Nothing like Lake Tahoe Ski Resorts!

Skiers and snowboarders alike can attest to the greatness of Lake Tahoe as one of, if not the, premier destination for shredding in the United States. Located on the border of California and Nevada, Lake Tahoe offers a huge variety of ski and snowboard environments from fluffy powder and cliffs to smooth groomers and terrain parks. There are dozens of Lake Tahoe ski resorts in and around Tahoe. While there are more than just eight that we love, these are our top picks for winter fanatics.

Squaw Valley

Voted the best ski resort in North America by USA Today, Squaw Valley at Lake Tahoe is a must-visit location for any serious skier or snowboarder. Squaw Valley Resort is bursting with vibrant ski culture and gorgeous scenery carved into the slopes of the Sierra Mountains. Located on the Northwest side of Lake Tahoe, Squaw Valley hosted the 1960 Winter Olympic Games and boasts 3,600 acres of skiable terrain made accessible by 29 lifts and 170 trails. 25% of this terrain is perfect for beginners, 43% for intermediate riders and 32% for those with a thirst for something difficult. Elevation ranges from 6,200 ft to 9,050 ft and averages 450 inches of soft powder that is some of the best in the Tahoe area. As an added bonus, Squaw Valley has a halfpipe for those looking to shred freestyle.

Lodging at Squaw Valley remains some of the best around Tahoe. The Village features a variety of condominium suites with European-style architecture and cozy interiors for a comfortable and memorable stay. There are 8 outdoor hot tubs, billiards, spas, shops, dining and more. So if you’re not into skiing or your grandma is with you, there is something for everyone to do. Squaw Valley is truly of the best Lake Tahoe ski resorts.

Lift Ticket Price: Adult / $89 – $169 

 Young Adult (13-17) / $72 – $139 

 Child (5-12) / $63 – $109 

 Senior (70+) / $72 – $139

Northstar California Resort

All that really needs to be said about Northstar California Resort is that it was once a volcano that last erupted 2 million years ago, helping to form Lake Tahoe. But if that’s not enough, Northstar offers 3,170 acres of skiable terrain between 6,330 ft and 8,610 ft. There are 100 trails to choose from 13% of which are for beginners, while 60% are for intermediate and 27% for advanced, making Northstar great for those looking challenge themselves without overdoing it. There is also plenty of gladed tree skiing for the thrillseekers in your group. Half of the resort is covered by their snowmaking network, so even on bad weather days, you can still ride some lovely snow. Perhaps my only complaint here is that base lifts will only take you as far as blue as green runs. So if you want something more challenging, you’ll have to catch another lift on the way up.

There is a wide variety of lodging options for high and low budgets alike, each guaranteeing a comfortable stay. Apres in the village is almost as special as the day spent on the slopes. Gather friends and family to share a few drinks and regale each other with the tales of the day. There are spas, yoga, ice skating and much more to do at Northstar Resort. It’s perfect for those looking to pack every hour of the day with something special.

Lift Ticket Price: Adult / $170 

 Young Adult (13-18) / $139 

 Child (5-12) / $100 

 Senior (65+) / $139

Alpine Meadows (Squaw Valley)

Nestled between Truckee and Tahoe City to the northwest of the lake is Alpine Meadows. I like to think of Alpine Meadows as the (somewhat) hidden gem of Tahoe. It’s owned and operated by Squaw Valley, and so is included with a pass for Squaw Valley. The best thing about Alpine Meadows is that it has all of the amazing skiing that everyone else around Lake Tahoe has, but generally houses smaller crowds. As someone who likes to like to be on my lonesome, this is a huge plus for me. There are over 100 trails over 2,400 acres of diverse terrain with 25% for beginners, 40% intermediate and 35% for advanced riders. With 7 bowls and 2 terrain parks, there is no shortage of incredible skiing opportunities at Alpine Meadows.

Chalet-style lodging creates a cozy atmosphere that is perfect for warming up after a day on the slopes and enjoying a piping hot cup of cocoa.However, with a focus more on the skiing experience, lodging in Alpine Meadows is limited. You may need to stay in a hotel in or near Tahoe City.

Lift Ticket Price: Adult / $89 – $169 

 Young Adult (13-17) / $72 – $139 

 Child (5-12) / $63 – $109 

 Senior (70+) / $72 – $139

Homewood Mountain Resort

West of Lake Tahoe next to McKinney Bay we find the Homewood Mountain Resort. It’s hard not to think of Homewood Mountain when considering the best Lake Tahoe ski resorts. Known for some of the best views of the lake anywhere around Tahoe, Homewood makes you feel right at home, boasting some of the finest skiing and hospitality in the whole region. While comparatively small (1,260 acres of skiable terrain), the conditions are amazing. Homewood averages 450 inches of snow per year as well as 300 sunny days, so your chances of a bluebird day are pretty high. The slopes are protected by Ellis Peak from particularly high winds, so closures aren’t as common as elsewhere. The resort boasts a wide variety of groomed runs, glade-runs, terrain parks and hidden powder stashes. However you like to ride, there is something for you at Homewood Mountain Resort.

The lakefront Tahoe lodging is absolutely gorgeous, but what really makes Homewood Special is the wide array of dining options. The West Shore Cafe and Inn is widely known for its lakefront dining and community atmosphere.

Lift Ticket Price: Adult / $49 – $109 

 Young Adult (13-18) / $37 – $69

Child (5-12) / $22 – $49 

 Senior (62-69) / $37 – $69 

 Super Senior (70+) / $22 – $49

Sierra At Tahoe

If you’re looking to shred pow, look no further than Sierra at Tahoe. Known for showcasing some of the best powder in the Tahoe area, Sierra is where you want to go for surfy rides and deep carves. 46 groomed and ungroomed trails provide all the variety in terrain you want and covers around 2000 acres of land. It’s generally not very windy a well, so you can count on the slopes being open most of the year. The only thing to watch out for is the giant boulders that sometimes dot the landscape. Check out Huckleberry Canyon for powder-filled bowls, cliffs, cornices and more. Sierra Resort also boasts incredible side-country and tree skiing.

There is no lodging on-site at Sierra, but there are plenty of great places to stay in town nearby. There is tons of great local fare from barbecue to wraps and salads. Kids also have plenty of options for fun with snow tubing, snow parks, ice skating and more. After a long day on the slopes, and catch your breath next to a warm fire in the plaza.

Lift Ticket Price: Adult / $105 – $110 

 Young Adult (13-22) / $95 – $100

 Child (5-12) / $41 – $45 

 Senior (65-69) / $72 – $76 

 Super Senior (70+) / $41 – $45

Sugar Bowl Resort

If you’re looking to plunge headlong into the deepest snow around Tahoe, Sugar Bowl Resort is the place to be. Sugar Bowl averages 500 inches of snowfall every year, the highest in Tahoe, so you’re likely to have fresh powder to shred on. There are 1,650 acres of skiable terrain over 4 peaks and 100 trails, giving you plenty of variety for all skill levels. 17% of these trails are for beginners, while 45% or for intermediate riders and 38% for advanced respectively. One of my favorite things about Sugar Bowl Resort is that the crowds are smaller than elsewhere and the lift lines are relatively short compared to many in Tahoe, so you spend more time on the slopes and less time standing around. It does have a tendency to get busy on weekends as it’s one of the more easily accessible resorts from the Bay Area. Mt. Judah has the largest variety of blues and greens, while Mt. Lincoln is home to the challenging black diamonds.

There is lodging located at the bases of both Mt. Lincoln and Mt. Judah, as well as “The Hotel”, a European-style hotel that offers warm comforts like fireplaces, bars, spas and more. Sugar Bowl has plenty of great shopping and dining options as well, and will even host your wedding! Sugar Bowl is also connected via trail to Royal Gorge, North America’s largest cross-country ski resort, making it one of the best and most versatile Lake Tahoe ski resorts in the whole area. 

Lift Ticket Price: Adult / $118 – $125 

 Young Adult (13-22) / $97 – $103 

 Child (6-12) / $69 – $73 

 Senior (65-74) / $97 – $103 

 Super Senior (75+) / $69 – $73

Diamond Peak Ski Resort

To the northeast above Incline Village perches the Diamond Peak Ski Resort. Diamond Peak is considered by many to be a beginner friendly resort, making it perfect for families looking to try something new for their annual vacation. There are plenty of beginner and intermediate runs to help you hone your skills, and some of the best views in Tahoe to boot. But don’t be fooled. Diamond Peak still has plenty of options for advanced level riders. Compared to other resorts in Tahoe, Diamond Peak Resort is small at just 655 acres, but they are “tall and skinny” as they put it, which means some intense vertical drops. In fact, there are 1,840 vertical feet, making it the 4th ranked resort in the Tahoe region for “True-Up Vertical.” Diamond Peak also has some killer glade tree skiing. 500 of the 655 acres are gladed tree runs! For those looking to get creative, The Village Terrain Park is a constantly evolving park that offers excellent park riding at all skill levels.

Lodging for Diamond Peak is mostly located in and around Incline Village and offers a vast selection of room and board from luxury suites and condos to affordable hotels and rentals. Incline Village also has plenty of dining options as well as craft breweries and local cafes that offer a unique cultural experience unlike any other in Tahoe.

Lift Ticket Price: Adult / $89 – $109 

 Young Adult (13-23) / $69 – $89 

 Child (7-12) / $39 – $49

Heavenly Mountain Resort

It’s all in the name, and Heavenly Mountain Resort doesn’t disappoint. With 4,800 acres of skiable terrain, Heavenly Mountain is the 5th largest ski area in America and boasts some of the best-groomed snow around Tahoe. It’s also the highest resort in Tahoe at 10,067 feet, thus offering massive vertical drops, the longest of which is 3,500 feet! Heavenly Mountain has some of the best tree-skiing in Tahoe as well. It’s also hard to compare how great Heavenly Mountain snow is. Because of its location on the southeast side of Lake Tahoe, there is generally less moisture in the air. This results in better snow conditions throughout most of the year. There is snowmaking on 60% of their trails, so you never have to worry about large sections being closed. There are also two terrain parks for the freestyle folks in your family.

Between Lakeland Village, Zalanta and Gondola Vista, there are plenty of comfy options that will make you feel right at home while offering a luxury experience you’ll never forget. Each of these properties offers shuttles to and from the resort, and will take you into town for dinner and other activities. South Lake Tahoe features plenty of great local fare with craft breweries, restaurants, shops and more!

Lift Ticket Price: Adult / $164 

 Young Adult (13-22) / $134 

 Child (6-12) / $90 

 Senior (65+) / $134

Wherever you decide to hit the slopes near Tahoe, you can’t go wrong with any of the resorts mentioned above, get what you need and travel in style with gear from The House! Each of these Lake Tahoe ski resorts features some of the best snow, terrain and lodging you can find in the area and are perfect for families, groups, experienced and inexperienced skiers alike.

2019-03-13T21:19:44+00:00February 18th, 2019|

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