I just started skiing this season, but Iíve already been to a few of the ski resorts in the Northern California, Lake Tahoe area. As I go to more resorts Iíll add more reviews. So check out this area often during ski season.
Sierra-at-Tahoe: I learned to ski here with their 3-day Learn-to-Ski package, which was a really sweet deal at $139 for lift tickets, rentals, and lessons. The lessons were great, I recommend Lewis. On the third day I was doing all the green runs with ease and also tried a blue run. Sierraís green and blue runs are much more difficult than the greens and blues at other resorts. The rentals are also great. You get decent equipment and their system is automated with a helpful staff. You end up spending less time renting and more time on the snow. Overall Iíd recommend Sierra-at-Tahoe becuase of itís affordability and fun mountain.
Heavenly: I have now skied here three days and each day was more fun than the previous. Heavenlyís mountain is gianormous. It literally occupies two states. Itís a lot of fun skiing between California and Nevada. The runs are quite easy, with the blue runs at heavenly being equivalent to the greens at Sierra, so this is a great beginner resort. The biggest drawback of Heavenly is itís price, but if you can get lift tickets for under $50, definitely go, but rent your skis elsewhere. Heavenlyís rental system is horrible.
Alpine Meadows: This resort is always affordable, which is a good plus. The slopes are very steep, which can be intimidating to a new skier. Alpine consists of a lot of challenging blue runs and some crazy black diamonds. There is also an awesome view of Lake Tahoe from the north. The only big complaint I have was that a lift went down for about 20 minutes leaving us stranded in an inescapable part of the mountain
About the Reviewer: I first started skiing in December of 2005. I currently ski all blue and green runs. Iím starting to have fun going into the trees and getting some hops every now and then. Iíve tried some black diamond, but I still need to work on my technique and confidence before I can really have some fun on the diamond runs.