Lake Tahoe area ski resorts are ramping up for a big winter.
Last season, chairlifts in Tahoe were turning for nearly seven months making one of the longest ski season in recent memory. This year resorts around the area are ready for another big season with ongoing capital improvements, new VIP services and air service.
The Reno-Tahoe International Airport will be adding additional air service with nonstop flights this winter from New York, Atlanta, Dallas, Los Angeles, Long Beach and other major gateway cities. Did you know that the airport has never experienced closure due to snow? This is good news for all the ski bums trying to get here, or for locals trying to get away for the holidays. In addition, The Reno-Tahoe Airport has recently undergone over $27.5 million in renovations that include more dining/shopping choices, expedited baggage handling and a more streamlines security process. www.renoairport.com
Photo courtesy of Diamond Peak
Diamond Peak celebrates its 50th golden anniversary this winter with a series of events that showcase the history of the resort, originally opened in 1966 as Ski Incline. Enjoy classic ski films from the 1960s to present day, hear stories from speakers and view multimedia from the resort’s past, plus decade-specific costume contests and more! The lodge will have images and memorabilia from day’s past on display all season long. In honor of the resort’s anniversary, a special 2016-2017 “Golden” Flex Pass multi-day lift ticket begins at $50 per day for adults. You can buy the pass in 2 to 7 day increments and it is fully transferable with no black-out dates, valid all season long. www.diamondpeak.com
“Design Your Own Experience” at Heavenly Mountain Resort’s Ski and Ride School, allowing guests to customize their day on the slopes with private lessons. Fill out the online form indicating personal preference for terrain, style, development and more. Want to book a lesson on the fly? The resort is placing convenient on-mountain kiosks where guests can easily reserve a lesson, coach or guide. Heavenly has also added the Tahoe Mountain Lab at its Lakeview Lodge. This shared workspace is for remote professionals who dream of taking a few runs before hopping on their scheduled conference calls. And lastly is the debut of EpicMix Time, an expansion of the Vail Resorts EpicMix app. The app allows skiers access to real time lift and gondola waiting periods for the whole mountain. EpicMix Time has also been expanded to the area’s other two Vail Resorts Tahoe properties: Kirkwood and Northstar. www.skiheavenly.com
Homewood Mountain Resort returns this winter with its Snowcat Adventures, a full-day guided experience to the top of Ellis Peak on the resort’s new enclosed snowcat. Up to ten skiers or boarders can ride per day and will have access to over 750 acres of wide open bowls, perfectly placed trees and private stashes of powder with hidden jaw-dropping views and vertical laps of 1,800+ feet. Take advantage of Homewood’s three-pack lift ticket for $59 per day and no blackout dates. www.skihomewood.com
Partnering with GoPro to host the second annual #KirkwoodDeep Riders Poll Awards in San Francisco, Kirkwood Mountain Resort is an obligatory stop in Lake Tahoe. A Vail Resorts Tahoe property, the resort will be expanding its Expedition: Kirkwood instructional program. Services range from daily mountain guides to private snowcat tours. www.kirkwood.com
Last year, Mt. Rose-Ski Tahoe invested over $1.2 million in on-mountain upgrades and trail improvements, including four new trails accessed off the newly named Wizard Chairlift. They have also upgraded their pumping capacity to more than double the snowmaking capabilities of their nine Polecat snowmaking machines that were just installed last winter. The resort is targeting an early open date of October 31, weather and conditions permitting. www.skirose.com
Photo courtesy of Squaw Alpine
Squaw Valley | Alpine Meadows will play host to the Audi FIS World Cup tour in March for the first time in almost 50 years. Squaw has spent $3.6 million on capital improvements on the mountain and is the first California ski resort to utilize Gazex Inertia Exploder technology, a remotely controlled avalanche mitigation system that uses propane gas and oxygen to create a concussive blast. This will help Ski Patrol’s efficiency in opening terrain. Additionally, the resort’s snowmaking systems have undergone major enhancements including three new SMI fan guns, 12 HKD low energy guns, replacement of air and water pipelines and upgrades to 102 automatic snowmaking hydrants. www.squawalpine.com
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