P.O. Box 2007, Squaw Valley USA, CA | Directions 9614639.196531 -120.235880
Spread out over six impressive peaks, this former Winter Olympics site is one of the world's top ski areas.
With a reputation built on gonzo runs and a profusion of Olympic-caliber skiers, this is the most insistently European-style layout in Tahoe. Carved into vast, naked bowls above the tree line, a plethora of runs challenge skiers with nerves (and legs) of steel: cornices, steep faces and endless mogul fields abound. An ascent in the tram over the sheer wall and jagged rocks of Broken Arrow (elevation 8,020 feet) is a thrill unto itself.
Hit the Mountain
On weekends, the crush to get to the top is daunting, with the longest wait at the cable car. It's typically faster to take the gondola, or the Squaw One Express, a quad chair. Better yet, make your warm-up runs off the Red Dog and Squaw Creek chairs, then work your way over to the upper mountain. For advanced and expert skiers, some of the resort's hidden treasures are off these chairs: Olympic Lady, Silverado and Granite Chief.
Vital Stats Vertical Drop: 2,850 ft.
Base Elevation: 6,200 ft.
Top Elevation: 9,050 ft.
Hours of Operation: Weekends, holidays 8:30am-4pm; weekdays 9am-4pm; night skiing daily 4pm-9pm mid-December to mid-April.
Skiable Acres: 4,000
Number of Runs: 16 bowls, 100+ runs
Beginner Terrain: 25 percent
Intermediate Terrain: 45 percent
Advanced Terrain: 30 percent
Night Skiing: Daily 4pm-9pm, mid-December to mid-April
Snowboarding: Two half pipes, two terrain parks Distance from San Francisco: 200 miles
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