One of the leading family skiing experiences around Lake Tahoe can be found at Northstar California. The expansive mountain measures 2,904 skiable acreage with a vertical drop of 2,280 feet, and its wide-open front side is a favorite of families, youth and beginner skiers and snowboarders. Two-time Olympic gold medalist, professional snowboarder and skateboarder Shaun White calls Northstar California his home mountain and training resort.
Skiers and snowboarders will find a good mix of trails at Northstar, with 13 percent ranking as beginner runs and 27 percent designated as black diamonds. The majority of the mountain’s trails, 60 percent, are considered intermediate, which is partly why the resort is so popular with families. Despite its varied selection of blue runs, however, Northstar also has a reputation for its fantastic tree skiing and deep powder stashes, particularly on the back side. The mountain is also known for its terrain parks, which have ranked among the top 10 in North America. Extreme skiers and riders will find over 45 rails, jibs and boxes plus 50 jumps ranging in size, as well as a 420-foot Super Pipe and Burton Progression Park. The mountain itself features more than 89 trails that are accessed by no less than 18 lifts. An express gondola takes skiers and riders from the village to the base lodge. One “six pack” express chondola, six quad express chairs, two triple chairs, two tow lifts and five magic carpets service the rest of the mountain. In addition to its downhill and park options, the resort offers a cross-country center, tubing, ice skating, and much more.
Over the last five years, the resort has been in a growth phase with the addition of the mid-mountain Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe and more than $30 million in capital improvements including the Promised Land Express high-speed detachable quad chairlift and the stunning new Zephyr Lodge. Northstar just completed renovation of the cabins on its Big Springs Gondola. They welcome Ripperoo Riglet Park for tis first full season of operation, featuring specialized terrain to help 3-6 year olds learn to snowboard sooner.
Guests can drop-in on the resort's 22-foot custom halfpipe designed for Olympic Gold Medalist Shaun White, as well as challenge themselves against the race times of World Champion skier Lindsey Vonn thanks fot he latest generation of Vail Resorts' EpicMix technology, EpicRacing. Northstar California hosted the Sprint U.S. Snowboarding and Visa U.S. Freeskiinig Grand Prix January 9-12, 2014, which was one of the last Olympic qualifying events before the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.