Mt. Rose Chutes grand opening set

Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe's official grand opening for The Chutes is Saturday. The Chutes opened last month for experienced skiers happy on black or double black diamond runs.

It's an unusual setup; you first get over to the Slide Moutain bowl, hit a Chute, cross over to the lift that ends at the street to Slide entrance and ride back up to the base area of the Slide Mountain side. It took a long time to convince the U.S. Forest Service that the Chutes area offered great skiing. Congratulations to Mike Pierce and Co. More next week after trying the Chutes.

Meanwhile, it seems that Kirkwood has sneaked in a couple of new surface lifts in the back Bowl area. And maybe even a new-old chairlift. Just a report from a boarder friend but will check it out. Now if the roads just stay open ...

• First-time skiers and snowboarders can hit the slopes at Diamond Peak's Learn to Ski and Ride Weekend Jan. 22-23, when a lift, lesson and rental package will be available for $20.

• Skiers and snowboarders can select from seven downhill and five cross country resorts while saving money with the North Lake Tahoe Resort Association's Ski Tahoe North interchangeable lift ticket. Two-day interchangeable tickets cost $55 per day and three-or-more-day tickets cost $52 per day. The tickets are valid all season long with no black out dates.

Participating resorts include Alpine Meadows, Diamond Peak, Homewood, Mt. Rose, Northstar, Squaw and Sugar Bowl. The pass is also valid at cross-country ski resorts Northstar, Royal Gorge, Resort at Squaw Creek Cross Country, Tahoe Donner and Tahoe City Cross Country.

• Deals offered by Northstar-at-Tahoe and Sierra-at-Tahoe through partner ski/board shops and discounts for other resort pass holders and employees can cut snowsporting costs. Visit select ski or board shops in Northern California and Northern Nevada to pick up a free voucher and bring it to either resort for a $40 lift ticket. Vouchers are valid Jan. 7-14 and March 21 through the end of the 2005 season. For a list of participating value season partner shops, visit

Those skiers and riders with a season pass to another resort are invited to experience Northstar and Sierra at a discount this season. For only $30, other resort passholders can purchase a full-day lift ticket Monday-Friday, non-holiday, or for $10, they can purchase an all-day Nordic trail pass. Guests must present their 2004/05 ski resort pass and a photo ID to receive the discount.

Northstar and Sierra offer discounted lift tickets to other resort employees every Sunday. For $30, ski resort employees can purchase an all-day lift ticket at Sierra or Northstar. Resort employees simply show an employee ID badge and recent pay stub to receive the discounted ticket.

Sunday Northstar-at-Tahoe will host Kids Cross, a complimentary event that allows children to showcase their abilities while racing against kids their own age down Northstar's fast-paced Boardercross track.

Registration for the race will be held from 9 to 10:30 a.m. at the top of the Gondola. The race begins at 11 a.m. on Bear Paw, at mid-mountain, east of the Gondola. An awards ceremony will take place at 2 p.m., where the Northstar staff will give away loads of prizes to the top three skiers and boarders in four age divisions.

Skiers and snowboarders are both welcome to enter as the race format is split into skiercross and boardercross divisions. All kids under age 15 are invited to enter this fun competition. The race is free with the purchase of a lift ticket or a season pass. Parents must sign a waiver for each participant entering the competition.

Call (800) GO-NORTH.

• Kirkwood has received more than 120 inches of snow during the latest storm with 6 inches in the last 24 hours, 12 inches in the last 48 hours and 312 inches to date this season. With a base depth of 168 inches and 100 percent of the mountain open for skiing and riding conditions are some of the best this season.

Several on-mountain clinics at Kirkwood teach upper intermediate and advanced skiers and riders techniques to overcome the most challenging terrain on the mountain. All mountain telemark clinics focus on teaching freeheelers how to tackle any type of snow condition, steep groomed trails, off-piste and expert-only terrain. Clinics will be offered on Saturday and February 19. Cost of clinic is $95, or $120 with an all-day lift ticket.

Free Ride One Day Camps are designed for upper intermediate to expert skiers and riders who want to push their comfort levels so they can tackle any mountain, terrain or condition. Camps will be held Jan. 29, Feb. 12 and March 5 for skiers and on Jan. 15, Feb. 12 and March 13 for snowboarders. Cost is $95, or $120 with an all-day lift ticket.

Kirkwood offers Pipe and Park Sessions for skiers and riders who want to safely learn tricks and jib techniques both in the halfpipe and in the terrain park. Park and Pipe sessions are offered on weekends and holidays, weather permitting, for $25. Lift tickets are not included.

• Squaw Valley's Riviera Terrain Park already has a booming sound system, but this season the resort has announced the new "180 Sundays in the Park," a one-of-a-kind on-snow concert series featuring live bands performing on a special stage at the base of the terrain park and halfpipe. First concert of the series is scheduled for Sunday, Jan. 30 with a live performance by the LA-based rock band The Hangmen.

The Riviera halfpipe and the terrain park will both be open during the concert for an informal pipe and park jam, offering skiers and snowboarders a chance to show off their favorite tricks to concert goers while the music roars.

Additional concerts are scheduled for Feb. 27, March 20 and April 17 (weather permitting). The concerts are from noon to 3 p.m. each day. Skiers and snowboarders will need a lift ticket and walkers will need a Funitel ticket to access the park and concert area. Call (530) 583-6985.

• Ski Safety Awareness Week is Jan.1-21 and local resorts will be keying activities to safety awareness. Almost all will offer safety incentives, such as at Boreal, where free helment rentals will go with adult and children's classes. Ski Patrol will hand out Skier Responsibility Code cards, good for a free hot chocolate.

• Homewood repeats last year's $25 adult lift tickets Monday through Thursday. And kids 10 and under ski free every day.

• Alpine Meadows is staging the Snowbomb Big Air Sick and Twisted competition Saturday. And Wednesday it's hosting a women's ski and snowboard camp. Lift tickets are $39 for adults all the time.

• Sugar Bowl hosts the X-Jam Skier Cross and Boarder Cross on Jan. 14-16, Martin Luther King weekend. Registration is still open.Top finishers will receive invitations to the X-Games in Aspen.

Friday is KFOG Ditch Day at Sugar Bowl. Join Renee and be a FogHead for the day. KFOG tunes will spin at the Bowl all afternoon. Stick around for an Apres Ski party with more tunes, Korbel Champagne and KFOG drink specials.

January officially kicks off the Sugar Bowl McKids ski program. This year lift tickets for children 6-12 are $10 off with a McDonald's receipt. Just bring any McDonalds receipt to the ticket window for a $5 kids lift ticket. We'll also donate $2 for each ticket to the Ronald McDonald House Charities[.»

Sam Bauman is a Nevada Appeal Staff Writer. Contact him at or 881-1236.


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