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Learning to Ski Park in Tahoe

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 



What's the best way to learn to ride in the park in Tahoe? 


Are there any instructors (preferably independent) who really standout?




My girlfriend and I are in our mid to late 20s, and we're both advanced intermediate/expert skiers who can tackle anything on-piste from the baby greens to the double blacks through the moguls.  We can ski backwards on greens.  But, we've never skied in the park.  We're always fascinated watching everyone from kids to adults skiing it as we ride up the lift lines, and we'd love to learn how to ski it.


Maybe it's just us being risk averse, but we'd prefer to learn it in a safer more controlled fashion.  It's just how we tend to learn best.  So we were thinking less "watch YouTube" and more "take a lesson".  That being said, we're really open to learning from both online, books, websites, instructor-led, camps, and any way that allows us to learn how to ski and enjoy the park.


One option we've had trouble finding online despite hours of research is whether there are any good instructors who are independent of the ski resorts, who charge an arm and a leg.


Related Questions:


  • Are there any great resources online (e.g. videos or websites) or offline (e.g. books) that you all would recommendation to someone starting to learn park?
  • We have our own skis for non-park, but do we need shorter poles or twin tips to safely ski park?
  • Anything else that you would recommend for beginner park skiers?



Thanks in advance for your advice!

post #2 of 7
FWIW, Shawn White's home mountain is Northstar.  Their park seems like it has some great features(from someone who's not a park skier) 
You may try their ski school to see if you can get a lesson at Northstar.
post #3 of 7



Ask people who are more likely to have knowledgeable input.

post #4 of 7

+1 on newschoolers.com - you'll get much better advice than you will here.


For Tahoe, I'd say Northstar is a good place to learn, as TrekChick suggested.  They already have a decent terrain park setup on Pinball.  I'm not a park skier - at all - but decided to give it a try the other day and they have several features that were good for skiers/riders who were new to that sort of thing.  Definitely start by sliding / jibbing on the boxes before the rails, as they're much easier.  They have some where the entry rise is minimal so you can just get up there without much speed and start to play around a little and build confidence.  And of course for jumps bend your knees and keep your arms forward for balance the same way you would send a cliff or drop in from a cornice.


And prepare to fall - you're just going to have to accept that it's going to happen and commit to it.

post #5 of 7

The places I'd go (not necessarily in order) are:






You want someplace with a progression of parks, not just the 'best' park in the area. Boreal should deliver on that, Northstar definitely does, and Squaw has in the past to a point, but probably will even more so now with renewed emphasis on park coming this season. All three should have instructors qualified for park - be sure to emphasize that's what you want when booking your lesson and again when you line-up with an instructor. If you get an instructor who can't really help you well, ask to be re-assigned and if that's not possible, complain to the ski school manager or ski school desk after your lesson.

post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks everyone for the advice!  Much appreciated.

post #7 of 7

Park skis would be beneficial. I broke my carvers last year hitting a kicker in the park. Twin tips, and detune the edges in the middle so you dont tear them out on a rail. Ive been learning park by the school of hard knocks, im sure your way is better haha. Im basically in your position, ski backwards a little more since my hill isn't a challenge... at all (gotta find entertainment somehow). Also make sure you bend your knees on landings as stated above, im skiing with a partially torn meniscus due to it.

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