With things calming down a bit since the holidays have past, many OGE employees have found themselves taking some time off and getting away from home. Laura Geiger spend her time off in the beautiful region of Lake Tahoe.
Read on below for a trip reports from Laura’s most recent adventures.
Lake Tahoe 2013. By: Laura Geiger
One of the only complaints I have being an east coast skier is that it is always grey and cloudy at the mountain. We rarely get a bluebird day so when we do, we take the opportunity, even if the conditions are less than ideal. Fortunately, I had the opportunity to go out to sunny Lake Tahoe for a 10 day ski trip with family and friends.
We arrived in Reno to beautiful sunny skies and 50 degree weather. The drive to South Lake Tahoe was gorgeous, coming up from the desert into the mountains and the crystal clear blue lake. We got checked into our condo and proceeded to acclimate to the higher altitude.
On our first day of skiing we drove the 45 minutes down to Kirkwood Resort, just south of the lake. Kirkwood is one of the steepest, most dramatic resorts I have ever been to and is also probably one of my favorites. The trails are wide and open, but don’t let that fool you. They have some serious pitch to them. We skied all morning, enjoying the sunshine and ate lunch outside on the deck facing the slopes. In the afternoon, we headed to the back side of the mountain to check out more equally steep terrain.
Our next two ski days were incredible, the first one being at Sierra-at-Tahoe and then Heavenly. Sierra-at-Tahoe is a smaller resort, catering more to locals than tourists. It has some great trails, including some narrow tree runs that you typically don’t see out west.
Heavenly is the main resort area in South Lake Tahoe and by far the biggest. The tickets were incredibly expensive but we were able to find some discounted passes courtesy of our hotel and Liftopia. Heavenly is unique in that it sits on the state line between Nevada and California. The California side has great views of the lake and surrounding mountains while the Nevada side views consist mainly of flat desert-like terrain. The trails on the Nevada side are steeper and rockier, and in my opinion, the more challenging side of the mountain. It was another beautiful, sunny day and we were able to again eat outside on the deck, enjoying a nice, albeit, expensive beer.
We took the next few days off as we didn’t want to ski on the weekend with the crowds. We cruised around town and did some last minute shopping for friends. We dropped my parents off at the airport on Sunday morning and then drove to Truckee for a late breakfast and the Donner Historical Museum.
On Monday, we took it easy in the morning, then drove up to Donner Ski Ranch at the top of Donner Pass. It’s a tiny mountain (by western standards), with only 6 lifts, a real locals place. While the trails weren’t challenging, we enjoyed the nice weather and we basically had the whole place to ourselves.
Overall, we had a great trip and I love the Lake Tahoe area, especially the areas north of the lake. It was so sunny and warm everyday, it made it hard to come back to the grey northeast. I’d love to go back in the summer and do some hiking on the PCT and maybe a bit of kayaking on the lake.