____ in Tahoe. ______ is my favorite season!” Spring may edge out winter and summer, but only slightly. It’s a close race.

Nothing beats bathing in Tahoe’s perfect waters. To Lila, there’s nothing quite like bathing in Tahoe’s perfect waters. Photo courtesy of Lila Lapanja.

Favorite Tahoe splurge:

I love getting massages from Starlight BodyWorks in Tahoe City complemented with many other bodyworkers in North Tahoe. Vertical Fitness in Incline Village is my other favorite splurge: they offer yoga, pole fitness and more in a fun, playful environment with amazing teachers.

What is your greatest Tahoe love:

My greatest Tahoe love is spending time basking in the sun on the rocks of the east shore and then jumping in the water. This is my ultimate R & R; sometimes I believe it is better than a vacation. Lila + warm granite rock + calm, warm wind + lapping water + the sounds of summer on the lake = a big smile and peaceful soul.

Experience North Lake Tahoe through the eyes of a would-be Olympian.

A day spent on North Lake Tahoe’s sun-soaked shores is a day well-spent in Lila’s book. To Lila, there’s nothing quite like bathing in Tahoe’s perfect waters. Photo courtesy of Lila Lapanja.

Describe your perfect Tahoe day:

Every day in Tahoe is perfect 😉
Perfect Tahoe summer day: When it’s summertime in Tahoe, it’s my responsibility as a human to get outside. On my perfect day, I go on a super long mountain bike ride or hike with my dad, Vojko (he’s my workout buddy). Then I either go straight to the beach to jump in the water OR our family will order from T’s Rotisserie (best chicken burritos ever) and/or have a BBQ on the beach. I jump in the lake and swim and then enjoy an afternoon/evening with friends and family. If a warm thunderstorm decides to arrive during evening/sunset, that is perfect. Then I go home to my hot bath (which always feels good after jumping in the cold water!).
Perfect Tahoe winter day: On a crisp morning either with fresh snowfall or perfect groomed conditions, I go ski at Diamond Peak in the AM and enjoy the freedom of the mountain. I come off the hill and spend time at home with family with hope that another giant storm will roll into the basin. As the storm brews, I do a short workout at the Rec Center. After, we cook a hearty meal, light the fire in the fireplace, prepare popcorn and gather for a movie (cue the blizzard!).
Think of the lyrics in the Christmas song, “Let it Snow!”

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