Sierra resorts offer deals on snow fun

By: Gloria Young Journal Staff Writer
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Skiers and boarders will be able to stretch their recreation dollars a little further this season. Sierra resorts are offering deals on everything from lift tickets to lodging, parking and food. The learn-to-ski-or-ride programs, some as little as $25, are a particularly good deal, according to Jessica Van Pernis, Northstar at Tahoe media spokeswoman. “Usually they’re closer to $90 or $100,” she said. The discounts provide a boost that benefits everyone, Rachael Woods, spokeswoman for Alpine Meadows and Homewood Mountain Resort, said Wednesday. “It’s indicative that Tahoe and winter recreation areas in general are really striving to keep skiing and snowboarding affordable,” Woods said. At Boreal Mountain Resort, which is open this weekend, there are bargains for beginners as well as veterans on the slopes. “We’re seeing a huge fallout in baby boomers passing through,” marketing manager Jon Slaughter said. “We’re trying to initiate more people into the sport and show them an introduction to it.” Following is a look at some of the ways to save on the slopes. 1. Alpine Meadows — A $15 Alpine Club membership offers savings on life tickets, demo equipment, repairs, lessons, parking, food and beverages. Members can access lift tickets for as little as $44 on selected days. Learn-to-ski-or-ride package, Dec. 12-13 — $25 including group lesson, beginner lift ticket and rental equipment. A $155 stay and ski package includes guestroom at Resort at Squaw Creek, complimentary breakfast, life tickets and shuttle transportation. Season pass for college students is $299 — good at Alpine Meadows and Homewood. Pass is available for purchase through Dec. 1. Students must be carrying nine credit hours to qualify. 2. Homewood Mountain Resort — Nine ways to save promotion — among them, $39 lift tickets on selected days, active military ski and ride free, ski and ride free on your birthday (starting Jan 4). Learn to ski or ride - $25 on Dec. 12-13. 3. Boreal Mountain Resort — iRide members — ski any two days and third day is free, Frickin’ Fridays — college students, military and state employees get $15 lift tickets with valid ID (holiday blackout dates); and 1-2-3 Ride Free — take three beginner lessons and on fourth visit, get a free season pass for the rest of the year. Learn to ski or ride – $25 on Dec. 12-13. 4. Squaw Valley USA — Frequent skier program — $5 fee to join, then hit the slopes any four days and get fifth day free. Members can purchase $69 lift tickets Tuesdays through Thursdays that count toward the fifth free ticket; kids 12 and under ski for $10 every day; Women of Winter Wednesday is $49 booked in advance and $59 with reservations. Learn to ski or ride Dec. 12-13 — $25. Early season ski-n-stay packages starting at $102 per person per night. 5. Northstar at Tahoe — Learn to ski for $25 — includes group lesson, beginner lift ticket and rental equipment, midweek Nov. 30 – Dec 18 for ages 13 and above; stay-and-ski packages from $108 per person; double whammy season pass good at Northstar and Sierra at Tahoe starting at $399. Kids ticket this season will be valid for two consecutive days, so it is a two-for-one. 6. Sierra at Tahoe — Season pass is $199 for use Sunday-Friday with holiday blackout dates (good only for Sierra at Tahoe resort); learn to ski and snowboard special is $35 valid Sunday-Friday (non-holiday) for ages 13 and over — includes a two-and-a-half-hour lesson, rental equipment and lift ticket for beginners terrain. 7. Sugar Bowl — General admission program for free lessons and rentals with purchase of a lift ticket, ages 13 to 69 Book Sugar Bowl Lodge on line and save 50 percent Monday-Thursday all season Core daily pass - $19 to join and saves $10 on lift ticket purchase any day of the season 8. Diamond Peak — Learn to ski or ride — $25 on Dec. 12-13. Also learn-to-ski and ride weeks Jan. 11-15 and Mar 8-12 for $29. Discounts to military, fire, police personnel. Gloria Young can be reached at