or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › EpicSki Community › Trip Reports  › Tahoe Trip report
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Tahoe Trip report

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Before my trip I had been viewing this forum for tips on our holiday, so I thought I would like to write a brief report which may helps others

I have just returned from a fabulous trip to lake Tahoe between the 29th March and the 5th April.

We stayed at the Squaw valley lodge which was great, close to the slopes and the village (although would have been nice if it had a bar).

Our overall impressions of skiing in North America is that the snow is incredible, resorts quieter, people so much more friendly, and therefore we will be back.

Our 1st day skiing was the 30th which was epic as My wife or I had never skied North america before and the snow was so much better than anything we had prviously experienced. People we saying it was quite busy in places due to the easter break and that it had just finshed snowing, but in our eyes it was much quieter than resorts in Europe.

The 2nd day we again skied Squaw and had a private lesson for My wife and I in the morning. He took us up KT-22 and did the olympic lady and the saddle before mving across to headwall and sibera. All these are fantastic, although some of the runs are a little bit shorter than some in Europe but with the efficient lifts with no queues you don't mind.

The 3rd day we went to Heavenly, and although the skiing was good, it is not in the same league as Squaw. There seemed to be a lot more flats areas and lifts not linked aswell. Plus the town is a completey different character than Squaw (although some may prefer these casinos and flashing lights)

Back to Squaw for the forth day as we missed the place so much the previous day. We focused on the runs off granite chief and down silverdo (very quite and almost hidden to the rest of the place)

The 5th day it was snowing so we headed o Northstar and it looks like the village area when complete will be similar to Squaw. Here again due to it snowing the snow was excellent and it put down nearly 12inches during the day when we where there. We didn't get chance to venture into the back bowls due to the high winds but the runs we did do were enjoyable although the steeps would have been nice if they were longer.

The rest of the skiing was done at Squaw as only had a 4 out of 6 day pass and need to use it up. but on last day we also decide we wanted to stop in Squaw as it had been the best resorts we had experienced.

We ate in various resturants bars around Squaw balboa Cafe, Sierra High Grille, Plumpjack inn, and the pizza place and never had a bad meal or beer among them.

People in the lift queues (had problem finding these apart from the 1st lift of the day) where very friendly and no pushing etc. On the lifts people would talk away to you and recommend areas to you (almost unheard of in some parts of Europe)

We will be back at sometime

post #2 of 14
Glad to hear you enjoyed your visit to Tahoe. I think Squaw is one of the better mountains in North America and love to ski there. The only thing missing from the N Tahoe area is a good western-town-like setting with lots of bars and restaurants to walk to. Park City, Telluride, and Breckenridge all provide great nightlife in this respect (as do many others I am missing...).

But again, the skiing is hard to beat at Squaw, and that is the most important factor in my book.
post #3 of 14
Originally Posted by acanno
We will be back at sometime

Thanks for the report. You really should come back next year. Say January 29 to February 2nd at Snowbird/Alta Utah?
post #4 of 14
Gracias for report, and am glad you enjoyed California! We're planning on Squaw and Heavenly next winter, can you comment on their GROOMING virtues, on Blue and Black trails? Much appreciated.
post #5 of 14
I do not think Squaw grooms its black runs, only blue runs and they do a very good job to make intermediates happy. However, I think their blue runs are much more difficult than the blue runs in other resorts. Basically, Squaw is a skier's mountain, end of the story.
post #6 of 14

Squaw does groom blacks

Squaw grades its lifts not its runs. And generally there's always a groomer off each lift. But note that the rare groomer down Tower 12 off the Broken Arrow lift can be scarey 'cause it's straight down a 30 degree slope - it's actually easier when it isn't groomed 'cause you can concentrate on the next few turns rather than worrying about what happens if you miss the next turn :
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
Gpaul, when I was there last week they seemed to groom most of the slopes each especially the blues and where there was blacks coming off the mountian they would try and do both although places Granite chief the two black they would alternate each night between the two.

Although on the Sunday when we were there and it was snowing the groomers were unable to do much grooming (due to the storm) and therefore the following day very little was groomed - but it was glorious powder.

The blues and black in Squaw are slightly harder (probably steeper) I think than some of the surrounding resorts, as compared to Heavenly they just let there on-piste blacks mogul up to increase difficult as originally not as steep as some in Squaw.
post #8 of 14
jackwan1 - I love the difficult groomed runs, my b&B (like stein's and tycoon @ Deer Valley, porky's face @ Snowbasin, avanti/international @ Vail, etc.).

TruckeeLocal - Tks.

acanno - an un-groomed, powder day is a must during a vacation (mind you, just one or two days, the rest sunny...). You and others have led me to give Squaw a harder look, it seems more fun, and challenging!
post #9 of 14

Was at Squaw the same week. Just so you know, you won't find a better day than 3/30 was--8" new powder (as much as you can call it that in the Sierras) and lots of sunshine. One of the best days I've had in a long time. Glad you enjoyed it.

- Lou
post #10 of 14
To echo what others have said, Squaw has plenty of groomed steeps as well as ungrommed. KT usually has 2 or 3, Headwall 1 or 2, Granite Chief 2 and the "Land Bridge" run just below High Camp going down to the Silverado lift is a blast. Shirley Lake, Red Dog, Gold Coast, Squaw Creek, and Far East all have plenty of medium to steeper Blue runs. For my type of skiing Squaw has a near perfect blend steep high speed groomers and medium difficulty ungroomed where I might actually get past the advanced stage.
post #11 of 14
Heavenly has taken quite a beating in several threads. It can be a good cruising mountain. The area is probably best seen as 5 or 6 separate ski areas joined by traverses:
1 The Face, Hogsback and Gunbarrel;
2 Sky Express, Canyon Express and Powderhorn Express;
3 Comet and Dipper (avoid Galaxy area);
4. Mott Killebrew Canyons;
5. Stagecoach, North Bowl, Olympic;
6 The Gondola and Tamerack just connect between CA and NV

Once you know how to move around, the place is OK, and the traverses discourage snowboarders. If its a crowded day, there will be almost no one on North Bowl and Olympic (slow chairs). There are some good tree runs in those areas as well. As you can see, this area is cut up and its not for everyone. If you ski off-piste, you will begin to see where some of the claimed 4800 acres comes from, but truth is, you would have to climb to the top of Monument Peak which their maps show as inbounds. (Rant) Kind of ticks me off they show the top of Sky Express is 10,040 feet, and based on GPS and 7.5 minute topo maps, its is 9970. The peak in front of the off-load area is 10,040 and Monument peak is 10,087; a 200 foot vertical, 1000 foot horizontal climb from the Nevada traverse.

Anyway, Heavenly is good in many respects, but isn't the skier's mountain that Squaw, Kirkwood or Mammoth is.
post #12 of 14
jgiddyup - nice report on Squaw!

Cirqueride - good to see you again!
post #13 of 14
Originally Posted by TruckeeLocal
Squaw grades its lifts not its runs. And generally there's always a groomer off each lift. But note that the rare groomer down Tower 12 off the Broken Arrow lift can be scarey 'cause it's straight down a 30 degree slope - it's actually easier when it isn't groomed 'cause you can concentrate on the next few turns rather than worrying about what happens if you miss the next turn :

Sorry, I don't ski groomed runs often enough to tell, I normally warmup on the Red Dog and off I go......
post #14 of 14
We had the same trip different days, and almost universally concur with everything said. We also included a day a Alpine Meadows which we thoroughly enjoyed. We plan to return to Tahoe, but (no offense) we would not go back to Heavenly.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Trip Reports
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › EpicSki Community › Trip Reports  › Tahoe Trip report