Cruising into South Lake Tahoe the sun’s rays brightly glinted off the casinos making it feel like the Emerald City of Oz. In the distance snow could be seen covering only the highest peaks. It felt more like a summer’s day than a spring day.
Making the final turn into the nearly empty parking lot there’s a spot right in front. A rarity in mid-season unless you arrive incredibly early. With the boots strapped and t-shirt on, it’s time to head up. Walking through Heavenly’s village, the diehards can be seen in the sea of people wearing winter gear while the rest of the crowd wore flip flops, t-shirts, and shorts. Just like the Local Freshies crew, the rest of the snow lovers were trying to squeeze out their last runs as well. It was fitting that some of the best snow was left for those who were riding until the end.
Free Samples?!?!? Awesome!
Near the entrance of the gondola the crew from Heavenly Donuts could be heard yelling “Free samples !” What better way to celebrate the end, than fresh/ free donuts?! Treat in hand, the lift operators loaded our gear onto the gondola. Hopping into the cabin, the gondola whisked up the mountain.
At the summit station the weather was perfect to finish off the season strong. Cold nights and warm days had transformed the snow into the corn that Tahoe is famous for. Regardless of the fact that there was only a few runs open, everyone’s attitude was that of a celebration. A couple clicks of the bindings, a few high-fives and it was time to finish off the season right…Tahoe-Style.
Dropping into Orion the snow was like a blank canvas
Not a soul around! Laying out a huge heel side turn and then explode into a toe side slash, and repeat. The board begins to flow. Turn after turn, the stoke increases and it feels like surfing the mountain. In true Tahoe fashion, Kats were wearing costumes. There was a fisherman, a princess and a retro skier and they were all ripping it up on the final day. Nonexistent lift lines and empty runs meant multiple laps! This is no big deal to seasoned legs. On the last few runs, at the end of the window, the snow turned from perfect corn to mashed potatoes.
This means it’s time to call it for the season.
On the final run there’s time for one last look at Lake Tahoe atop the California Trail. The brain recollects the hard-fought days on the mountain this season. There might have been only a few powder days, but there were many great days filled with fun and camaraderie.
Minimal crowds, even on the busiest days, allowed for as many runs as you wanted without having to wait. On snow days, the conditions lasted longer than any season before. Like any good spring session it was time to go celebrate! First stop, Cold Water Brewery for a few cold ones.
This might’ve been the last day on the South Shore, but word is Squaw extended their season!
And if you want to see how much fun you missed check out our video below: