Skiing in July!

The 4th of July weekend was filled with all of the traditional holiday summer activities! Picnics, barbeques, beach outings, boating, cycling – AND SKIING!!!!

You see, what happened was…….

Mother Nature provided Lake Tahoe with so much snow this past winter – right through Memorial Day – that resorts were able to open for the July 4th weekend. This event has only happened 4 times in the last 40 years! Alpine Meadows, Squaw Valley and Sugar Bowl all opened this holiday weekend to provide skiers and riders with a spring skiing foundation – IN JULY!

I have a dear friend who is a seasoned boarder at Squaw and when she suggested a trip from Manhattan – of course I took advantage and added Squaw Valley and Sugar Bowl to my list of new ski areas!  “Ski sixty for sixty” has two more mountains on the list!  (It was tempting to revisit Alpine Meadows – but there were so many activities to indulge in – I passed up that opportunity.)

Squaw Valley was an awesome experience!  My friend guided us along beginner, intermediate and expert steeps – we skied everything open for the taking.  Squaw had lost its top to bottom skiing by this weekend but still had over 100 inches of base at elevations above 7,000 feet.  (Squaw’s base elevation – 6,223 feet above sea level)

First tracks were a must (have you met me?) so we got 2 hours of skiing and riding in before the snow got a little sticky and the crowds got a little deep.  The need for a summer sport called us!  I’ll never forget seeing the Lift Operators standing on the snow in flip flops, shorts and Squaw golf shirts – an incredibly unique experience for a northeast skier!

The next day Squaw hosted the Cushing Classic (slush cup) where costumed skiers and boarders slid down attempting a pond – surf crossing for points and glory.  With temperatures in the upper 80’s and crowds as big as on a powder day I’m told, we had a lot of fun watching great pond crossing failures and successes.  It’s a shame that man in the thong didn’t even make it to the pond….the thong didn’t quite provide sufficient coverage to protect his fall and the resulting butt-burn!

Squaw Village was amazing and I love the commemorative T-shirt for skiing Squaw in July!

But then I got to ski Sugar Bowl on July 4th!!!!

Sugar Bowl Resort is located atop Tahoe’s majestic Donner Summit.  Its base is at 6,883 feet above sea level and rises to an elevation of 8,383 feet.  We started early and got about 2 hours of great skiing on fun terrain!  We experienced top to bottom skiing on intermediate and advanced trails on Disney Mountain.  Sugar Bowl is known for its chutes on Mt. Lincoln which was not open that day but clearly had enough base for anyone willing to make the climb.  It boasts some great steeps and warrants a return trip for me!

We had special passes to ski with all the Season Pass-holders that day (friends of friends are awesome!) so I felt extra special skiing on July 4th!  Unlike Squaw, there is no “village” but I was so grateful for the opportunity to ski with staff from Sugar Bowl and experience their mountain with them.  Season Pass-holders are known by first name….so if you are looking to be part of a ski community, Sugar Bowl is your kind of place.  I just live too far away so I’ll have to be content with the experience – and my cool T-Shirt!

My photo gallery has awesome pictures from Squaw and Sugar Bowl – you’ll see how skiing in July in the Northern Hemisphere was such a wonderful experience!  If you have had a similar experience in the past I’d love to hear from you!  Meanwhile, I can’t WAIT for my next adventure!!

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