10 Reasons Spring Makes Lake Tahoe The Best Lake

images_sunsetSpring in Lake Tahoe is a special time. There is a saying amongst locals that people “come for the winter and stay for the summer”.  Springtime is the unique time where visitors and locals are able to experience the best of both seasons.  My ideal spring day in Lake Tahoe goes something like this…. wake up to the bright sun peaking in the window,  hit the slopes mid-morning to take a few turns, then put the skis and snowboards on the car and pull out the kayaks and SUP boards and sail on the Lake for the afternoon.  End the day with a cool evening at a fire pit roasting s’mores under the clear starry skies.

In my opinion, here are the top 10 reasons why Spring makes Lake Tahoe … The Best Lake:

1. Less Crowds – Enjoy shorter lift lines, closer parking access and less crowded slopes as you take your last turns of the season while the rest of the ski goers have retired for the season.

images2.  Easy Driving – Do you hate winter driving whether it’s chain control, slippery roads or bad drivers?  Late winter storms tend to stick to the high elevations with less impact on mountain passes.  Plus the snow that does fall doesn’t stick as easy to the warmer roads making driving to the slopes a sinch!

3.  Lighter Later – With Daylight Savings Time begining mid-march visitors are able to extend their outdoor adventures after a day on the slopes to sunset hikes, beach walks and more!

4.  Best Time to Learn – Let’s be honest, not many people, kids especially, want to learn how to ski or snowboard in dumping snow conditions with freezing temperatures and scare visibility.  The sunny temperatures and somewhat slushy snow make ideal conditions for learners to master their mountain skills.

images35.  Clothing Optional – That’s right… shed those heavy winter layers and enjoy your days on the mountain while catching sun rays in lighter apparel including shells, t-shirts and even shorts!  I’ve seen it all.

6.  Hot Deals – Celebrate the end of the season with some of the best pricing including killer early booking deals for next year’s season pass.  To learn more about specific season pass deals read Spring It On with Season Pass Specials in Lake Tahoe!

7.  Get Your Gear – It’s no secret that at the end of the season retailers put their equipment and apparel on sale to empty their shelves of “last season” lines.  For information about the best equipment and retail locations in Lake Tahoe, learn more at the Lake Tahoe All Access Blog.

8.  Doggone Days – The weather is getting warmer and that means everyone wants to be outside as much as possible and your pent up dogs do too!  A great thing about spring is that you can enjoy the warm weather and still take your pups to the beaches around the lake before rules change.

Schneetag9. Fore! –  Golf courses around the basin including Old Brockway Golf Course as well as the courses in Reno begin to open for the season so why not ski one day and golf the next?

10. Skimming Along – End the season with a good ‘ole pond skim!  Resorts around the basin celebrate the end of the season and the melting of snow with pond skim competitions that draw crowds and cheers.  Most popular pond skim events are at Mt. Rose-Ski Tahoe, Heavenly and Squaw Valley.

Is there another reason that you love Lake Tahoe in the spring?  If so, please share it in the comments below!

Enjoy learning about Lake Tahoe?  Follow my blog and me at @robinpenning to receive information on tips, news, activities and special events in Lake Tahoe.

Photo Credit 1, Photo Credit 2Photo Credit 3, Photo Credit 4

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Pick Your Peak

Did you know that there is more skiable terrain in the Lake Tahoe Basin than in the entire state of Colorado?  In fact, Lake Tahoe and the surrounding Northern California Sierra Nevada region celebrates a total of 23 downhill ski and cross-country resorts for your winter adventure. Now, let’s take a closer look at the top ski resorts in the Lake Tahoe Basin and what makes each unique!

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Top Ski Resorts in Lake Tahoe

Alpine Meadows – With seven open bowls, 13 chair lifts and 100+ trails this resort is a favorite amongst locals and tourists alike for its diverse and extreme access terrain, great snow conditions and views of Lake Tahoe.  Recently joined with Squaw Valley, visitors now share access to both mountains with any lift ticket or the Tahoe Super Pass.

Heavenly – Views, views and more views!  Enjoy spectacular views of Lake Tahoe from all over this enormous ski resort spreading across both California and Nevada with three access gates, 29 chair lifts and 97 trails.  Begin your day with a ride up the mountain on its signature aerial tram and then enjoy its varied terrain throughout.  Part of Vail Resorts, visitors can enjoy all of the fun and accessiblity of their Epic Pass here!

Kirkwood – Regarded for its remote beauty and breathtaking skyline this resort boasts the highest base elevation and the deepest annual snowfall in Lake Tahoe.  Kirkwood is a favorite amongst locals for its unique terrain, backcountry access, signature lifts such as “The Wall” and remote location.  Kirkwood is also the newest edition to Vail Resort’s Lake Tahoe Epic Pass portfolio.

Mt. Rose – A North Lake Tahoe favorite and the only ski resort offering views of both Lake Tahoe and Reno.  Mt. Rose is the closest ski resort to Reno, a 30-minute drive, making it a favorite of Reno residents and visitors.  Its legendary Chutes offer some of the steepest and longest slopes in North America.

Northstar California – This resort has it all!  With 97 trails, 20 lifts, 3 lodges, tubing, ice-skating, 7 terrain parks, tree-skiing, half-pipe, super pipe, cross-country, telemark and snowshoe center and a vibrant village this resort will make every family member smile.   Look for Olympian Shawn White and visit the only Burton Academy training facility in North America.  And, your Vail Resort’s Epic Pass works here too!

Squaw Valley – A skier’s and rider’s paradise.  Famed host of the 1960 Winter Olympics, Squaw Valley includes 6 peaks, 3600 acres of terrain, 30 lifts, aerial tram, views of Lake Tahoe and a lively village.  It offers some of the most famous terrain in Lake Tahoe including steeps, bowls and cliffs along with the most extensive offerings of racing events and night skiing terrain.  Squaw Valley celebrates the longest ski season lasting until late spring and even sometimes 4th of July!

images ski run

Can’t choose just one ski resort to visit for the season or on your next trip?  Great news, you don’t have to!  There are fantastic interchangeable lift ticket passes which give you access to the top alpine ski resorts every day of the season such as Ski Tahoe North’s Interchangeable Lift Ticket as well as the Ski Lake Tahoe Six-Pack.  Also, websites like Liftopia are a one-stop shopping for the best daily lift ticket deals at all of the ski resorts in the Lake Tahoe Basin!

Do you have a favorite resort that you like to ski or ride at in Lake Tahoe?  Please share in the comments below which resort is your favorite and why?