Top Ten Ways to Enjoy a Ski Vacation in Tahoe, Even if You Don’t Ski
Ride the Aerial Tram at Squaw Valley or the Scenic Gondola at Heavenly
Be a part of the action and join your friends and family for the ride up the mountain. Squaw Valley’s tram heads to High Camp with plenty of attractions for non-skiers including the Olympic Heritage Museum. Heavenly’s gondola stops at an observation deck before arriving at Adventure Peak home to the resort’s four-lane tubing hill. Both offer stunning views of Lake Tahoe, dining options at the top and regular rides back down.
Go for a Stargazing Snowshoe Tour at Northstar California
Enjoy the fresh mountain air and starry skies by embarking on an evening snowshoe tour at Northstar California hosted by star guide and poet, Tony Berendsen. The two hour guided treks include a laser tour of the cosmos and viewing through state-of-the-art Celestron telescopes. The snowy hikes end at the Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe where guests can relax beside a fire pit while sipping wine and hot cider
Try your hand at dogsledding at the Resort at Squaw Creek
Experience the thrill and excitement of a dogsledding tour through beautiful Squaw Valley with a team of eight to ten Alaskan Huskies leading the way. The hour-long trips depart from the Resort at Squaw Creek and are operated by Wilderness Adventures. Guests ride in a four-person sled at speeds approaching 15 miles per hour as the musher navigates a groomed 2.5-mile loop that winds through snow-covered meadows and surrounding forests. Show off your Triple Lutz at the ice rink in Heavenly Village
Truly a winter wonderland, the Heavenly Village is filled with shops, restaurants and family-friendly attractions including the open air ice rink located in the heart of all the action. The festive atmosphere ramps up during the resort’s annual Heavenly Holidays celebration as Olympic caliber skaters star in a 30-minute Ice Spectacular. Rental skates available
Get tubular at Sierra-at-Tahoe’s Blizzard Mountain
No visit to Lake Tahoe is complete without some good old-fashioned sledding and snowplay. Sierra-at-Tahoe’s Blizzard Mountain features two lift-served tubing lanes along with an expanded kids zone for building snowmen, making snow angels and a friendly mannered snowball fight. Don’t be surprised if Ralston the Snow Bear comes out of hibernation for a photo opp.
Build a snowman atop the highest pass in the Sierra Nevada
A short drive from Incline Village, Mt. Rose Summit (8,911 feet) is the highest mountain pass kept open year-round in all of the Sierra Nevada. The views alone are worth the drive to the top, but there’s also a convenient parking area for playing in the snow. Warm up at Sky Bar in the Winters Creek Lodge located on the Slide Mountain side of Mt. Rose-Ski Tahoe, its striking glass façade makes it feel as if you’re floating above the Washoe Valley.
Drive the West Shore for a breath-taking view of Emerald Bay
Not for the faint of heart, the road along the West Shore of Lake Tahoe meanders atop old glacial moraines and through sugar pine forests before arriving at Emerald Bay, one of the most photographed spots in all the world. For a real treat, make lunch or dinner plans at the West Shore Café across from Homewood Mountain Resort; delectable s’mores, signature hot toddies and a captivating lakefront setting await. Twist some throttle on a Zephyr Cove Resort Snowmobile Tour
Boasting a new fleet of powerful yet easy-to-use snow machines, Zephyr Cove Resort offers a variety of guided snowmobile tours on more than 45 miles of groomed trails at elevations of more than 9,000 feet. The two-hour Scenic Lakeview Tour is one of the most popular trips while the Ultimate Experience Tour lets riders experience the thrill of riding fresh powder. Clothing and helmet rentals available, free transportation from most major lodging properties.
Free your heel at the Kirkwood Cross Country and Snowshoe Center
Get to know Kirkwood’s kinder, gentler side as the resort offers more than 80km of groomed cross-country and snowshoe trails set amidst old growth forest, babbling brooks and polished granite domes. Access is via two separate trailheads with three warming huts and both directional and interpretive signs to guide your way. After your workout, reward yourself with some hot chocolate fireside at the day lodge or step back in time at the Historic Kirkwood Inn.
Go boulder hopping on the beach at Sand Harbor
Even during the heart of winter, the beaches of Tahoe’s East Shore are oftentimes free of snow allowing visitors an up-close-and-personal view of the lake’s crystal clear waters. Sand Harbor State Park is home to 55 acres of long, sandy beaches along with a well-maintained nature trail that winds through secluded coves, forested points, and interesting rock formations all affording panoramic views of Lake Tahoe.