Tahoe-Truckee ski areas expect bigger snow dump Friday — extend discounts

It’s snowing hard at Truckee-Tahoe ski resorts, and much more is on the way later this week.

Ski areas also are extending their discounts. The deadline for the lowest price on an “Epic Pass” (which includes Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood) has been extended until Friday. The deadline for the lowest price on the “Tahoe Super Pass” (for Squaw, Alpine and Sierra-at-Tahoe) has been extended until December 16.

The snow and cold weather — ideal for snowmaking — will allow the ski resorts to open more lifts, or open all together.

Boreal, Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood, Squaw and Mt. Rose already are open.

Sugar Bowl could open as early as this weekend. Alpine Meadows and Homewood plan to open on December 13.

“Cold winter storm to bring mountain and foothills snow Friday into Saturday,” the National Weather Service reported Tuesday afternoon. “Snow accumulations in the mountains of 6 to 12 inches.”

Freezing weather during the week also will be ideal for snowmaking.

On Tuesday, many ski areas reported it was “dumping.” Accumulations totaled more than five inches.

“The snow began overnight, the plows are out, and snowmaking will kick into high gear with these low temps,” Homewood reported. “So far we’re seeing about an inch at the base of the mountain and estimating about 3 inches at the top. The snow is expected to continue through the day, with another system on the way for later this week.”

Ski areas have invested many millions of dollars to upgrade their resorts for the 2013-14 season. Some highlights of the upcoming season include a new “Crow’s Peak” chairlift at Sugar Bowl and new food trucks at Squaw with “regionally grown, sustainably sourced food.”

Homewood Mountain Resort, on the scenic West Shore of Lake Tahoe, is looking forward to its 52nd year of family-oriented skiing and snowboarding fun. New season pass offerings, lodging packages, après-ski specials and more enhance what is already one of the most comfortable ski experiences in Northern California.

The Sierra Foothills also could get some snow on Friday, providing for a “Winter Wonderland.” Grass Valley is hosting Cornish Christmas and Nevada City is offering horse-drawn carriage rides.

A Snowy Start to December from Northstar California Videos on Vimeo.

(photo credit: Northstar by Corey Rich; food trucks at Squaw; video at Sugar Bowl)

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