Mike L. said:

>I'm looking for some professional advice!!!

>I'm probably gonna move out to the Lake Tahoe region for some time, and
>join a friend already out at Alpine Meadows.  Anyone want to give me their
>two cents worth on this area?   I need to make some decent money doing
>whatever job a find, but I of course will have to spend my fair share of
>time on the mtns.  I'm sure many of you have or at least pondered the idea
>of moving out west at one time - any pointers?

>For the record - I'll probably move back to VT in a few years to brush up
>on my skills.

I skied the Tahoe area 2 years ago. Alpine was one of my most favorite
spots there. Don't miss the off-piste areas as well as the various gullies.
Here's the post I made from the archives, I only wish I were moving there,
even if it meant living in my van at one of the local parking lots (hope
this doesn't break any skivter laws):

...Subject: Lake Tahoe Trip Report

 ...  For people who haven't been to the area, I highly recommend it, as
 there is lots to do even if you don't ski.

 As far as the ski report, it was absolutely great!  I did need a fresh
 of undergarments on occasion however, due to the gnarl factor.  I swore to
 myself I would never ever take a double diamond run out west again but
 each day I broke that promise.

 Here's a brief synopsis:

 Day 1:  Got into Reno around 11:00am made our way up Rt. 431 and 3000 ft
 elevation to MT Rose, started skiing at 1:00pm in 14" of fresh powder.
 Incredible face shots (of snow) all day.  Got severe vertigo the first
 chairlift up mountain but soon eased due to great sunny conditions.
 Managed to hit a few boulders with my skis but luckily they (the skis)
 didn't break.

 Day 2:  Alpine Meadows

 great sunny day.  This place was what they mean by extreme skiing.  We
 went down a couple of trails (I remember Counterweight gully as one but
 blacked out on the rest) that should have required the use of ropes and
 parachutes.  Beat the hell out of my knees on the double diamond gullies
 and saw incredible views of Lake Tahoe.  Found up to a foot of fresh
 powder by hiking to the top of the mountain top and heading into the
 untouched back bowl - beautiful (at least 1000 acres added by climbing to
 extreme skier's left and right; the juice is well worth the squeeze)!
 Toughest run of the day was when I went through the back woods bowl about
 5 miles deep and came out by a condo with a 25 ft drop-off to the road.
 Had to remove skis and jump down a chute the width of one person, 20 ft
 down and came out on someone's porch then a one mile walk back to the ski

 Day 3:  Sugar Bowl

 Another sunny 40 ish day up Donner pass with about 30 ft of snow
 (incredible how snow covered entire 1st floor and part of second floor of
 everyplace past Truckee.  This place was listed as 50% expert and they
 mean it.  Triple diamond cornices, beautiful bowls, great snow conditions
 and lots of wood skiing (where the best powder snow is found).  A little
 worn out from the extreme of Alpine so stayed on trail where you didn't
 need crampons.

 Day 4:  Squaw Valley

 site of 1960 Olympics, another sunny warm day, > 4000 acres of terrain and
 back to the extreme gnarl again.  This place really put the fear of god
 in you but a lot of beautiful skiing through rock gardens, glades, above
 treeline bowls and the "traverse of death" to the backbowl full of powder.
 I was too wimpy to try the bungy jump but going up the cable car 1000ft
 over the ground was enough for me.  Also had a lot of nice steep groomed
 runs. on of them I had to rescue a snowboarder who was holding onto her
 board for dear life as she slipped down the mountain.  Had to position my
 skis to stop her from falling while holding onto the snowboard and working
 my way across the trail where she could climb back to supposed safety, 15
 min. later I hooked up with the rest of the squad.  Ended up black and
 blue after this one but I was a better person inside for the experience.
 Best run of the day: an afternoon jaunt to the Rock Garden (a.k.a. THE
 BONEYARD) off of the broken arrow lift, for super steep boulder runs in
 the sweet spring snow.

 Day 5: Northstar at Tahoe

 Relatively easy mountain, low cost, lots of woods and lots of dolts
 (geeks). Geared more for families no real extreme skiing here which was
 nice at this
 juncture.  Another sunny 40 degree sunny, nice mellow day.
 Best run: off piste excursion to Rolling Stone trail, (well actually a
 sign posted on a tree in the middle of the woods) for some up close and
 personal encounters with some Western Pines.

 Day 6: Heavenly

 As the name implies it really was Heavenly.  Snow conditions were
 absolutely perfect packed powder and stashes of untracked powder in the
 woods.  No ice found which actually was present in a few areas where the
 sun melted snow during the day then froze up at night and morning.  Spent
 the first half of the day in Nevada over at Mott Canyon in Killebrew bowl.
 Went down one trail that is the steepest I have ever seen in my life.
 Came upon the "chute of death", guy in front of me froze and almost
 fainted, tried to find escape route, after 15 min. no luck so had to go
 down.  Incredible avalanches with every jump turn but made it down in one
 piece.  I should have known it was tough when the trail entrance was
 blocked with a skull and crossbones sign stating "SUPER EXPERTS ONLY!!!".
 Since I'll never take that trail again it was truly a once in a lifetime
 experience.  Actually took some pictures while perched on a ledge halfway
 up, hope they come out cause I couldn't force myself to look as I took the
 pictures.  Next trail: Snake Pit; not quite as steep but definitely a good
 pitch.  As I sent avalanches down with every turn I could see a little
 yellow speck bouncing down the bottom of the trail. Turned out to be Jerry
 D. who lost a ski and finished the last 1000 ft of the mogul run on his
 face.  Then off to the California side, more great snow, sun and 30mph
 wind on top.  Great tree runs and the only way back to the lodge: double
 diamond 2000ft vertical mogul run.  The trail seemed to go right into Lake
 Tahoe.  After doing this twice I was thoroughly trashed and ready for our
 usual after ski Jacuzzi or hot springs with moderate amounts of adult

 Day 7:  Kirkwood

 What can I say? Another beautiful day, little windy on top of the mountain
 peaks at 10,000 ft level.  Great empty snow bowls with a little hiking and
 of course more extreme double and triple diamond runs.  Its amazing that
 they can actually groom some of the steep runs.  Had a little trouble when
 one of the guys (Gary E.) called me a wussy if I didn't follow him down a
 cliff run, but after skiing Heavenly I didn't think I had anymore to
 prove.  Needless to say an hour later he made it down after the ski patrol
 rescued him after loosing a ski on the precipice. After this we drove out
 into the mountains to Grover hot springs.  It's operated by the National
 Forest Service located in the middle of nowhere.  It was great to soak up
 the  hot mineral water (nary a trace of Sulfur) under the deep western
 night skies, where the deer and the antelope...

 Day 8:  Sierra at Tahoe

 Great place with tremendous glade skiing lots of diverse terrain and
 plenty of fun parks.  Fun parks are man made obstacles designed to make
 your ski runs more diverse and pleasurable.  In fact what they did was
 scare the living spit out of you after becoming airborne like the guy who
 put the rocket
 booster on his chevy impala.  Anyway I think I flew higher here than any
 other time in my life other than
 on an airplane.  The rest of the time here was spent picking our way
 through the woods, sunny open rock
 gardens and general groomed runs where most of the normal people were.
 What a way to top off the trip.
 No crowds (since Route 50 to Sacramento is still closed) plus the added
 advantage of 2 for 1 ski tickets.  The only problem was on the last run of
  the day when Mr. E. tried performing his triple klutz maneuver at about
 60mph.  He scored high for difficulty and artistic impression but lost it
 for technical merit.  After a few gratuitous photo ops and a trip to first
  aid, for oxygen, we headed back to the Casino's for one last night of
 loosing money and cheap dinner.

 Day 9 & 10

 Couldn't hook up with the early shift going to Homewood ski area or back
 to Heavenly, so took a trip on the Tahoe Queen for a tour of the lake,
 which was a nice change.  Then we packed up and went to another hot
 springs called Wally World (more posh resort with seven whirlpools at
 various temps with a little sulfur smell).  Then rounded up the wagons (97
 Suburban) and went through the glitz of Carson City to the former homes of
 the Cartwrights.
 Yes, the very same Bucket O' Blood Saloon and others (100 in all) that
 Little Joe and Hoss used to frequent.  By that time it was like a ghost
 town but it was neat to walk along the wood floors I had seen hundreds of
 times before in the movies.  Then off to Reno and the redeye from 2am to
 9am and lots of turbulence.  Well, this is only about 1% of what the trip
 was like but I hope you get an idea.

 PS.  If you're ever up in Donner pass again remember to hurry on along,
 don't take no cutoffs and stay away from Mott Canyon!

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