Regardless if you’re a glass half-full or a more realistic half-empty type person, this upcoming High Sierra Ski Season will be different. Despite skiing being a naturally physical distancing sport, you still need to take a lift and most likely go inside to warm up on chilly days. With that being said, each ski resort is making plans for the upcoming 2020/21 ski season. Here’s a sample of what to expect across the Sierra Nevada.
General Policies For COVID-19
At this moment, nearly every ski area in the Sierra is planning to open, but as we’ve seen this year, things can change quickly. Your best bet is to plan ahead, check before you go, and most of all, be patient. All ski resorts are requiring everyone to wear face coverings to access the mountain. This includes lift lines and riding on chairlifts and gondolas. How they will be handling capacity and other variables varies by resort.
North Lake Tahoe
There’s nothing that compares to a winter in North Lake Tahoe. A one-of-a-kind winter experience unified by 12 unique towns each with an adventurous spirit as deep as the lake itself. North Lake Tahoe is home to some of North America’s largest ski resorts, with budget-friendly options to mega-resorts. This area includes Northstar California, Squaw Valley | Alpine Meadows, Sugar Bowl, Diamond Peak, Mt. Rose – Ski Tahoe, Homewood Mountain Resort, Boreal Mountain California, Soda Springs, and Tahoe Donner Downhill Ski Resort.
To find out what to expect at each of these north Tahoe ski resorts, head over to the North Lake Tahoe post: Preparing for the 2020/21 ski season.
The south shore of Lake Tahoe features three major resorts within their region: Heavenly Mountain, Kirkwood, and Sierra-at-Tahoe.
For the latest on what to expect for the south shore ski resorts for the upcoming season, tips on how to plan, and more, check out the article: What to expect at Tahoe Ski Resorts for the 2020/21 winter season.
The mighty eastern Sierra within Mono County is home to the legendary Mammoth Mountain and June Mountain resorts.
If you’re planning a trip to the Eastern Sierra to ski either of these mountains, you can head directly to the Mammoth COVID-19 page or June Mountain COVID-19 page to find out what to expect at each resort.
On the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada within Tuolumne County is Dodge Ridge.
This winter will be its 70th year of being a family owned, family loved, and family built resort. They’re planning to open and their latest information guidelines for the upcoming ski season can be found on their snow safety page.
Yosemite is home to Badger Pass Ski Area, one of only three ski areas in the country within the confines of a National Park.
For snow enthusiasts that want to ski at the oldest ski area in California, you’ll have to wait until the 2021/22 ski season. As of this moment, they’re not planning on opening the downhill or Nordic centers this winter. For more information, head over to the national park website.
For an overall look at the travel guidelines across the entire region, be sure to visit our High Sierra COVID-19 Travel News & Resources Page. In summary, the best solution is to not wait and plan ahead. If you already have an idea of when you want to visit, book those days, reserve your tickets and get your lodging set. And another great idea is to have a backup plan if things don’t go exactly how you want with other snow play activities.
Author: Alex Silgalis
Alex founded Local Freshies® in 2014 to be the #1 website providing the “local scoop” on where to eat, drink & play in mountain towns throughout North America. When he’s not writing and executing marketing strategies for small businesses & agencies, he’s in search of the deepest snow in the winter and tackiest dirt in the summer.