Ski Resorts on Nevada Side of Lake Tahoe
Lake Tahoe resort views.
Lake Tahoe resorts are known for their plentiful snowfall.
Lake Tahoe resorts are known for their plentiful snowfall.
Little ones learn to ski at Lake Tahoe's Nevada resorts.
Little ones learn to ski at Lake Tahoe's Nevada resorts.

Lake Tahoe, on the Nevada California border is a winner of FTF’s Top 10 (Cheap) Getaways For Family Travelers 2008 award.

Ski vacations can be expensive and difficult to plan if you don’t know where to look and ways to save.  A snowsports vacation is not usually considered budget-friendly because of all the components:  lift tickets, equipment rental, lessons and accommodations — not to mention airfares, rental car and hot chocolate.  Determined to scope out which popular mountains give families the best value for their dollar, FTF did extensive research to find the 2008 pick for FTF’s Top (Cheap) Ski Getaway and found two: Lake Tahoe in the West and the Western White Mountains in the East.  Here’s a look at what Lake Tahoe offers for a cheap family vacation a la ski.

Lake Tahoe, Nevada & California

As one of the premier snowsports regions in North America for its powder and blue skies, Lake Tahoe has seven main resorts situated on its North Shore; Alpine MeadowsHomewoodDiamond PeakMount RoseNorthstarSquaw Valley and Sugar Bowl. Believe it or not, skiing these resorts, renting equipment and staying nearby can be affordable; you just have to do your research (don’t worry, we did it for you).

Your family can have the vacation of a lifetime by skiing all seven resorts. Lake Tahoe offers an Interchangeable Lift Ticket that’s accepted at all seven resorts every single day of the season for just $62 a day. Multi-day tickets are available for three to seven days of skiing. Generally, tickets get more expensive around the holiday season, so if you plan to ski at this time, this is a sure way to save money.

Another tip to keep in mind is that you probably don’t have to rent a car. Every resort offers a shuttle service; most are free and cover a large part of the North Shore. There’s also a cheap trolley system that travels throughout the whole area. Mountainside lodges are convenient but expensive; instead try budget lodging options close by. There are chain motels like Best Western, as well as smaller ski lodges. Rental cabins and condos, most with kitchens (a big money saver), are widely available, even if you only plan to stay for a weekend, and are great options for larger groups.  Rustic Cottages in Tahoe Vista, for example, has four person cabins with kitchens for $140-$170 per night.

If your family already has a favorite resort at Lake Tahoe, or if you’re only looking to ski one this season, most lift tickets are still affordable. Diamond Peak, one of the more family-friendly resorts, has lower rates than the others. An adult can ski for a full day for $49 and 13 to 17-year-olds pay only $39. Kids 6 and under ski for free. The resort also offers a Family Price so that one adult and one child (7 to 12 years) can ski for $67, or one adult and one youth (13 to 17 years) for only $83. Additional adult and youth tickets are greatly reduced, too.

Homewood Mountain offers breath-taking views as you glide down their trails, many of which have hidden pathways leading to other trails. The resort offers a significantly lower lift ticket price as well; adults are $39 weekdays or $53 weekends, and teens are always just $35. Or, you can try out Alpine Meadows, which has a special terrain park just for kids and charges $64 per adult or $49 per teen. Both of these resorts are closest to Tahoe City, and a shuttle bus or trolley can take you to other areas of North Shore.

While all the resorts offer equipment rentals, it’s usually more expensive than renting from a non-affiliated shop.  Tahoe Dave’s Skis & Boards has five locations in the North Shore area and has ski rental packages for only $27 a day. Lake Tahoe Tourism has all you need need to find the perfect slopes and a cozy hideaway this winter — without breaking the bank.

5 Replies to “Top Cheap Ski Getaway: Lake Tahoe, Nevada”

  • Skiing and snowboarding is really expensive but there are ski vacation packages like this that is just right for our budget.

  • Jen

    $50 for Two-Way Trip, Food, and Lift Ticket to Alpine Meadows at Tahoe (Value $105)

    http://townhog.com/coupon/74

    Bay Area Ski Bus
    418 N. Buchanan Circle
    Pacheco, California 94553 Map
    | Website

    The Offer
    Hop on a carefree one-day ski trip to Alpine Meadows at Tahoe with Bay Area Ski Bus. The number-one ski tour operator operates fun and reliable bus trips for all types of groups.

    Gather your friends and hit the slopes in a fun, safe, comfortable, and very affordable way.

    Enjoy a ride to and from the slopes, a continental breakfast, a full-day lift ticket to Alpine Meadows, snacks, and even a movie on the drive home. With over 19 convenient pick-up locations throughout the Bay Area, there is no reason to miss the bus.

    About Bay Area Ski Bus:
    What could ruin a ski or snowboarding trip to Tahoe? How about driving for hours fighting traffic, struggling with tire chains, or falling asleep? Skip all of that hassle and jump onto the Bay Area Ski Bus. You get to relax and they take care of you, the driving, and everything else.

  • Lisa

    THE ONLY DISCOUNT SKI AND BOARD SHOP THREE MINUTES FROM HEAVELY IN LAKE TAHOE.

    SPORT SKI PACKAGE $16 A DAY,

    HEAD BOARD PACKAGE $17 A DAY,

    WINTER RENTAL CLOTHING FROM $5

    CROSS COUNTRY SKIIS $10 A DAY,

    SNOW SHOES $10 A DAY.

    WE ARE THREE MINUTES PASS THE CASINOS ON THE CORNER OF HWY 50 (LAKE TAHOE BLVD) AND ELKS POINT ROAD ON THE SOUTH SHORE OF LAKE TAHOE 775-588-0970

  • I agree that these ski trips are expensive, and although I enjoy going with the family I don't ski, and have no urge to learn at my age. I love going with the family however, but spend all my time at the spa and the lounge in front of the fire.

  • DONT GET RIPPED OFF, GET HOOKED UP!!

    THE ONLY DISCOUNT SKI AND BOARD SHOP THREE MINUTES FROM HEAVELY.

    SPORT SKI PACKAGE $16 A DAY,

    HEAD BOARD PACKAGE $17 A DAY,

    WINTER RENTAL CLOTHING FROM $5

    CROSS COUNTRY SKIIS $10 A DAY,

    SNOW SHOES $10 A DAY.

    WE ARE THREE MINUTES PASS THE CASINOS ON THE CORNER OF HWY 50 (LAKE TAHOE BLVD) AND ELKS POINT ROAD ON THE SOUTH SHORE OF LAKE TAHOE 775-588-0970


This story was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question, and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.