...I'd rather ride some vertical, but to each their own
Here is what surprised me most about Tahoe...while it is AWESOME, and I loved every mountain I rode (I think I've only missed Donner and Sierra at this point), there really isn't that much difference in actual VERTICAL. Heavenly, for instance, boasts the highest peak in Tahoe at over 10,000', but virtually all of the ridable trails are only on the top half of the mountain. Yes, you can ride down to the parking lot on the California side, but that is just one trail (plus the diamond bump run). The rest of the mountain is up top, and has no more vertical than the good mountains in Vermont.
Mt. Rose is an awesome mountain that no one ever mentions...the highest base lodge at Tahoe. You START at over 8,000 feet, but still there is only about 2,000' of vertical. You'll get altitude sickness if you're not acclimated, but still only a couple of thousand feet. Stowe, Jay Peak, Sugarbush, and other Vermont mountains have the same vertical as most of the Tahoe mountains.
The funniest thing I experienced going out west is that while we were riding and loving it (our first trip was 2007, early January, no snow) the locals hated it, and constantly apologized for the horrible conditions...but it was POWDER to us! When we'd mention we usually ride Vermont, we got an odd kind of respect. We're the hardcore...if you can ride Vermont, the Ice Coast, you're hard core. Out at Tahoe they're all used to riding powder in t-shirts and hoodies. LOL!
It's all a matter of perspective.