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Northstar at Tahoe


Epic Pass

Northstar at Tahoe


Epic Pass
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Lodging &
Lift Tickets
 

Pro tip: Northstar has become the Deer Valley of the Lake Tahoe area, complete with a Ritz and dining options that can satisfy all kinds of demanding Bay Area palates. Staying in the village here offers an incredibly convenient experience, and families love the gear wagons that are supplied free at the parking lot. The mountain's best features are its generous and picturesque glades, which can satisfy experts with their deep stashes.  MORE

Core Strenghts

Northstar at Tahoe
Travel Ease
77.1
Overall
73.1
Snow Volume
53.8
Overall
Overall PAF Score

Overall
Rank

46

Rank in
Region

6

Rank in
State

6

This resort is often compared with:

Squaw Valley
Sierra-at-Tahoe
Alpine Meadows
Today's
Best
Deals
Today's Best Deals
$
Northstar at Tahoe
Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe
4/5  stars

9/19 - 4/15
min nights: 5
book by:  11/11
$
Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe
4/5 stars
9/19 - 4/15
min nights: 5
book by:  11/11
5th night free lodging


1/17 - 3/29
min nights: 4
book by:  1/31
$
1/17 - 3/29
min nights: 4
book by:  1/31
4th night free lodging
Northstar Resort
2/5  stars

11/1 - 4/30
min nights: 1
book by:  4/28
$
Northstar Resort
2/5 stars
11/1 - 4/30
min nights: 1
book by:  4/28
Best Available Rate Guaranteed
Best time for snow at
Northstar at Tahoe
Snow quality compared w/
rest of North American resorts
Last 10 Days of Snowfall at Northstar at Tahoe

Powder
Forecast

Powder Forecast
Thursday
Day
0"
Night
0"
Friday
Day
0"
Night
0-1"
Saturday
Day
0-1"
Night
0-1"
Sunday
Day
0"
Night
2-4"
Monday
Day
0"
Night
0"
Powderfares - 6"+ snow on the way! Go now!
Powderfares!
6"+ of snow
on the way
Go now!
LAX to RNO
depart Fri Feb 24
return Tue Feb 28
United
$496
SEA to RNO
depart Fri Feb 24
return Tue Feb 28
Alaska
$522
EWR to RNO
depart Fri Feb 24
return Mon Feb 27
United
$567
MSP to RNO
depart Fri Feb 24
return Mon Feb 27
United
$671
BOS to RNO
depart Fri Feb 24
return Mon Feb 27
United
$699
IAD to RNO
depart Fri Feb 24
return Mon Feb 27
United
$701
SFO to RNO
depart Sat Feb 25
return Mon Feb 27
United
$708
DFW to RNO
depart Fri Feb 24
return Mon Feb 27
United
$740
ORD to RNO
depart Fri Feb 24
return Mon Feb 27
United
$863
IAH to RNO
depart Fri Feb 24
return Tue Feb 28
United
$993
ATL to RNO
depart Fri Feb 24
return Mon Feb 27
United
$1,029
True Snow: 307" per year
Snow Quality Rank

113

Accounts for resorts' snow quantity, moisture content, latitude, elevation, and slope aspects.

Dump Potential Rank

88

Northstar at Tahoe is ranked No. 88 in North America for its total snowfall during an average season.

Historical Powder Odds
Daily Lottery

% of days with more than 6" of snow

12.2%

Extended Stay

% of months with more than 90" of snow

25.2%

Drought Threat

% of months with less than 30" of snow

37.8%

*Special thanks to Tony Crocker and Bestsnow.net.

Dump Potential Rank

88

Northstar at Tahoe is ranked No. 88 in North America for its total snowfall during an average season.

Snow
Quality
Rank

113

Accounts for resorts' snow quantity, moisture content, latitude, elevation, and slope aspects.

Total Snow Score

This score accounts for total snow quantity, its moisture content, the resort's latitude, elevation, and its slope aspects, which affect total snow preservation.

Trail Breakdown

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Vertical Drop

2280 ft

8610 ft
Base Elevation: 6330 ft

Slope Aspects

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All the details
The Skiing

Northstar is making leaps to compete with its neighbors to the west, possibly in an attempt to bring its winter resume up to speed with its summertime reputation as some of the best lift-serviced mountain biking terrain in CA. Thanks to the deep pockets of its owners, Vail Resorts, Northstar is steadily growing into one of the area's biggest winter destinations in Lake Tahoe. Northstar also happens to be one of the poshest resorts around; it’s Tahoe’s answer to Deer Valley and Beaver Creek.

The new development at Northstar includes plenty of real estate, but it will also benefit all skiers and riders. Northstar now has more skiable acreage than Alpine Meadows, which wasn’t the case just five years ago. Most of this is of the intermediate, groomed variety. But what Northstar lacks in expert terrain, it makes up for it with well-groomed, easily accessible, wide-open trails. A great combination for beginners looking to up their game, or intermediates wanting to refine their S-curves, K-Curves and bumper dumping.

For those looking for advanced or expert terrain, it’s certainly true that better options exist elsewhere in North Lake. If you find yourself on the slopes here, however, check out the backside of Lookout Mountain where you’re sure to find the vittles for which you hunger: moguls, glades, and some steeper terrain. Catch this area in the midst of a Pacific storm and you’ve hit the California jackpot. Chances are you’ll have a lot of powder to yourself, with the Martis Camp Express chair your personal heli-pad.

Did we mention Northstar also has the most snowmaking coverage in North Lake? Not too shabby, as while it can snow in feet here, it can also go dry, especially in the early season. This helps mitigate the resort’s lower elevation and the warm Lake Tahoe sun. It’s also needed to support the resorts bustling terrain parks and its infamous 500-foot long, 22-foot high superpipe. Did we mention Northstar is a snowboarder’s paradise? Maybe we didn’t. We’re mostly skiers here. If you ride at Northstar, strap in, son. And pull up your pants.

Must do when at Northstar: Check out Mt. Pluto at the top of Comstock Express to grab that photo with the lake view. You’ll make your family back home in Vermont jealous. Plus it’ll make a great Christmas card.

Epicurean tip: After your storm-skiing escapade, refuel at the free s’mores handout at the ice skating rink in the village (usually given out on the weekends). Need more carbs, you say? There’s S’moresapalooza in late spring. Details are too gluttonous to repeat here, so you’ll have to Google it yourself.

Rumor Alert: Between you, us and the largest alpine lake in the world, we hear that Lake Tahoe resort owners are angling for a bid to host the 2022 Olympics; if you didn’t know, the Olympics were there once before, at Squaw Valley in 1960.

Town

As with most Lake Tahoe resorts, the resort is actually the town, and the next town down the road is the stopover point on your way home from the resort. These towns are a great place to fill your tank and down a Tecate and a fish taco before your white-knuckled descent down I-80. We don’t recommend doing anything else in them. So, rather than describe the same towns that service multiple Lake Tahoe resorts, we present the offerings of Northstar Village proper, which truly are plentiful, albeit mostly out of our price range. Take it from the horse’s mouth, a snippet from which we present here without comment:

“For the modern family that prefers substance with a unique, laid-back style, Northstar California Resort combines California cool with high-end luxury, on-mountain exhilaration with a sophisticated alpine village atmosphere...those who come to Northstar know what they're looking for. Sometimes it's adventure, sometimes it's to learn, sometimes it's to relax in a welcoming place with family and friends. No matter what that experience is, they'll find it to be exactly the way it should be.”

On-the-go French hot dogs and chocolate martinis are also available in the village. If that doesn’t say “sophisticated alpine village atmosphere,” then you’re simply not part of the kind of modern family that "prefers substance."


A few words on the Snow at Northstar at Tahoe

Northstar has good snow frequency of 13.1% of winter days with 6 inches or more and 26% of winter months with 90 inches or more, but also endures 37% of winter months with less than 30 inches. Snowfall is less than at areas farther west on the Sierra Crest, but Northstar has a better snowmaking system. Northstar can see occasional rain with its 6,400 foot base elevation. Northstar's Backside and Lookout trees are the places to be in North Tahoe on big storm days when most terrain at Squaw and Alpine is closed due to wind, visibility or avalanche control. Sierra average snow density of 12% is not the blower of the Rockies but easily managed on modern fat rockered skis.

Accumulation and Preservation

With its mostly moderate terrain Northstar averages 72% open at Christmas and is less than half open in 30% of seasons and less than ÂĽ open at Christmas in the worst 15% of seasons. Northstar is about half north-facing but tops out at 8,600 feet, so overall snow preservation is about average for the Sierra.