Where to Ski in Tahoe: Alpine Meadows

It's not just Squaw Valley's neighbor, Alpine Meadows is a destination of its own.
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It's not just Squaw Valley's neighbor, Alpine Meadows is a destination of its own.
Alpine Meadows, CA

You’ll go to Alpine to escape the bro-brah scene at Squaw, for the backcountry access, and to shred steep chutes in a low-key environment. You don’t mind hiking for your turns—the best powder at the resort often requires a 15-minute sidestepping traverse to access. And you don’t care much about après ski (there are two bars in the base lodge, but neither are exactly rowdy) or ski-in, ski-out lodging (there is no on-site accommodation and nothing even resembling a base village). The best places to ski? Take the Summit Six chair and follow the 15-minute traverse to High Beaver Bowl—when it’s open, this steep, 1,500-foot bowl has the mountain’s deepest stashes. Or avoid the lift line at Summit and ride Scott chair. Traverse skier’s right off the lift out to the Promised Land or Gentian Gully, where gladed trees hold snow long after a storm. [www.skialpine.com]


Alpine Meadows' Estelle Bowl

Anatomy: Alpine Meadows' Estelle Bowl

While technically inbounds, Estelle Bowl feels as close to backcountry as you can get at a ski resort. Ride the Summit Six chair, then take the ridgeline traverse to the north past two other bowls to reach Estelle, which offers sheltered north-facing trees, wide-open powder shots, and 45-degree spines.

Alpine Meadows New Year's Machine

Alpine Meadows Turns a Groomer into a Rolling Stage

Just in time for 2010, California's Alpine Meadows Ski Area is getting hammered with snow and is debuting a high-tech snow cat turned mobile entertainment system with a 210-square-foot stage. The machine will be unveiled at noon on December 31.