- Overall Rating 5
- Family Friendly 4
- All-Mtn. Terrain 5
- Terrain Park 4
- Nightlife 1
Pros: Extreme terrain, most snow, no crowds
Cons: Short runs, wet snow, windy
Recommended For: Singles, Empty Nesters
Date Visited: Feb 1, 2006
I lived in South Lake Tahoe and worked at Kirkwood for a year. Being somewhat lazy, I only got in 65 days but I was spoiled with endless powder days of epic proportions, as we had 44 feet of snow that year. The 'Wood is so good, I never skiied anywhere else the whole season.
Kirkwood has a lot of beginner and intermediate stuff but the best part is the advanced terrain. Chutes, cliffs, steeps, its all there for serious riders. It also gets the most snow of any resort in the Tahoe area although at times it can be wet. I found out why they call it "Sierra Cement". And it can get windy enough they shut down most of the lifts.
I will warn you, its possible to get stuck overnight at the resort when both passes close due to heavy snow. Its pretty rare but you will be sleeping in the cafeteria if it does. On the other hand you will have an excuse to miss work and get an epic pow day. And the resort pretty much shuts down at 6pm. The only bar that stays open later is the K-Wood Inn so if its nitelife you're after, you'll have to drive to South Lake Tahoe.
If you go to Tahoe, go to Kirkwood first, then try the others.