Guide to Lake Tahoe Ski Resorts - Tahoe Sands Resort

Guide to Lake Tahoe Ski Resorts

Skiing is undoubtedly Tahoe’s main attraction in the winter time. With over 300 inches already reported, this season is shaping up to be one for the books. If you, like many, are visiting Tahoe this winter and wondering which Ski Resort is the best to visit, let this blog be your guide! Below we’ve listed our favorite ski resorts in Tahoe and given recommendations on who they would be best for. Give it a read and we’ll see you on the slopes!

Palisades Tahoe:

With the recent addition of the new Base to Base Gondola, the once separate Alpine and Palisades sides of the resort are now connected, making this one of the largest continuous ski resorts in North America. Palisades Tahoe is known for its world class terrain and is heralded as one of the best ski resorts in the world for expert skiers. Though many of the resort’s acres are steep, there’s still plenty of terrain for beginners. With a lively atmosphere in the Palisades Village, this is the perfect resort for large groups or strong skiers and riders looking to push themselves on challenging but rewarding terrain. The best part? Both Red Wolf Lodge at Olympic Valley and Olympic Village Inn are both just steps away from the base area on the Palisades side!

palisades tahoe

Northstar California:

This is the quintessential family resort for those seeking long mellow groomed trails, a world class ski school, great après scene, and acres of beautiful wooded terrain that can make you feel like you’ve left the ski resort altogether. Northstar prides itself on its laid back yet still luxurious vibe, complete with all the amenities that you’d expect from a resort in this category. It has numerous activities for kids or those who are not skiing, and would be the perfect resort for families looking for the complete ski resort experience.

Sugar Bowl:

Looking to escape the crowds? It might be time to give Sugar Bowl a try. Located on Donner Summit, Sugar Bowl is mostly known for its uncrowded and laid back feel that has the same eye-popping terrain as some of the country’s most famous resorts. Sugar Bowl sells a limited number of tickets and passes so their lifts never feel crowded. The resort’s elevation also means that it gets some of the deepest snow totals in Tahoe. With some world class expert terrain and a family friendly atmosphere, Sugar Bowl is a great choice for groups or families of strong to intermediate skiers looking to avoid the crowds of the bigger resorts.


Heavenly is the largest and most well known resort on the south side of Lake Tahoe. With a Gondola that rises right out of the main city street, you can be whisked high up into the mountains to arguably some of the best skiing with views of Lake Tahoe. While Heavenly doesn’t have a large amount of advanced terrain, it has acres of accessible and fun skiing that most find hard to explore completely in just one day. In fact, Heavenly actually sits right on the California/Nevada border, with half of its trails looking out over Nevada and the other half facing the California side of Tahoe. South Lake Tahoe is known for its lively nightlife, restaurants, and large hotels and casinos. Given that Heavenly is right next to all the fun, this would be the perfect resort for those who value the après as much as the skiing.



For the expert skiers and riders who don’t mind a drive to access the goods, Kirkwood should be high on your list when you visit. Known for its acres of expert ridgeline skiing, this mountain is an advanced and expert skiers paradise. It’s about a 45 min drive from South Lake Tahoe, and 1.5 – 2 hour drive from North Lake Tahoe, which means that the resort is rarely ever crowded. For those who like to explore, Kirkwood is the perfect resort. Though the Village has limited après options, there are some restaurants and bars available. Kirkwood would be a great mountain for the advanced skier and rider who’s looking for a bit of an adventure and who doesn’t mind a day trip.

Mt. Rose:

Known as one of North Tahoe’s best kept secrets, Mt. Rose has all of the small mountain feel with some seriously big mountain terrain. This no-frills resort has one thing to offer its visitors, great skiing! Located on top of the Carson Pass, Mt. Rose has the highest base area of any Tahoe Resort. With incredible snow quality and breathtaking views of the Great Basin of Nevada, this resort is perfect for those who want to try something new all while avoiding the crowds.

mt rose

Diamond Peak:

Located in Incline Village, just a short drive from both Tahoe Sands Resort and Red Wolf Lakeside Lodge, Diamond Peak is a small, family-friendly resort that is owned and operated by the town. With relatively cheap ticket prices, family-friendly terrain, and a great ski-school, Diamond Peak is a great mountain for beginners and intermediate skiers looking to avoid the crows at the big mountains. In fact, Diamond Peak likely has one of the best lunch spots of any of the Tahoe Resorts at the Snowflake Lodge!

Book Your Stay Today:

Tahoe is off to a record start to the 2023 winter season. With feet of snow in both December and January, the skiing has never been better! Winter stays are filling up fast so book your stay today!

*Hint: Mid-week is one of the best times to visit the ski resorts!