If you’re not a frequent skier or snowboarder, planning a ski trip can seem intimidating. It really shouldn’t be! While it takes some practice, most people get the hang of things in no no time! If you’re planning a ski trip to Lake Tahoe, and you’re feeling a little nervous, don’t be. We’ve got your back. We’ve compiled some of the common rookie mistakes we see first-time skiers make and some handy tips to help you hit the Tahoe slopes like a pro.
1. Not planning ahead
Advanced planning is key to a successful Lake Tahoe ski trip, especially right now while many Tahoe ski resorts and businesses are still operating under restrictions and capacity limitations. Planning ahead applies to everything from your lift tickets to your lodging reservations to ordering takeout. If you don’t book in advance, you may miss out or end up waiting a long time, which is no fun and can put a damper on your trip.
Your best option is to keep an eye on the ski resort’s website, double-check times and confirmation numbers (setting up alerts on your phone is a great idea), and contact businesses ahead of time via phone or email to confirm your reservations.
2. Not dressing appropriately
Temperatures and weather can fluctuate here in Lake Tahoe. That’s just part of living in a mountainous area. However, that can make figuring out what to pack for your ski trip a little tricky. It’s easy to get too hot and too cold, especially when you’re being physically active, so it’s important to find that balance.
One of our top tips is to wear a lot of layers. That way, you can ditch some clothes if you get too warm, but you’ve also got plenty to keep you warm when the temps are cooler in the morning and at night.
Moisture-wicking fabrics are also a great investment. It’ll help absorb sweat from being physically active and will help your clothes dry faster when they get wet from the snow. There’s a lot of great athletic wear out there that can help keep you dry and comfortable while you’re enjoying the ski slopes throughout the day.
3. Not taking skiing lessons
Many of the ski resorts in the area, including Heavenly Mountain Resort, offer lessons for all skill levels and we highly recommend you sign up.
Everyone can benefit from a ski lesson in Tahoe! For newbies, your ski lesson will probably focus on safety and learning the fundamentals that will help you make the most of your Tahoe ski trip. For more experienced skiers, the pros can help you master new skills and learn more about the more challenging trails.
There are various types of lessons and training available, including group events and one-on-one lessons depending on your budget, skill set, and personal preference.
4. Not testing gear before you buy it
There’s no doubt that ski gear can add up quickly. Between skis, boots, helmets, goggles, jackets, and other essentials, there’s a lot to buy. The most important thing when investing ski and snowboard gear is that you get the proper fit.
Take the time to try things on and test them out before you buy to make sure you’ll be comfortable when wearing them for an extended period. Also, read reviews and recommendations from other customers before buying to get insights into how long the gear will last and how it fits.
There are a lot of places to rent skis in Lake Tahoe. This can be a cost-effective option for those that aren’t avid skiers and snowboarders, or for those who have kids that will outgrow their gear quickly. The staff can help you find the best fit and get you exactly the right gear you’ll need. It’s a great way to try different brands and sizes before you buy.
5. Not wearing sunscreen
When it’s snowing or the temperatures are lower, it can be easy to forget about sunscreen or think it’s unnecessary. That’s definitely a rookie mistake. The sun still shines brightly on many days throughout the winter season and the rays reflect off the gorgeous Tahoe snow. That means you’re still at risk for sunburn and other skin damage.
You should always wear SPF — and reapply frequently — when spending an extended period of time outdoors to protect your skin against harmful UV rays and wind.
Start Planning Your Lake Tahoe Ski Trip
We can’t wait for you to experience all that Lake Tahoe has to offer during the winter season. As you plan your Tahoe ski trip, be sure to check out these other helpful resources:
- A Quick Guide to Skiing & Snowboarding In Lake Tahoe
- What To Expect At Lake Tahoe Ski Resorts In the 2020/2021 Season
- How to Plan A Lake Tahoe Ski or Snowboarding Trip on a Budget
- Expert Tips for Planning Your First Lake Tahoe Ski or Snowboard Trip
If you’re looking for a great hotel in Lake Tahoe, we’d love to have you. We’re literally only a few steps away from Heavenly Mountain Resort, which is one of the best places to ski in Tahoe. After an exciting day on the slopes, you can kick back and relax in one of our spacious suite-style rooms. We also have plenty of other great amenities for skiers and snowboarders, including ski snowboard valet.