Skiing and Snowboarding at Lake Tahoe: Deep Discounts for Beginners

by  Blane Bachelor | Dec 9, 2011
Skier in Aspen, CO
Skier in Aspen, CO / iStock

Heads up, skier and snowboarder wannabes who can make it to Lake Tahoe this weekend: Some top resorts are offering ridiculously deep discounts with their Learn to Ski and Board Weekend offers. This weekend only, a mere $30 will get you gear, a group lesson, and a lift ticket at seven Tahoe-area resorts, including the ones we've listed below.

Wherever you go, plan on arriving early, as some of the deals are on a first-come, first-served basis. An early arrival will also up your chances of getting the right sizes, and first-time fittings can take longer than usual, too. (And if you’re an old pro on the slopes, Mammoth Mountain has a great offering for you, too: a free lift ticket on Friday.)

Boreal Mountain: Convenient to San Francisco and the Bay Area, Boreal is a beginner- and budget-friendly resort and a good spot for skiers or boarders who want to brush up on their skills before tackling some of Tahoe’s more technical mountains. Its Learn More on the North Shore deal, which is first-come, first-served, is offered for anyone ages 8 and up and includes gear rental (except for helmets, which are $5 and required for under-18 participants; you can also bring your own), a 1¾-hour lesson, and a limited-access lift ticket. Lessons start at 10:15am, 12:15pm, and 2:30pm (additional times may be added), and resort staff recommend arriving at least an hour ahead of time.

In addition, Boreal has a great 1-2-3 Ski Free program: Buy three lessons in one season and get a free season pass. And if you’re a college student or active military, be sure to take advantage of the resort’s Frickin’ Friday deal: a $15 lift pass, with the presentation of a valid ID.

Alpine Meadows: The resort is opening for the season Saturday, with beginner lessons (ages 3 and up) offered at 10am and 1pm. The website encourages heading to the rental shop bright and early, by 8:30am, to have enough time to gear up before the morning lesson.

Northstar: Call ahead of time for a reservation for this great deal, which includes a two-hour skiing or snowboarding lesson for beginners ages 13 or older, as well as an all-day, limited access lift ticket. On Saturday, there’s more availability for skiing lessons, but, as of Thursday, Sunday has wide availability for both skiing and boarding.

Squaw Valley: For the popular resort's Learn to Ski and Ride Weekend, call ahead for reservations for beginners ages 3 to 13; morning and afternoon classes are offered at Squaw Kids. Adults should make arrangements at the Snowsports School or Squaw Valley Ski Rental to jump on the deal.

Be sure to check out our Lake Tahoe Travel Guide, then use our Travel Search price comparison tool to find the lowest rates on flights, hotels, cruises, and more travel deals.

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