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post #1 of 39 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 10:54 AM Thread Starter
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Tahoe by the day? Can y'all help me?

Hey y'all. I've been googling my fingers off, but can't really figure Tahoe out.

I'm in the South Bay...and when I'm lucky I get a day off (typically Sunday) to drive up to Tahioe. My strategy so far has been to leave work Saturday at 5:30, land in Reno at 9:30, drive to Northstar at 6 AM and then drive back to South Bay at night. It just doesnt seem like there's any easier accommodation in North Tahoe. I think ny other option would be to stay in Roseville, get there at like 8 after work and then head to the mountains like 5 ish. I just cant seem to find anything affordable or not sold out in Truckee itself.
The Roseville option may be easier if I didnt go to Northstar. I'm not in love with that mountain and its pricey for what you get. I've been thinking SugarBowl because its $20 cheaper, but then I read crappy reviews of the place. I dont need resorty stuff. i just need lifts and snow (I wont lie though....a latte at 7 AM is nice.) Is SugarBowl totally fine for just boarding blues and easier blacks? Or is it really dumpy? If I go I'm getting the CORE card ($19 and $15 off lift tickets) so I'm locking myself in to going twice.

I've been thinking of trying South Tahoe but I dont even know where to start. It looks like a faster drive on the map but less highway...so it may be longer in actuality. Kirkwood and Heavenly are there. And I do have points on my PEAKS card already. So if I go south I can add to those. I'm just worried about drive time and traffic getting back.

In a perfect world I can find a cheaper Marriott brand. I do 200 nights in a hotel for work a year. I LOVE point bagging!

Anyone else doing Tahoe by the day? Whats your strategy?
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post #2 of 39 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 11:18 AM
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I do mostly day trips when conditions are good...2:45 from Pleasanton to Kirkwood...shred all day and drive back. Home by 7 usually.

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post #3 of 39 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 11:36 AM
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Kings beach is close. $70/night.... Tahoe inn
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post #4 of 39 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by EastCoastChris View Post
Hey y'all. I've been googling my fingers off, but can't really figure Tahoe out.

I'm in the South Bay...and when I'm lucky I get a day off (typically Sunday) to drive up to Tahioe. My strategy so far has been to leave work Saturday at 5:30, land in Reno at 9:30, drive to Northstar at 6 AM and then drive back to South Bay at night. It just doesnt seem like there's any easier accommodation in North Tahoe. I think ny other option would be to stay in Roseville, get there at like 8 after work and then head to the mountains like 5 ish. I just cant seem to find anything affordable or not sold out in Truckee itself.
The Roseville option may be easier if I didnt go to Northstar. I'm not in love with that mountain and its pricey for what you get. I've been thinking SugarBowl because its $20 cheaper, but then I read crappy reviews of the place. I dont need resorty stuff. i just need lifts and snow (I wont lie though....a latte at 7 AM is nice.) Is SugarBowl totally fine for just boarding blues and easier blacks? Or is it really dumpy? If I go I'm getting the CORE card ($19 and $15 off lift tickets) so I'm locking myself in to going twice.

I've been thinking of trying South Tahoe but I dont even know where to start. It looks like a faster drive on the map but less highway...so it may be longer in actuality. Kirkwood and Heavenly are there. And I do have points on my PEAKS card already. So if I go south I can add to those. I'm just worried about drive time and traffic getting back.

In a perfect world I can find a cheaper Marriott brand. I do 200 nights in a hotel for work a year. I LOVE point bagging!

Anyone else doing Tahoe by the day? Whats your strategy?
Hi Chris, You can stay at Hostel Tahoe at Kings Beach. You can take Northstar shuttle from there if you want.

There is another hostel named Tinker Station near SugarBowl.

You need to book early. I like both places. The owners are very nice.

SugarBowl is fine. Jeremy Jones rides there sometimes.

Kirkwood is quicker to get to than north shore. It is not freeway but much less traffic. Carson City will be your best option if you want to stay overnight.

Last edited by hellside; 03-11-2013 at 12:50 PM.
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post #5 of 39 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 12:49 PM
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Just wondering, where did you read crappy reviews of Sugar Bowl? It sounds like it would suit you just fine. Much better for the frequent day-tripper than Northstar (which imo, is like Disneyland for tourists). Sugar Bowl's a medium-sized mountain, not a dump at all, affordable, good trails, nice staff, super easy drive on the I-80 from the Bay Area/Sacramento/foothills area. More of a locals and Bay Area day-tripper vibe than Northstar. Sugar Bowl also has the best women's restroom I've seen among NLT resorts The only drawback to SB is that because it's the closest "big" resort to the Bay Area, it does get crowded on weekends, especially with ski/snowboard team kids and their families.

I don't know much about staying in Roseville, but you could also stay in the Sacramento area; more business hotels to choose from, not too far a drive to Tahoe.

Last edited by Kauila; 03-11-2013 at 01:00 PM. Reason: Never mind, I was wrong, there is no Marriott in King's Beach. Only Hampton Suites (pricey) and Holiday Inn.
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post #6 of 39 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 05:17 PM Thread Starter
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A guy I work with hates the place...but I hate that guy I work with. He's totally a Northstar type. And I'm really not. But there's another travel forum I looked at...Cali not Tahoe specific. People we're busting on the place for being run down. I dont care about asthetics...but since its closest to the Bay it seems like if chairs start shutting down or if "high speed" quads and 6s arent really high speed...the day can get crowded and miserable. A hostel right there sounds good though. Or a 2 hour drive from SacMo/Roseville etc will work too.

SugarBowl seems to have a lot of local devotees on On the Snow. Which is cool. But it kinda makes me think of this place back home called Saddleback. Locals defend it like crazy because its got great snow (sometimes) but its all Tbars and broke down doubles. Its not too too bad if you are skiing but its hell on a board. Not a way I wanna spend 50 bucks. But I'm getting the sense that SugarBowl isnt gonna be duct tape and tar paper shacks. Hey I'm from Maine..we're a grubby people. And yes we use duct tape to fix tbars. So I just gotta ask.

The Kirkwood, Carson City option sounds promising too. I could do that..get to Kirkwood Sunday AM and be home by 10 PM sunday. That would work (adding to the Peaks card!) I'm not really married to corporate hotel chains. Its just if I do one more night in a Marriot by April 15th I get 2 free (its Mega Bonus time of year!) And they give me the room/suite upgrade because I did 77 nights of 175 road nights last year at Marriott. Omg I love comps and upgrades. I really am a point bagging junkie.

I guess my original idea was pick a mountain and learn while I'm out in Cali. But I'm ready to ditch Northstar. I'm just afraid of the logistics. But there's only one way to find ouy and thats to give it a go. Makes me feel waaaay better to hear people day tripping south.
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post #7 of 39 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 06:36 PM
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Try the bay area ski bus -- will pick you up in sunnyvale at 5am and have you back home by 9pm. They also feed you breakfast and snacks and you watch movies on the ride back. You don't have to drive, you can sleep in the morning, and you're back for dinner.

Just google it.
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post #8 of 39 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 07:19 PM
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Originally Posted by EastCoastChris View Post
I'm getting the sense that SugarBowl isnt gonna be duct tape and tar paper shacks. Hey I'm from Maine..we're a grubby people. And yes we use duct tape to fix tbars. So I just gotta ask.
Don't worry, you won't experience duct tape and tar paper shacks unless you overshoot the entrance to the Judah-side parking lot of Sugar Bowl on the right, and accidentally turn into the parking lot to Donner Ski Ranch on the left (across the street from SB, where enthusiastic parking lot attendants eagerly wave you in). But then again, Donner Ski Ranch has its fans, too
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post #9 of 39 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 09:31 PM
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Originally Posted by KIRKRIDER View Post
I do mostly day trips when conditions are good...2:45 from Pleasanton to Kirkwood...shred all day and drive back. Home by 7 usually.
2 hrs and 45 min from pleasanton to kirkwood even on a powder day? (sketch roads and chains)...sounds more like a 4 hr drive

anyway, I don't know how you guys do it. My local is 2 hrs on a hardpack day and about 3 hrs on a heavy powder day. I tried the one day thing a few times but it was killer on the back with all the driving and shredding first to last chair. I do whatever it takes to be able to spend the night after the first day riding...then I can ride the next day and drive home with infinitely less fatigue.
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post #10 of 39 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 11:30 AM Thread Starter
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I googled the ski bus and I dont think I can do it. If anything went wrong like I got lost and missed it.. omg I would be screwed.
My boss out here is clinically insane. You should have seen what happened to me a few weeks ago when my flight from JFK back to Cali was canceled (been flying home every other weekend.) I get stuck in Tahoe and I am scrubbing her toilets with a toothbrush for real.
I need like...nothing...to go wrong. But otherwise...awesome tip. I'll spread the word.

In case it helps anyone out...
I ended up going with SugarBowl. I just booked a Marriott room in Rocklin just off 80 (that earns me 2 free nights next season! BOOM!) Google tells me its an hour and 17 minutes from the mountain. Previously I had been driving to Reno after work and driving back to Truckee (about 50 mins) so it doesnt add THAT much in the AM. But if I get out at 5:30 I should be in bed by 8 instead of 10 which will make getti v up at 5 easier. End of my day I am heading straight back to South Bay with the rest of the Tahoe traffic! I find though that if I am on first chair I feel ok leaving at 3:30.
So I'll give this line of attack a go. See what happens. I'll post a trip report.
Maybe Easter weekend I'll try Kirkwood.
Not too many more weekends after that. But I'll keep going long as the snow holds up.
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