The Heavenly Resort, right across the street from the casinos of South Lake Tahoe or hotels of Heavenly Village, controls an impressive collection of top billings: largest resort in California (4,800 acres), longest vertical drop in the state (3,500 feet), highest summit (10,067) and the West Coast's largest snow-making system, which is capable of covering 70 percent of Heavenly's trails. Thirty lifts span two states, hovering on the California/Nevada line and commanding magnificent views of Lake Tahoe.
Heavenly Mountain Resort
Corner of Wildwood and Saddle
South Lake Tahoe, California 96150
Twelve miles west of South Lake Tahoe, the 46 trails on 2,000 acres and 2,212 vertical drop of Sierra -at-Tahoe Resort comprise a great variety of difficulty levels in a smaller, informal environment with a feeling of remoteness.
1111 Sierra-at-Tahoe Road
Twin Bridges, California 95735
Another southern resort, Kirkwood is nestled 35 minutes southwest of South Lake Tahoe's all-night party. With a 9,800-foot summit and 12 lifts opening access to 65 trails with more than a 2,000-foot vertical drop, Kirkwood lays claim to impressive snowfall (804 inches in 2005/2006), steep cliff drops and cornice skiing from its broad top ridge line.
Kirkwood Mountain Resort
1501 Kirkwood Meadows Drive
Kirkwood, California 95646
Squaw Valley USA
The 1960 Winter Olympics created the impetus for turning Squaw Valley into a world-class resort, boasting 34 lifts that unlock 170 runs over 4,000 acres.
Squaw Valley Ski Corporation
P.O. Box 2007
1960 Squaw Valley Road
Olympic Valley California 96146
More than 100 designated runs on 2,400 acres challenge a skier's endurance at Alpine Meadows, just six miles northwest of Tahoe City off Highway 89. The slopes of 11 of its 13 lifts are equipped for snow-making. Alpine is venerated for its open powder bowls, especially Estelle Bowl, and is generally cheaper than its flashy brother, Squaw Valley.
PO Box 5279
2600 Alpine Meadows Road
Tahoe City, California 96145
Northstar-at-Tahoe, sister resort to Sierra-at-Tahoe and about 30 minutes west of Reno near Tuckee, California, is considered a "family ski area" for its open, "cruiser" runs and wind-protected location, but it has plenty of variety on 89 runs off 17 lifts over 2,904. acres.
P.O. Box 129
Truckee, California 96160
Close to Reno, a mere 25-minute drive, and 10 minutes away from the North Shore, Mt. Rose has the highest base elevation of the Tahoe resorts, and its
Mt. Rose chutes are claimed to be "the steepest, longest inbound slopes in the country."
Mt. Rose - Ski Tahoe
22222 Mt. Rose Highway
Reno, Nevada 89511
All of these resorts have lodging, cross country skiing trails and mountain biking routes.