I am usually trying to think of fun things for kids on weekends. Lake Tahoe was getting a lot of snow so we decided to go for a quick ski trip one weekend in February. I chose Sugar Bowl because I heard it was a good resort for families and beginner skiers, and it was! The people were chill and friendly, and the vibe was laid back and fun. There were no crowds and the sun was shining. It was a beautiful weekend.
Exploring the wilderness. She was fine but I kept sinking into a foot of snow.
One of the things she was most looking forward to was making a snow angel.
We built a fort. She said it will "protect me from the dragons."
I wanted her to try skiing, so a week before our trip I showed her videos of little kids in ski class and skiing. She enjoyed the videos and seemed willing to try. It would be her first ski lesson and I was a bit worried she would back out at the last minute.
She was hesitant when we first arrived at the Kids' Village and didn't want me to leave. After a few minutes, she let Instructor Brittany fit her ski boots and find her skis while I snuck away. Brittany first had them try skiing near the village. It was her first time skiing!
Then the girls carried their skis up the hill and they practiced some more at the bottom of the hill. Full disclosure: she carried her skis only halfway up the hill and then stopped walking and refused to budge. She claimed she was too tired to go on.
Suddenly they were getting on the ski lift! Did you know they do that in beginner lessons?!?!
They skied down the green run on their own. I was so impressed.
The next day we decided to put her in another lesson so I can take a lesson myself. Then she was skiing on her own.
For this trip we rented a house near Lake Donner, which was only fifteen minutes from Sugar Bowl. If we go back for a short weekend trip again, we might just stay at the resort so we don't have to drive and park to ski.
Things to know about Sugar Bowl:
- There are two villages with each its own entrance and ski lifts.
- The first entrance is the Judah entrance which allows you drive right up to Judah Lodge and park there for the day.
- The second entrance leads to a parking lot and you have to ride a gondola to get to the Village Lodge.
- It is a five minute walk from lodge to lodge if you are energized and wearing regular shoes; a twenty minute walk if you are tired, hungry, and wearing ski boots. You can also ski from one to another provided you know how to ski.
What I liked about Sugar Bowl was that it was not crowded. There were no lines. People were nice and helpful. The Judah side has nice wide open lanes that are perfect for beginners. They have a magic carpet for kids and a green run truly for beginners.
What I did not like was that there was no easy way to get from one lodge to another. Also the kid's ski school did not seem very organized. For the first ski lesson we were directed to go to the Village Kids and everything was fine. For the second ski lesson we went back to same place but were told that the lessons are always given on the Judah side. As you can image there was a lot of schlepping to get from Village to Judah and we were late for lessons.
Overall it was a great trip. Everyone had fun and we are looking forward to going again.
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629 Sugar Bowl Road
Norden, CA 95724