North Lake Tahoe Area Resources
North Lake Tahoe Local Tips
If you haven’t been skiing or snowboarding, take a lesson. The Ski Instructors are a great source of knowledge and are eager to help you. If you haven’t been on the mountain in a while, lessons can also help you with style and confidence.
Make sure to try a couple different ski resorts. Lake Tahoe is an extraordinary place and each mountain has its own specialties. Treat yourself to new terrain because that is what sets Tahoe apart from all other ski areas; we have multiple mountain resorts to choose from!
There is always something going on once the lifts close, so make sure to consult your concierge, property manager, internet, or good old local newspaper to find out what is happening in Tahoe while you are here.
Sunscreen is not just a suggestion, it is a requirement! We are a lot closer to the sun up here, so even on cloudy days there is tons of exposure.
Helmets are your friend. They can turn a bad wreck into a minor fall.
North Lake Tahoe's Mountains Resort Guides
Northstar at Tahoe
Northstar at Tahoe has long been known as a family-friendly ski resort, and we rate it best at Lake Tahoe for family skiing and snowboarding. Base elevation is 6,330 feet (1,929 meters), the summit is at 8,610 feet (2,624 meters), and average annual snowfall is 350 inches (9 meters). Northstar at Tahoe is the only area ski resort that offers free, overnight ski check to everyone. Moderate-pitched, well-groomed Mt. Pluto is the family skiing place here, while intermediate skiers like Schaffer's Camp. The Backside provides long, uninterrupted runs of groomed powder and bumps and Lookout Mountain offers plenty of steeps and tree skiing. A wide variety of terrain parks are available for snowboarders and freestyle skiers. Learn to ski with the Learn to Ride program or improve your skills during the free, daily Free Ride Sessions, any time except peak periods mid-December through mid-January and the second week of February. Other winter activities include ice skating, cross-country skiing and tubing.
The Sierra crest forms the western border of both Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows. In Alpine Bowl and Summit Bowl at 8,500 feet, snowfall averages about 450 inches. The Alpine Meadows recorded average of 387 inches is measured at its 7,000 foot base, about a mile east of the Sierra crest. The Scott Peak and Lakeview areas extend another mile east of the base and probably get a little less snow despite being over 8,000 feet. Alpine Meadows is about half north facing with a complete range of exposures on the other half. Alpine Meadows is one mile south of Squaw, but conditions tend to be more consistent. The base area is higher and closer to the Sierra Crest, so it will have better early season coverage and be less sloppy in warm weather. It also means that much or all of the area will be closed for wind or avalanche control during storms. In general, Alpine has a fairly swift transition to spring conditions, particularly with the wide range of exposures. It is definitely a "follow the sun" mountain: South facing Sherwood in the morning, east facing sections of the Summit bowl midday, and west facing Scott and Lakeview in the afternoon will often have ideal corn snow.
Homewood Ski Resort
The average snowfall at Homewood is 482 inches (512 inches last season). The base elevation is 6,230 feet and the summit is 7,800 feet, making for a vertical drop of 1,650 feet. There is a day lodge at the north and south base areas of the mountain. Homewood is a powder lover's paradise! Skiers can take in fantastic panoramas from 99% of Homewood's 56 runs spread out over 1,260 acres. There are four chairlifts and four surface lifts to whisk skiers and riders to incredible powder and tree skiing and excellent groomed runs that will satisfy every skill level. The varied terrain is rated 15% beginner, 50% advanced and 35% vital intermediate. The longest run is two miles. Homewood is a great mountain for the family that likes to ski and play together. The resort is family oriented and the friendly staff encourage nonstop fun. The varied terrain enables all of the family members to have a challenging and enjoyable experience suited to individual abilities. Kids ten years and under ski free!
History of Tahoe
History of Tahoe
The simple facts - no matter where you go, North Shore or South Shore, you are going to experience the 396 inches of annual snowfall, the 300 days of sunshine, have somewhat close access to the 18 excellent ski and snowboarding resorts, golf courses, casinos, and the breathtaking Lake Tahoe. Mark Twain called Lake Tahoe "the fairest picture the whole earth affords."
The California portion of Tahoe contains Alpine Meadows, Northstar, and Squaw Valley ski resorts. It also has the popular towns of Tahoe City, Truckee, Kings Beach, and Agate and Carnelian Bay. North Shore is all about calm and relaxation. Not as many first timers stay in North Shore, they may venture over on a day trip or on one of the shuttle's buses, but North Shore is all about keeping calm and enjoying the solitude the lake has to offer. Many Californians and long time vacation homeowners visit North Shore and soak up the lack of the excitement and lights present just down the street.
The peaceful nature of Lake Tahoe is capitalized on and the residents and visitors of North Shore seem more relaxed, more like people recharging and recomposing themselves. This does not mean that there are not a wide array of different activities to explore and enjoy, North Shore still offers first class ski resorts, shuttles to and from, fine dining restaurants, spa packages, outlet shopping, and quaint historical walks and museums, it just asks that you take them at your own pace. Travelers will not be overwhelmed by the multitude of places to go and things to see, but can select things that look of interest to them, that day. Plus, you can always cross over the Nevada side for an evening out or two!