Bragging rights are an important part of mountain culture…first ascents, first descents and the much-sought-after first chair on a powder day. The lengths locals go to in snagging first chairs are a thing of legend: predawn rally cries, all-night campouts and even the occasional rumor of beer being used as bribery. But few stories can outshine the first chair of the entire season, this feat can be brought up again and again at slope-side watering holes and still receive a hearty toast.

Powder-hungry skiers and snowboarders are celebrating this Thanksgiving holiday weekend as recent storms and ideal temperatures for supplemental snowmaking allowed all major Lake Tahoe ski resorts to open for the winter season. With additional storms on the horizon forecasted to deliver another 1-2 foot through the weekend, the mountains are in great shape for early season with top-to-bottom trails, miles of groomed corduroy and options for every ability level.

Value-minded travelers can take advantage of unbeatable lift ticket deals and stay-and-ski packages offered throughout the weeks leading up to the Christmas holiday period. With new nonstop flights into Reno-Tahoe International Airport from major gateway cities such as New York, Atlanta, Dallas and Los Angeles, savvy skiers and snowboarders can “Ski Free the Same Day You Fly” by simply presenting their boarding pass at the lift ticket window of participating resorts.

Check out the photo gallery below to get a taste of the satisfying slope conditions being enjoyed in Tahoe over the Thanksgiving holiday, extra helpings of pow encouraged