The only thing better than a trip full of friends and great food? One where I get to be active while doing it! TBH, it's a huge bonus if the whole trip is active because I tell myself that means more snacks and sips at the end of the day, you with me? My recent trip up north to Lake Tahoe was pretty much perfectiong—active all day, relaxing all night, and lots of amazing weather.
With an El Nino season as good as this one, it's been (almost) hard to have a bad ski day but, as I've become less of a daredevil skiier, I'm all about Spring skiing. As a native Californian, I like to think we're the state that knows how to do Spring skiing right—Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows is the unofficial Spring skiing capital after all. Yeah, I'm definitely partial, but, here's why:
The Weather's So Much More Manageable
Blame it on having a low cold threshold (I did grow up in Southern California after all), but I'm of the mindset that skiing is way more fun when I'm not shivering. With temps anywhere from mid 30s to 50s, Spring skiing means can focus on getting to the next chair lift instead of restocking on heating packets.
There's (Almost) No Bulky Clothing
Depending on your tolerance, the weather can be pleasant enough you could ski in your yoga clothes—heck some people are even out there in bikini tops and jean shirts! No matter how you slice it, having fewer layers makes the whole sport feel way less burdensome.
It's Like Two Seasons At Once
Possibly my favorite thing of all is that Spring skiing means that you get the best of the cold months (ie snow on the mountain) and the warmer months (little snow at the base). So you can get great skiing at the higher elevations but dine in the sunshine at the lower elevations.
Which Means Two Sports In One Day
There Aren't Lines (Especially On Weekdays)
True, you're probably not going to have as much fresh snow in the Spring as you would in the winter, but, the big upside is that you have fewer people around so you can get in a lot of runs.
The Mountain Guides Have The Intel
One downfall of Spring skiing is that the terrain conditions can be vastly different from day to day—all the more reason to splure on a mountain guide to help you find the best conditions. At Squaw Alpine, I skiied with the North Face Mountain Guides who challenged me to hike into some runs that we're byfar the best skiing of the trip.
But Back To The Weather Because Those Skies Are So Clear
The Spring does mean fewer storms so you're more likely to get super clear, blue skies. And when you up at Lake Tahoe that means crazy amazing views of that crystal blue lake!
Hot Tub (Or Ski) In Your Bikini
Aside from the terrain, one of the legendary things at Squaw Alpine is the High Camp Hot Tub. Since I was little, I remember skiing the mountain and passing partiers tucked into the hot tub at all hours and during all weather. But in the Springtime, you can hot tub it in your bathing suit and actually get a tan!
Apres Ski While It's Light Out
Ending the day with a hot tub sesh is a major plus but the day is not officially over until you have done a little apres ski. Each resort has its own apres ski vibes (some more chichi others more country) and the vibes at Squaw are chill with lots of beer, preferably at Le Chamois or Rocker.
Get Reservations At The Best Restaurants
One of my favorite places to eat up in Lake Tahoe is the Plumpjack Cafe where there's an award-winning wine list, creative cocktails, and farm-to-table fare, with the perfect mix of high-end hospitality and laidback ski town vibes.
My trip was sponsored by Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows but all content, ideas, and words are my own. Thanks for supporting these sponsors who allow us to keep Salt & Wind up and running. // Photos courtesy of Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows