The Ultimate Truckee Tahoe Winter Bucket List


The mountains are made for more than just skiing in the winter. In Truckee and Lake Tahoe, there is so much to do and so many places to explore - even in the snow! Here are our eight must-do activities this winter.

Explore the backcountry confidently with the help of Pacific Crest Snowcats. Book a private tour for the family or go out with a group. The tours operate on 3,000 acres of terrain between Squaw Valley and Sugar Bowl resorts. Included in the price of the adventure are an avalanche beacon, backcountry protocol education, professional guide service, lunch, and refreshments throughout the day. They advise making reservations at least two weeks in advance (it will also save you some money). 

Fat Bike Northstar’s Cross Country Trails. One guest from 2016/17 season said: “This center is a hidden gem and was such a cool way to experience the mountain from a totally different lens with killer views." Fat Tire bikes can charge through the snowy path in an exciting and new way. The Cross Country Center, which is located at mid-mountain, offers rentals, professional help, and tours. Already have a fat bike? Bring it up and start enjoying the trails! More information can be found on Northstar’s Website.


Visit the Sierra Hot Springs after a long day of shredding. Located 45 minutes from Northstar, this popular hot spring resort has four pools warmed to 85-110°F. The resort sits on 700 acres bordering National Forest Land, so there are opportunities for snowy hikes or cross-country skiing. A delicious café is on site with dinner options like Roasted Leg of Lamb. Be warned: this facility is clothing optional (children are still allowed). 

Confidently conquer moguls, powder, park, and steeps this winter with an advanced/expert lesson at Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows. Professional instructors will hone your existing skills and challenge you to conquer all types of terrain. You will navigate the best terrain suited for the conditions on your lesson day to get the most out of your ride. Another bonus – priority lift line access.

Have a blast at the annual Cushing Crossing at Squaw. This annual pond-skimming tradition is one of the best winter events! Held on April 14th, contestants can try their best to make it across the pond.  A celebrity judging panel will decide who’s shot was worthy of a prize – the event is a silly one, however, and judging is all in good fun. Not a fan of getting wet? The pond skim is fun from the sidelines as well! Have season passes at Northstar? The resort has a pond-skimming tradition as well, but they haven't released information about the 2018 event yet. Stay posted here.  

Take a plunge for charity at the 2018 South Lake Tahoe Polar Plunge. This fundraiser helps provide sports training and competition opportunities for the Special Olympic athletes. Participants will raise a minimum of $125 dollars to run into the chilly March waters of Tahoe. The 2018 theme is St. Patrick’s Day so show up in your best shamrock-inspired costume. There is an After Splash Bash at the MontBleu – with a hot lunch, bar, and festivities. A VIP tent and awesome prizes awarded to those that raise enough. If you don’t want to take the physical plunge, there are still many ways to donate and enjoy the party.