Coffee with a Cop event set for Oct. 5 at Cuppa Tahoe

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — The community is invited to have “Coffee With a Cop” next week as members of the California Highway Patrol South Lake Tahoe office, South Lake Tahoe Police Department, El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office come together in an informal, neutral space to discuss issues, have a cup of Joe, and build relationships.

The event will take place from 9-11 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 5, at Cuppa Tahoe in Tahoe Valley.

Coffee with a Cop provides a unique opportunity for community members to ask questions and learn more about law enforcement work in El Dorado County’s neighborhoods. 

The majority of contacts law enforcement has with the public happen during emergencies or emotional situations. Those situations are not always the most effective times for relationship building with the community, and some community members may feel officers are unapproachable on the street. Coffee with a Cop breaks down barriers and allows for a relaxed, one-on-one interaction.

“We hope community members will welcome the opportunity to ask questions, bring concerns forward, or simply get to know our officers,” said CHP Lt. Brian Cocagne. “These interactions are the foundation of community partnerships.”

Coffee with a Cop is a national initiative supported by the United States Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services. Similar events are being held across the country as local police departments strive to make lasting connections with the communities they serve. 

The program aims to advance the practice of community policing through improving relationships between police officers and community members one cup of coffee at a time. 

For more information, contact CHP Public Information Officer Ruth Loehr at 530-577-1001 or rloehr@chp.ca.gov.

District 5 candidates field voters’ questions at forum

The El Dorado County League of Women Voters hosted District 5 supervisor candidates Brooke Laine and Kenny Curtzwiler on Sept. 22 for a question and answer candidate forum at Pinewood Elementary School in Pollock Pines. 

Both were given a chance to address some of the district’s biggest issues if elected Nov. 8.

Laine is a longtime El Dorado County resident and former mayor of South Lake Tahoe. She spent 20 years running her family’s photography business and has experience in banking and business management.

Curtzwiler, another longtime county resident, is the owner of tree service contractor K & K Services and apparel company Lake Tahoe Ski Bum. He has run for supervisor before, twice losing to current District 5 Supervisor Sue Novasel. He is also a 20-year veteran, having joined the Nevada Army National Guard at age 31.

The following are the questions asked of the candidates and their responses:

Q: How do you balance the push for more housing while protecting the environment and addressing the limited water supply capacity?

Curtzwiler referenced a study done by the South Tahoe Utility District, which he said found the Tahoe Basin would not run out of water for 33 years. He said housing is nearly built out in Tahoe’s rural areas.

“Pollock Pines is very similar to the rural area of South Lake Tahoe and the Meyers area, because we are limited in the areas that we can build,” Curtzwiler said. “We will not be able to build any large developments other than two to three homes. Other than that, the housing issue is something that will need to be addressed as it comes up.”

Laine stated the county is about 4,000 units short of affordable housing demands, which she said needs to be addressed, adding the county needs to do a better job capturing rainfall and creating different water supply.

“I do think a study should be obtained to determine what that water shortfall might be and what kinds of things we can do perhaps to address those shortfalls,” Laine said.

Q: How well do you think the vacation rental ordinance is working in District 5?

Both candidates said enforcement of the ordinance is an issue.

Laine shared her opinion of redressing the ordinance completely. 

“The ordinance basically says right now if there is a noise after 10, you as a citizen are supposed to leave your home, go next door to the home in violation, find out who the local representative is, go back to your house, call your local representative and they are supposed to fix the problem within 30 minutes and self-report to the county within 24 hours,” Laine said. “That is not a good ordinance.”

Laine suggested taking the resident out of that equation and having law enforcement deal with the situation.

Curtzwiler shared his plan to implement a brick-and-mortar company, open 24 hours a day, that could address vacation home rental problems within 25 minutes.

He added that county’s Code Enforcement Unit is suffering from lack of funds.

“Enforcement is key,” he said. “We need to have the money from the (Transient Occupancy Tax) in South Lake Tahoe and Pollock Pines where the vacation home rentals are located to enforce the rules and we need a code enforcement officer there also.”

Q: Please provide your short- and long-term solutions for the homeless situation.

Curtzwiler responded that homeless people need to be near facilities and services to get them closer to assistance, stating Pollock Pines does have a homeless issue.

“The city of South Lake Tahoe does have somewhat of a homeless problem but they put (the homeless shelter) where the services are,” Curtzwiler explained. He made the case Pollock Pines is not the best place for a homeless shelter. “Where are the facilities to help these people? Are they located up in Pollock Pines? No, they are not. Is there a transportation system to get them from Pollock Pines down to the facilities in the Placerville area? No there is not.”

Laine touted the successes of South Lake Tahoe’s three navigation centers, previously hotels. 

“We had 120 homeless people who were counted in February and of those 120, we were able to house 100% of the veterans and we got another 80% of that 120 housed,” Laine said. 

While she recognized some may not want services or help, Laine commented that 400 homeless people on the West Slope have no services.

Laine said the county needs a permanent, long-term shelter on the West Slope. 

Q: How do you make sure the concerns of South Lake Tahoe and Pollock Pines are given fair representation?

Laine’s idea is to start an advisory council with representatives from each of the 11 communities that make up the district, a group that would meet up regularly, she said. 

“I think it’ll bring us together as a district in a way in which we have never done before,” Laine said.

Curtzwiler said showing up to community meetings and events is key and he plans to utilize an assistant working in the Pollock Pines area to make sure fair representation occurs. 

Q: The Board of Supervisors deals with many complex and contentious issues. Please give an example of a group you’ve worked with when various member views are in conflict and the role you play in reaching consensus with that group.

Curtzwiler said as an equal opportunity officer in the military he had to deal with thousands of soldiers experiencing the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy and his employees stay with his company for 18 years on average. 

“The reason they stay is because we take care of each other and I can’t do what I do without them,” he told the crowd. “The same thing works with the community of Pollock Pines and Meyers. I can’t do my job without you guys; you’re the ones that we need to depend on.” 

Laine shared her experience dealing with cell phone tower proposals while serving on the South Lake Tahoe City Council, which she called a “contentious” topic. 

“We felt very stuck in the middle as a council. I read lots of reports. I spoke with people and met with residents who had this equipment nearby their homes and we were upset about it,” Laine said. “We agreed as a council that we had a right to govern our community and to put some rules down so that cell phone companies couldn’t come in and put their equipment anywhere they want.”

Laine said the issue was eventually solved amicably.

Q: Top three priorities?

Curtzwiler said his top three priorities are the vacation rental issues in South Lake Tahoe, GPS and app navigation systems sending traffic into Tahoe neighborhoods and obtaining funds to solve those issues. 

Laine stated her top issues in the county included housing, transportation and fire preparedness.

Q: Should the county chamber of commerce get a county building for $3 a year rent?

“It sounds affordable but do they belong in a county facility?” Laine questioned. “I can definitely see some conflicts there. I haven’t thought about it much but it sounds like it could be a problem.”

“Absolutely not,” Curtzwiler said. “They should have their own building, paid for by chamber members.” 

Q: What are you going to do about the (Placerville) courthouse?

Both candidates said they have not followed this topic closely.

Curtzwiler said he needs more information on this topic before he can make decisions.

“That would be something that I would have to come down, study and listen to the other supervisors and talk to other people in the district about, because I am not too familiar with what is going to happen with the courthouse down in Placerville,” Curtzwiler said.

Laine also said she has no “skin in the game” on this topic, but recognized the courts have been cutting back on personnel.

“We’re concerned when they start dividing services in that kind of fashion where our people in Tahoe who have to travel through the snow and be separated from families in order to have a case heard,” Laine said. 

Q: What makes you stand out as a candidate?

Laine told the audience her experience in the public arena for 10 years makes her qualified as a supervisor candidate. 

“This is a budget of $318 million general fund dollars and there’s a lot of pressure on how a budget gets divided up, so the more experience you have in that regard, hitting the ground running, the better you’re going to be,” Laine said. 

Curtzwiler said his experience in business dealings in the county, longevity as a resident, military experience and the fact he is not affiliated with any county groups will make him effective at solving issues and dealing with the public.

“I have the experience to be out there, to interact with everybody and will never turn anybody down without listening to all sides,” Curtzwiler said. 

Q: Our schools and youth are very important to us and our families. How can you assist the community with safe and healthy activities? 

Curtzwiler said because the supervisor’s position is out of the scope of responsibility with school system dealings, it is crucial to be involved with the school board’s decision-making. 

Laine answered that she will work with organizations and school districts to come up with ideas the public wants to see through. 

Q: How will you work effectively with law enforcement and firefighters?

Laine said she will meet with all fire chiefs regularly discuss all issues and commented that having a good relationship with the Sheriff’s Office is important as problems develop.

Curtzwiler said he has experience working with firefighters in his tree service business and has met with the sheriff-elect, adding they are “on the same sheet of music as far as working together.” 

“They do not work for us and it is made clear that we need to work with them and not against them,” Curtzwiler said.

Q: Since supervisors cannot vote for land use in Tahoe, why should the supervisors from District 5 vote on land use in other districts?

Curtzwiler stated a supervisor casts votes for the entire county. As supervisor, Curtzwiler said he would be present at meetings throughout other districts to hear the voices of residents and county groups.

“It’s important for us to get out of our shell and drill down into other districts to learn what is going on,” Curtzwiler said.

Laine answered similarly, stating the structure of the Board of Supervisors calls for making decisions outside of their respective districts.

“It would be incumbent on me to make sure I understand what the needs are in other districts as it will be incumbent on the other supervisors to understand our needs in District 5,” Laine said. 

The full candidate forum can be viewed on YouTube at bit.ly/D5forum.

Winter stoke: Magic Hour to premier at Truckee-Tahoe

TRUCKEE, Calif. — Teton Gravity Research has unveiled the trailer for its newest film, Magic Hourand the film will be premiering locally for VIP screenings. 

On Friday, Sept. 30, a full length screening of the ski and snowboard film will premiere at the Truckee Community Arts Center with a high end whiskey tasting featuring Tincup Whiskey and an athlete/production team Q&A. 

“Magic Hour isn’t a particular time of day so much as it is these magical moments that we all experience on any given day, playing in some of the wildest places on the planet,” said co-editor of the film and co-founder of TGR Todd Jones. “We captured some of the most amazing skiing and snowboarding action in some of the most beautiful place in the world and we can’t wait to share the magic with the world.” 

Filmed on location in 2022 in the most epic places across North America, Magic Hour takes viewers from Jackson Hole, the Church, and Coast Mountain ranges in Alaska, to the Selkirk, Purcell, Valhalla, and Kootenay ranges in British Columbia, and Montana. 

Magic Hour’s star-studded cast will include some of the biggest names in the industry such as Lake Tahoe local Michelle Parker, Kai Jones, Nick McNutt, Jeremy Jones, Tim Durtschi, Parkin Costain, Amy Jane David, Bode Merrill, plus a few more friends. 

The crew of skiers and riders will take you on a journey through next-level terrain in some of the most jaw-dropping spots on the planet just as the sun rises and set. 

The event will have prize giveaways from TGR, Yeti, Sierra Nevada, Atomic, Volk, Mammut, Tincup Whiskey and more. 

Jim Ryan and Griffin Post visit Jackson Hole during the feature film Magic Hour, which will premiere in Truckee this Friday, Sept. 30.
Provided/Max Ritter

Everyone in attendance will have a chance at the tour of grand prizes, including a trip to Jackson Hole, the ultimate at-home editing package from Sierra Nevada, a Yeti prize pack, custom skis or snowboards from Tincup Whiskey, Ikon Passes, or a Mammut safety setup including an navy pack. 

Tickets are $60 and include a Tincup Whiskey Tasting, Yeti x TGR swag bags, three months of TGR Premium, athlete/production team Q&A, and access to the screening. This event is 21-plus only. 

A larger event will be held at KT Base Bar at Palisades Tahoe for the winter kick-off celebration of the year. Join Palisades Tahoe at 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, with the screening of the film along with more prize giveaways. 

Many are excited for the film to debut, including professional skier and mountain athlete Amy Jane David, who is making her TGR debut this year. 

“The Magic Hour is when everything clicks,” said David. “Leading up to a magic hour moment, there is so much work, dedication, and passion for years, throw in a little magic, a team, self-belief, and beautiful moments can happen.” 

There will be two premiers of the movie in the Tahoe basin; one in Truckee and one at Palisades Tahoe.
Provided/Nic Alegre

To learn more and purchase tickets for the Truckee premiere of Magic Hour, visit tour.tetongravity.com/event/magic-hour-truckee

To purchase tickets for the Palisades event visit palisadestahoe.com/events-and-activities/events-calendar/teton-gravity-research-presents-magic-hour

EAT and Drink This Week: Keys Café’s Purple Haze and Sausage Breakfast Burrito

On a typical week, we look to feature a dish and drink separately — a dish that looks to squelch those pangs of hunger and a drink that showcases the many places around the lake to whet your whistle. But this week we are changing up a bit and combining forces to give you a full breakfast option at Key’s Café. 

Let’s kick it off with the food side of things – their breakfast burrito. While you do get your choice of meat, we’re talking breakfast sausage this week. The meat is combined with eggs, potatoes, and cheddar cheese, rolled into a flour tortilla and then heated through on a grill press to give it a little exterior texture. 

This week’s featured EAT dish is Keys Café’s Sausage Breakfast Burrito.
Robert Galloway/Tahoe Daily Tribune

While you’re able to add things like avocado (or other veggies), this burrito is so loaded you’d think it’s been on a two-week bender (that’s code for saying this is burrito is huge). And, as a side note, their local Tuesday special gives you a loaded burrito for only eight bucks. If you play your cards right, this is big enough to be breakfast and lunch which makes this one of the better values in town. 

It’s served with a side of house made salsa, which for me is a must – it ratchets everything up with little pops of sweet and savory without going over the top with heat. If you’re as much of a salsa lover as I am, I overload each bite so you might want to ask for an additional serving. 

The sausage adds saltiness to the huge amount of scrambled eggs and creaminess of the country-style potatoes. If you’re looking for a straightforward, well-done breakfast burrito, this is your jam. 

However, if you’re looking for something a little different to help wash it down, here’s where the fun kicks in. Their Purple Haze is a combination of vanilla chai and lavender and is their number one selling chai drink. 

You have the option to get it iced or hot, but in my visit the morning was warm and I just can’t crack through warm drinks on warm days so I opted for the iced version. But, spoiler alert, either option is utterly amazing. 

This week’s featured drink is Keys Café’s Purple Haze.
Robert Galloway/Tahoe Daily Tribune

There is also the option, as with all their drinks, to include whichever milk you’d like. I didn’t stray far from their number one used milk choice (oat milk) and it added a slightly sweet and nutty flavor to the overall smoothness of the drink. In all honesty, I sucked it down way faster than a human should. 

Chai can be a polarizing flavor. Most folks I know are either all in or all out when it comes to chai. For those of you on the fence and have never taken a stroll down Chai Avenue, it has a spicy and sweetness that’s not super far off from pumpkin. 

The chai in this drinks ropes in vanilla to help punch up the sweetness, but the subtle addition of the lavender is the big draw. It is not overflowing with lavender notes, but it in the background just enough to throw out those familiar mellow notes that you can help but feel relaxation seeping into your bones. 

While the name Purple Haze is more famous for being a thrashing and unrelenting Jimi Hendrix tune, the drink side of it is actually quite the opposite – although it’s just as smooth as that left-handed guitar-playing genius. 

The Keys Café is located at 2279 Lake Tahoe Blvd, Ste. 2 in South Lake Tahoe. For menu and drink information visit them online at keyscafetahoe.com or via phone at 530-542-3800. 

Tahoe Action: Wallflowers, Christopher Cross, Fire Fest, Tallac After Dark, Fall Festival on deck

Tallac After Dark 

Join Tallac Historic Site volunteers and staff for an interpretive tour through the American Spiritualism Movement from 7-8:30 p.m. on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, from Oct. 5-21. Discover why so many have tried to speak to the dead and how they did it, with history of seances to Ouija. 

Tickets to the tour are $15 for an adult and $10 for children 12 and under. The tour will begin in the Tallac Museum Courtyard and end inside the Pope House. There is no heat in the house, so dress for cold weather. 

For more information, call 530-541-5227. 

Wallflowers, Christopher Cross at Harrah’s

The Wallflowers are headlining Harrah’s Lake Tahoe at 8 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 30 in the South Shore Room. Doors to the event open at 7 p.m., and children under 6 years old are not allowed at the venue. 

For the last 30 years, Jakob Dylan has led rock’s most dynamic and purposeful groups and they are coming to put on a show made up of timeless songwriting and storytelling mixed with modern musical attack of melodies. 

Tickets are available on Ticketmaster starting at $54.58 (plus taxes/fees) and are subject to change. 

The following night, Christopher Cross brings his 40th Anniversary Tour to the South Shore Room starting at 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1. 

After making history with his 1980 self-titled album and receiving five Grammy awards, Cross is celebrating all that brought him to this moment with a major tour featuring hits like “Sailing” and “Say You’ll Be Mine.” 

Tickets to the event are available on Ticketmaster for starting at $59.17 (plus taxes/fees) and are also subject to change. 

To learn more visit Harrah’s website at caesars.com/harrahs-tahoe/shows

Firefest at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino 

Firefest returns from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, outside the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Stateline. This free event is a great opportunity for families to learn about fire safety and conservation while having fun. 

This event is sponsored by the Lake Tahoe Kiwanis Club and is an annual event hosted by local fire agencies from all around the basin along with Tahoe Resource Conservation District, Cal Fire, and South Tahoe Public Utility District and the USDA Forest Service. 

This event highlights all of Tahoe’s safety agencies and creates a day celebrating fire and life safety for children and families. Helicopters will land directly at the event and there will be multiple different interactive demonstrations and a bounce house. 

Barbecue and beverages will be available for purchase from Kiwanis Club along with snacks at family-friendly prices. 

Fall Festival fundraiser 

Lake Tahoe Education Foundation presents the annual Fall Festival Fundraiser from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, at Lakeview Social. 

The free family-friendly event will have fun activities throughout the day to support the enrichment grants for South Lake Tahoe Performing Arts and the STEM programs at schools. Activities include pumpkin painting, yard games, costume contests, live music, food and drinks, and a root beer float creation station. 

In addition, vendors will be present along with a raffle happening throughout the event. 

To learn more visit ltedf.org

South Lake Tahoe Multicultural Celebration 

The inaugural South Lake Tahoe Multi-Cultural Celebration will begin at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, at Bijou Community Park. Join the City of South Lake Tahoe and the Multicultural Committee to learn about and celebrate different cultures through art, music, food, and entertainment. 

This free one day event will feature cultural displays and live performances, kids’ activities, vendor booths, and food trucks. 

Live performances include an Opening Prayer Ceremony, Eagle’s Wings Pageant Dancers, Gboze Drum and Dance, and more. The Eagle Wings Pageant Dancers were formed in 2006 and will be featured at the event. The group is made up of dances of all ages from Native tribes throughout the Nevada. 

To learn more visit cityofslt.us/1251/Multicultural-Celebration

Live music at Glasses Wine Bar

Tom Barker will be performing at Glasses Wine Bar in Incline Village starting at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 1. Barker will play tunes from the 70’s, 80’s and current tunes with his guitar, and is also open to taking requests to make a show his crowd wants to see.

To learn more about his free performance and see other events at Glasses Wine Bar visit glasseswinebar.com.

Live music at Crystal Bay Club Casino

Crystal Bay Club Casino is hosting Ibibio Sound Machine with Terror Jr. in the Crown Room starting at 8 p.m. this Saturday, Oct. 1. The 21 and over show is $20 in advance and $25 the day of the show (plus taxes/fees). 

The group will be performing from their fourth studio album Electricity, which is considered their most progressive album. 

This is the first studio album produced by the group with external producers since their formation in London in 2013 by lead Singer Eno Williams and saxophonist Max Grunhard. To purchase tickets visit devildogshows.com/crystal-bay-club-casino-events.

Former Douglas County employee averts trial in theft of public money

A former Douglas County Social Services case manager entered a plea on Monday morning as potential jurors were lining up to hear her case.

Rena Petri was the only person indicted by a special grand jury after a tip was called in Douglas County Fraud, Waste, and Abuse Hotline.

Petri denied using her position to take $4,400 from the county, but she brought the money to an earlier hearing.

She is accused of using her position to create fraudulent documents for fictious rental assistance in the amounts of $2,400 and $2,000.

A five-day trial for Petri on two counts of theft was scheduled to begin on Monday.

She is scheduled to be sentenced on Nov. 22.

Laure Tolstad wins inaugural Bob Baunhauser Award

The Kiwanis Club of Lake Tahoe and the South Tahoe Chamber of Commerce awarded their inaugural Bob Baunhauser Excellence in Community Service Outstanding Volunteer award to Laure Tolstad for her work with the Phoenix Food Pantry and more.

Other volunteers strongly considered and highlighted during the awards program include Sherri Acri, Bob Harms, and Ted Turner.

“We thank them all for their generous service to our community. Without selfless people like these, the South Shore would not be as special as it is,” a Kiwanis press release stated.

Bob Baunhauser was a Kiwanian who during his brief lifetime looked for ways to help people without ever being asked. During the program, the audience was informed of some of those deeds and why he is still an important factor in the South Shore community’s lives today.

All volunteers who were recognized were nominated by South Shore community members and were selected by a committee.

Mosquito Fire: Forest Service seizes PG&E equipment

The U.S. Forest Service investigators tasked with determining the cause of the Mosquito Fire have taken possession of PG&E equipment.

“The USFS has indicated to Pacific Gas and Electric Company … an initial assessment that the fire started in the area of the utility’s power line on National Forest system lands and that the USFS is performing a criminal investigation into the 2022 Mosquito Fire,” PG&E confirms in a filing to the California Public Utilities Commission. “On Sept. 24, 2022, the USFS removed and took possession of one of the utility’s transmission poles and attached equipment.”

PG&E officials had early made note of “electrical activity” that occurred close in location and time to when the Mosquito Fire began Sept. 6 in Placer County. At that time, the utility’s representatives noted they did not observe any damage or abnormal conditions to the pole or facilities near Oxbow Reservoir or observe a down conductor in the area or any vegetation issues. The U.S. Forest Service placed caution tape around the base of a PG&E transmission pole, the utility shared in its Sept. 8 report.

The Mosquito Fire, as of press time Tuesday, burned 76,775 acres in El Dorado and Placer counties and was 85% contained; 78 structures have been destroyed with another 13 damaged. At one time nearly 12,000 people were displaced though all evacuation orders have been lifted. Some road closures remain in effect. Visit edcgov.us/wildfire/Pages/Mosquito-Fire.aspx for the latest information.

More than 1,200 personnel continue to tackle the blaze that continues to burn in steep and challenging terrain.

“… crews (continue) work on fire line construction, mop-up and suppression repair operations. Ground and air resources are utilizing direct engagement when possible along the eastern edge of the fire, including the steep terrain of the Rubicon drainage and along the North Fork and Middle Fork of the American River,” a Tuesday morning incident report states. “Patrol and mop-up operations in support of the incident’s full suppression strategy continue throughout the affected areas of the fire.”

The Mosquito Fire is California’s largest wildfire of the season.

Days prior to the U.S. Forest Service’s collection of potential evidence, a lawsuit was filed against PG&E in San Francisco Superior Court, alleging PG&E equipment failure had ignited the Mosquito Fire.

The lawsuit, filed by law firm Singleton Schreiber, claims “PG&E is responsible for the destruction and/or damage of the plaintiffs’ personal property, cherished possessions, major out-of-pocket expenses, mental anguish, medical bills, loss of business income incurred as result of the fire and much more,” states a new release provided by the firm.

“The complaint was filed on behalf of a multitude of individuals who owned property and/or lived in the impacted areas near counties of El Dorado and Placer in California. Their homes, businesses and, in most cases, lives were literally and figuratively burned to the ground by the Mosquito Fire,” the release continues.

“The damage done to several counties by PG&E was entirely avoidable with their knowledge and expertise as electrical service providers” states Gerald Singleton, managing partner of Singleton Schreiber. “PG&E continues to act negligently and has been responsible for more than 1,500 fires across the state leading to deaths, property destruction, financial burdens and ruined lives because of their poorly maintained utility equipment. The utility company continues to put profit over safety in the countless fires they have caused or been associated with.”

PG&E spokeswoman Megan McFarland shared a statement with the Mountain Democrat expressing gratitude for all first responders fighting the Mosquito Fire and reiterating PG&E’s commitment to safety. The statement also notes that the cause of the fire has not yet been determined.

“PG&E is cooperating with the USFS investigation,” the statement adds. “While PG&E is conducting our own investigation into the events that led to the fire, we do not have access to the physical evidence that was collected as part of the USFS investigation over the weekend. As the threat of extreme weather continues to impact our state and the West, we remain focused on preventing major wildfires and safely delivering energy to our customers and hometowns.”

Murder suspect sentenced; family of victim addresses killer

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – Court was called into session under the honorable Suzanne Kingsbury just before 9 a.m. September 27, 2022 and by 2:15 p.m. that afternoon Michael Green was sentenced to 15 years-to-life for the 1985 murder of El Dorado hills journalist, Jane Hylton.

The extraordinary case detonated the lives of multiple people over the course of nearly four decades.

Michael Green sentencing hearing.
Ashleigh Goodwin / Tahoe Daily Tribune

Hylton’s family was torn apart when her daughter, Autumn Solbrack, was implicated during the initial investigation of the murder, with two other individuals, by the investigators of El Dorado county. 

In Solbrack’s victim impact statement she said “aggressive, confession driven detectives” used pressure to induce a false confession from Connie Dahl. This confession was then used to convict Dahl’s then boyfriend Ricky Davis.  Neither of them had any hand in what Solbrack called the violent, vicious and animalistic murder of her mother.

For 15 years, Davis maintained his innocence and only recently was exonerated thanks to advances in forensics. In February of 2020 Davis was cleared by genetic genealogy. 

Those same forensics allowed for Green’s DNA to be harvested from Hylton’s nightgown, where she was bitten by Green the night she was murdered.

The defense presented an argument that due to Green’s age at the time of the murder as well as the lack of violence historically before and after the murder, he should be considered for probation.

Expert Witness Elizabeth Kauffman Ph.D sets up her powerpoint presentation.
Ashleigh Goodwin / Tahoe Daily Tribune

Elizabeth Cauffman PhD, a professor in psychological science education was called to the stand to begin the day in court. Cauffman said she was there in a teaching capacity to educate the court on the development of an adolescent.

Cauffman’s research claims the emotional and cognitive functions progress at varying speeds and during late adolescence, between 15-18 years of age, there is a gap between the two. She further explained that while the late adolescent stage allows the individual to understand right from wrong they are also functioning under diminished capacity for impulse control.

The defense called several witnesses from Green’s childhood, some who maintained relations with him into adulthood as well as Green’s ex wife. Each witness was asked if their opinion changed at the knowledge of his confession. All of the witnesses agreed they had been shocked to find their friend had inflicted any harm, let alone taken someone’s life. Green was described by five individuals who knew him in varying capacities. “Jovial, popular, funny, and loving” are words used to describe him before and after the murder. 

“There’s just not a bad bone in Mike,” ex-wife Karen Green said just before the prosecution presented the victim’s impact statements. 

Hylton’s children stood one by one to describe the “unforgivable loss” that Green had inflicted on their family. 

“The why [it happened] and how different my life could have been will haunt me forever,” the second of the siblings to speak, Heather Purvis-McConnell said. “My mother can finally rest in peace, let the healing begin.”

Ardythe Brandon, Hylton’s fourth child, said “I loved my mother and I assume Michael loves his mother too.”

Instead of a statement about her experience she chose to ask questions, “I want to know what he would feel or what he would say to the person who stabbed your mother 29 times. What would you do if you received an early morning call to tell you ‘your mother is dead’.” 

The court listened as she described, through this line of questioning, gathering her mother’s belongings from the house, seeing blood on the walls and ceiling and walking through blood soaked carpet. 

She finished with a powerful declaration, “We will always have something in common, regretting the stupid decision you made 37 years ago.”

Hylton’s son Ian Purvis echoed his sister’s experiences and pain. The family shares recurring nightmares exacerbated by this continuous uncertainty and the “Crooked finger of blame” pointed at his sister Autumn. His statement was nearly inaudible through grief stricken tears. “All the words we say will never bring my mother back.” 

The last to speak of the siblings, Autumn Sobrack, said “You chose to end my mother’s life, you chose her date of death.” She introduces this as her third victim impact statement in regards to the murder of her mother.

Solbrack addressed the defendant with agony in her voice. “You sit very still and almost in a catatonic state, isn’t it ironic that the stillest person in the room is capable of the most violence?”

Just like the four before her, she had a laundry list of questions. Many of the questions started with what if. In 2005, Solbrack said two “crew-cut thick mustached detectives” came to her home and told her they found the people involved in her mothers murder. She was then repeatedly accused of biting her mother and helping to move her bloody lifeless body from the floor to the bed.  

Solbrack said “If I hadn’t said the word lawyer at that point in the interrogation, who’s to say how much further the tactics of intimidation would have been used”.

After five separate accounts of the direct results of the murder Green committed, prosecution’s Deputy District Attorney Jay Linden read a statement on behalf of the family. 

“You beat her, she had numerous blunt force wounds about her head and face, by your own words you kicked her jaw, you bit her on the shoulder why was that? Was she trying to get away from you? You took out your knife, opened your blade and then you inflicted 29 sharp force wounds, she was stabbed in her head, she was stabbed in the neck, the front and the back she had defensive wounds on hands and arms and tried to keep you from murdering her. You didn’t just kill Jayne that night but destroyed numerous other lives as well. Jayne was 54 years old, and here you are the same age she was, when you killed her.”

Linden asked Green if he had given any thought to who Hylton was; “She was from Canada, working on her real estate license, a journalist for El Dorado Hills. She wrote articles about social events, she had six children, she was a woman who would write poems for each of her children: Mary Jane, Sue Ann, Heather, Ardythe, Ian, and Autumn.” 

In closing arguments Green’s defense attorney, Margaret Huscher, belabored the idea that Green was unable to stop himself, as an adolescent, from doing what he knew to be wrong based on the expert witness first called to the stand. Multiple penal codes and rules of the court were presented to plead mercy from the court. 

Judge Kingsbury interjected “The Court is not going to put him on probation” which halted further comment from the defense.

In response to the defenses’ closing arguments Linden thanked the court and said “This application for probation is offensive. It is a smack to this family who has endured [this] for decades, in essence you’re saying ‘He got away with murder for 37 years so let’s let him get away some more.’

Judge Kingsbury stated she’s seen a multitude of murder cases and heard argument on adolescent development through her experience. 

“After 26 years on the bench this stands out as the single most brutal that I can imagine just based on the sheer number, quantity and type of wounds Miss Hylton sustained. This woman fought and fought and fought and fought for her life.” 

“I have found that closure is a myth,” said Judge Kingsbury prior to delivering Green’s sentence. “Both sides will have to make their own closure, I hope that everyone is able to heal as best as they can. I have no doubt that’s what your mom would have wanted.” She added while she was not involved in the initial case she wanted to apologize on behalf of the county to the family for all they endured.

Prior to delivering a 15-to-life sentence, Kingsbury encouraged Green to use all the resources at his disposal in the California department of rehabilitation. “You’re the key to the questions these people have, doing that could ultimately help you with your outcome as it relates to parole. I’ve heard from your friends that there’s a great side of you you have much to offer. You’re still young enough to come out and have a productive life.”

With that the defendant was sentenced and remanded to the El Dorado County Jail until transfer to the California Department of Rehabilitation. Restitution is to be decided after further consideration by the court.

Tahoe Coalition for Homeless seeks new leadership; touts successful couple of years

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – Tahoe Coalition for the Homeless is searching for new leadership after a successful couple of years that has reduced homelessness by 80% in South Lake Tahoe, the nonprofit announced Tuesday.

Former Executive Director Cheyenne Purrington has left her post to tackle another community’s housing crisis, said a news release.

The Tahoe Coalition for the Homeless purchased the Bird’s Nest (formerly known as El Nido Motel) through Project Homekey and remodeled it.
Provided/TCH

“Cheyenne helped us to gain access to state funding via Project Homekey and set us on our path to successfully transition from an all volunteer, winter shelter to a proactive housing organization,” the release said. “We wish her all the best. While we look for the right leader to help us reach our future goals, our board of directors will be stepping up to aid the team with our daily operations. Our board is dedicated to continuing to offer our life changing services and to completing necessary improvements to our three properties so that we may provide permanent affordable housing with services long into the future.”

The Coalition said it has reduced homelessness by 80%, calls for service and avoidable hospitalizations have been reduced by over 40% and it has recently achieved ‘functional zero’ for veteran homelessness.

In late 2020, TCH purchased three old motels near the “Y” in Tahoe Valley. Over the last two years TCH rehabilitated the properties and converted them to affordable housing with services for the community’s unhoused population. TCH is housing 40 people and hope to bring that number up to 60 over the next year. 

“With this investment in our community, we are transforming our local ecosystem of care from temporary emergency shelter to permanent housing with services,” the release said. “As we head into the colder months, we continue to call for community support including volunteers, donations, and advocacy. 

For more information, email info@tahoehomeless.org.

El Dorado County seniors, disabled can apply for property tax relief

El Dorado County Treasurer-Tax Collector K. E. Coleman shares news from the state Controller’s Office that applications to postpone payment of 2022-23 property taxes are now available.

The Property Tax Postponement Program, administered by the Controller’s Office, allows eligible homeowners to postpone payment of property taxes on their primary residence.

To be eligible owners must be at least 62 years old, blind or have a disability; own and occupy the home; have a total household income in 2021 of $49,017 or less; have at least 40% equity in the home; and meet other requirements. 

Repayment under the PTP Program becomes due when the homeowner moves, sells, transfers title, defaults, refinances, dies or obtains a reverse mortgage.

Funding for the program is limited. Applications will be accepted from Oct. 1 to Feb. 10 and are processed in the order received.

Coleman advised, “This is a popular program. If you are interested and feel that you may qualify, do not delay. Contact the state controller’s team by phone at (800) 952-5661 or by e-mail to postponement@sco.ca.gov.”

Requirements are subject to change without notice if the law is revised. Additional information and eligibility requirements can be found on the Controller’s Office website at bit.ly/postponeproptax.

North Lake Tahoe Fire awarded $1.7 million federal grant

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — The North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District on Sept. 19 was awarded as the administrative agency for a federal grant in the amount of $1,771,818.18.

This grant is for replacement of the Regional Fire Department’s self-contained breathing apparatus through the Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant program. The AFG program is administered by the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency in cooperation with the U.S. Fire Administration.

This is a regional grant administered by NLTFPD and will be divided between the Carson City Fire Department, Tahoe Douglas Fire, East Fork Fire, and Smith Valley Fire. Each organization will be utilizing the grant to replace self-contained breathing apparatus equipment due to their fast-approaching operational life expectancy. The departments will soon be equipped with the most up-to-date safety features. 

The new SCBA’s will enhance interoperability between the mutual aid partners across Carson City, Washoe, Lyon, and Douglas counties.

“Regional cooperation through integrated communication, training and equipment interoperability is a keystone in keeping our communities safe,” said NLTFPD Chief Ryan Sommers. “This is an important step for a systems approach to protecting the areas we serve.”

Genoa Candy Dance Fair likely draws record crowd

Genoa’s annual Candy Dance Craft Fair likely brought a record of people into the tiny town over the weekend.

“It seems like there’s three times as much as there has been in the past,” said Lake Tahoe resident Nathan Cruz.

Thousands of people from Minden, Gardnerville and Genoa, Lake Tahoe, Reno and beyond walked the more than 300 vendors throughout the town.

“We usually come for the nuts and rum runners from the East Fork firefighters,” said mother and daughter Jeanne and Rachel Delalo.

Cruz and his friends Julianna Rogacs, Megan Cruz and Chance Smith enjoy the many food choices and people watching while Reno resident Jeanne Davies said she enjoys shopping all the vendors.

“I start at one end and work my way through,” she said.  “I’ve been coming every year forever now, it seems. I’m starting to recognize some things I’ve gotten in the past so looking for something new is the challenge and fun.”

The record turnout continued into Sunday afternoon, with longtime residents, who usually enjoy a little more leisurely experience, rubbing elbows with thousands of visitors. Generally estimated at 30,000 visitors over the two days, there is actual means of determining the turnout.

In the Genoa Town Hall, where the homemade candy is sold, more than a thousand pounds had been sold by noon, which was distributed with the help of Carson Valley Middle school Leadership students.

The Candy Dance has been a tradition since 1919 and started as a fundraiser to help purchase street lights for the town. More than 100 years later, it continues to be a tradition that brings people from all over the region to Genoa. The two-day event helps fund the town throughout the year.

El Dorado County buying Tahoe property to establish government center

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — El Dorado County will get a new government campus in South Lake Tahoe.

The El Dorado County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, Sept. 20, approved the $7.5 million purchase of four buildings on two parcels currently owned by Barton Health, the Tahoe Basin’s nonprofit healthcare provider.

District 5 Supervisor Sue Novasel, who represents the Tahoe Basin, could hardly wait to make the motion, which was unanimously approved. She called the purchase at 1111 and 1119 Emerald Bay Road in South Lake Tahoe the “cherry on top” of her final term.

“This has been a long time coming,” Novasel said. “It’s very exciting.”

“We have been talking for several years about how to get out of our (Tahoe) El Dorado Center; that’s an end-of-life building,” agreed Laura Schwartz, deputy chief administrative officer, who also noted that rebuilding at the current location proved to be cost-prohibitive.

The new buildings offer nearly 17,500 square feet of space, allowing the county to consolidate many services offered in Tahoe onto one site. Plans include moving staff from Health and Human Services, Department of Transportation, Planning/Building, the Recorder-Clerk’s Office and the Assessor’s Office as well as providing space for the District 5 supervisor to meet with staff and constituents. This reorganization will free up space in the county’s Johnson Center where, Schwartz said, “(We) have our public safety groups in there … bursting at the seams.”

Social Services will remain at the county’s Sandy Way property in South Lake Tahoe.

The Barton Health property covers about 1.77 acres and includes ample parking — a rarity in Tahoe, both Schwartz and Novasel excitedly noted.

During public comment county resident Ken Greenwood, who used to work at the county’s current El Dorado Center in Tahoe, said consolidating departments onto one campus will improve workability. “Finally a feather in our cap, if you will.”

Funding for the property’s purchase comes from the county’s capital reserves, American Rescue Plan Act funds and Public Health funds. The total project amount is budgeted at $10 million as the new buildings will require some remodeling to accommodate staff needs. The county has begun its due diligence process and the sale is expected to close Nov. 15, Schwartz said.

The county plans to sell the old El Dorado Center property with proceeds going back into the county’s capital reserves.

Blue Angels arrive in Carson Valley for Aviation Roundup

The 2022 Aviation Roundup featuring the U.S. Navy Blue Angels is set for this weekend at Minden-Tahoe Airport.

The event features some of the world’s best-known airshow performers and military jet demonstration teams as well as local and regional industry vendors exhibiting the newest innovations and technologies available to the aviation industry.

World-class aviation performers including Bill Stein, The Chuters, Kirby Chambliss and the U.S. Navy Blue Angels take to the skies above Carson Valley, Nevada, performing wild stunts, elegant formations and twists and turns for the crowds below.

Tickets are available online in advance at AviationRoundup.com and are $30 for adults or $20 for children 12-17. A family pack, which includes two adults and up to four children, is $125 and children under 12 are free. Event organizers encourage attendees to avoid the ticket lines and purchase online in advance.

Man found guilty of child molestation faces 26 years-to-life

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — A man was found guilty last week of child molestation and faces 26 years-to-life in prison.

Robert Allen Oakes, 58, was convicted by an El Dorado County jury on Tuesday, Sept. 20, in Department 3 of the South Lake Tahoe courthouse.

Oakes was convicted of three counts of felony child molestation and one additional felony count of meeting with a minor for lewd purposes, said a news release from the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office.

Oakes in 2009-10 was the babysitter for the 5-year-old granddaughter of his then-girlfriend, for a period of several months. During this time, Oakes took advantage of this position of trust and repeatedly molested the young girl, the DA’s office said. Approximately 10 years later, the young girl came forward and disclosed the horrific acts that Oakes had committed against her. 

Following the girl’s disclosure, South Lake Tahoe Police Department detectives apprehended Oakes at South Tahoe High School on Aug. 28, 2019 as he attempted to meet with this young girl again.

The investigation was led by South Lake Tahoe Police Department Detective Allen Molesworth and the case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Ryan Whyte. 

Judge Michael McLaughlin presided over the trial, which took three weeks to complete. 

The news release said Oakes is facing the possibility of 26-years-to-life in prison and is scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 17.

‘Suds and songs’: Luke Combs performs at Stateline (Gallery)

STATELINE, Nev. — The summer concert series at Harvey’s Lake Tahoe came to a close this weekend with back to back performances from one of country music’s most sought after stars, Luke Combs.  

Combs is midway into a limited tour titled, “The Middle of Somewhere Tour” which stops in nine cities across the U.S. The tour appears to be a warm up for his recently announced 2023 World Tour which will take Combs to 16 different countries on three different continents.  

The story of Luke Combs is one that has entranced the public. A high school dropout (by choice) who went from rags to riches, skyrocketing in popularity, becoming one of the highest paid musicians in 2019, all while earning some of the music industry’s most coveted accolades: two grammy nominations, two iHeart Radio music awards, four Academy of Country Music Awards, and six CMA’s. And yet his “average Joe” appeal remains wholly intact.  

Luke Combs prepares to shotgun a beer during his performance at Harvey’s Lake Tahoe on Friday, Sept. 23.
Provided/Sugarwolf

“He’s the kind of guy you want to have a beer with,” said a fan from Friday night’s show … and so they did. Combs kicked off his set (literally) by booting a red solo cup of sudsy liquid into what can now be called “the splash zone.” He belted out lyrics from his most popular singles while shotgunning beers in between. He swooned the audience with poignant country ballads while his acoustic guitar reminded everyone that “beer never broke my heart.” 

Combs played nearly a two hour set on Friday night and his fans drank up every last drop of it with a thirst that seemingly could not be quenched. But eventually, the beertender had to yell “last call” so that he could mosey on over to Las Vegas to perform at iHeart Radio’s annual music festival. But before he did, Combs left everyone in attendance on Thursday and Friday night feeling like their solo cups were half full.

Luke Combs dropkicks his beer into a crowd of cheering fans.
Provided/Sugarwolf
Katie from Reno with her friends waiting to see Luke Combs for the first time.
Provided/Sugarwolf
Luke and his wife from Sacramento ready to see Luke Combs perform.
Provided/Sugarwolf
Sara from Manteca with her friend waiting for Luke Combs to take the stage.
Provided/Sugarwolf
Alyssa from Reno with her group of friends waiting to see Luke Combs.
Provided/Sugarwolf
Jordan Davis performing ahead of Luke Combs at Harvey’s Lake Tahoe on Friday, Sept. 23.
Provided/Sugarwolf
Rachel from Reno with her friend waiting to see Luke Combs perform.
Provided/Sugarwolf
Stacie from Reno with her friend having some fun before Luke Combs takes the stage.
Provided/Sugarwolf
Luke Combs performing at Harvey’s Lake Tahoe on Friday, Sept. 23.
Provided/Sugarwolf

South Tahoe man dies from self-inflicted gunshot wound; Roommate arrested

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — A shooting death last week in South Lake Tahoe was deemed to be self-inflicted and further investigation led to an arrest of the victim’s roommate for illegally possessing a firearm and ammunition, officials reported on Monday.

South Lake Tahoe Police at 6:06 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, received a 911 call about a single gunshot inside a residence and a possible victim of a gunshot wound. 

Officers responded to the 700 block of James Avenue and discovered the victim, Julio Rojas Cruz, 37, of South Lake Tahoe, inside the residence with a single gunshot wound to the head. 

The police department along with South Lake Tahoe Fire Rescue and Cal Tahoe JPA provided aid and then transported Cruz to Barton Memorial Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

Police detectives responded to the scene and over the course of their investigation determined Cruz’s fatal injury was self-inflicted as a result of a negligent discharge of a 9 mm handgun.

Authorities acquired a search warrant and discovered an AR-15 rifle, along with various ammunition, in the bedroom of the victim’s roommate, Noe Corea 35, of South Lake Tahoe. 

Detectives said Corea is a convicted felon and was prohibited from possessing firearms and ammunition. 

He was arrested for being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition and booked into the El Dorado County Jail with a bail set at $85,000. He remains in custody as of Monday morning.

Vail Resorts supports Bread & Broth with meal sponsorships

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Vail’s Epic Promise grant monies have been funding Bread & Broth Adopt A Day of Nourishment sponsorships since 2011, the year that the Adopt A Day program was first implemented.   

Since the Epic Promise Grant funds cover the cost of 12 Adopt A Days yearly, Heavenly and Kirkwood mountain resorts crew members alternate monthly meal sponsorships. Since their initial participation, all of the AAD crews from the two Vail Resorts have been a delight to have helping with the weekly Monday Meals served at St. Theresa Church’s Grace Hall.  

Heavenly Mountain Resort sponsored the Aug. 15 Monday Meal and Sonia Ramirez, Heavenly’s Food and Beverage Manager, joined the Bread & Broth volunteers to help with the dinner’s setup, serving, and cleanup. Sonia was an enthusiastic volunteer and her smile and generous spirit was just contagious.  

“It was a great experience,” shared Sonia. “Everyone is super nice and I learned to introduce myself and ask how everyone was doing.”

On Sept. 19, it was Kirkwood Mountain Resort’s turn to host the Monday Meal Adopt A Day.  Sonia Ramirez had enjoyed herself so much at the August meal, that she once again joined her fellow Vail crew members to volunteer at their AAD meal. It was a full crew from Kirkwood, and included Daniel Deemer, Base Operations Mgr; Cara Bourne, Skier Services; Jimi Herbst, IT specialist; Adam Ikemire, Patrol Director; and Mark Phillips, Facilities Mgmt.   It was Daniel’s first-time volunteering at a Bread & Broth meal and shared that the experience “brings to light all of the challenges of living in a resort community.”  

Vail Resorts Sonia Ramirez helps serve guests on Aug. 15.
Provided/Bread & Broth

Bread & Broth is very fortunate to be a recipient of the generosity of Vail’s Epic Promise Grant and to have the hardworking but fun-loving Vail team members join the Bread & Broth volunteers provide a hot, nutritious, full-course meal to food insecure members of our community. Accolades to Vail and their outstanding team members for their commitment to helping those in need.

Submitted by Bread & Broth

The 10 Best Spring Skiing Resorts In North America

Mt Hood Timberline Oregon skier spinning best spring skiing

Does the spring equinox officially bring an end to winter? Does that mean your ski and snowboard season is over? The answer to that question is absolutely not! Think we’re crazy? Don’t know what we’re talking about? Let us prove it to you. Put down the bathing suits and grab the snow gear. Put that trip to the Caribbean on hold. This spring, head to the mountains! Why you ask? The days are longer, the crowds have reduced to a trickle, and the winter storms have given way to sunshine and warm temperatures. If you haven’t taken a trip out West this year, now is the time! Here are the 10 best spring skiing locales in North America!

 

Why You Should GO!

  • Great deals to stay & ski
  • Sunny weather and warm temps
  • Non-existent crowds
  • The ability to do other stuff like golf, mountain bike, AND ski in the same day
  • Chance to get in a sneaker pow day

Before you pick your resort, there are a few things you should know about spring skiing. First, don’t expect to ride a full day. Instead, focus on the full experience. The Après ski is almost as important as the skiing in spring. Is there a cool town to hang in? Do you have a place to grill and a patio to chill? How about a mountain bike park or a golf course? Now you feelin’ it? These are quite different questions to ask than a winter trip, right?

 

Next, don’t expect the resorts to be at full operation, but this is good news. It means you’ll have a ton of terrain all to yourself and can lap those runs until you can’t feel your legs. Lastly, even in April or early May, there’s still a chance for a sneaker pow day. We’ve had quite a few, and they are awesome! If you want to learn the in’s & outs of spring skiing, what gear to bring, & why it’s our favorite time to go on a ski vacation, check out our comprehensive spring skiing guide:

Things To Consider When Picking A Spring Locale

Where should you go? Here are the things to consider when picking a resort:

  • Historically open late into the season
  • Large amount of terrain above treeline
  • Deep snowpack
  • Ski resort that’s received lots of snow for the season (at least annual average)
 

Best Spring Skiing Resorts in North America

#10 Killington

Average April/May Snowfall: 24 inches

Projected Closing Day: Typically May dependent on weather

best spring skiing in the US Killington Vermont
Skiing over previous Memorial Day Weekend – Image appears courtesy: Killington Ski Resort

We had to at least tip our hat towards the East. Besides Mammoth on our list, Killington also pushes the envelope on extending their season as long as possible. Through mid-April, there’s a good chance the majority of the mountain will be open for you to shred. Killington has even been known to stay open into late May and even into June. With a summit elevation of only 4,241 feet, how can that be? They do this by making snow on one run called Superstar all winter long. The snow on this trail stacks up to nearly three stories tall. Talk about dedication to skiing and snowboarding!

Booking.com
 

#9 Loveland

Average April/May Snowfall: 71 inches

Average Maximum Snow Depth: 70 inches

Terrain Open: 100% open through end of April conditions permitting

Projected Closing Day: Early May

Loveland is one of the best spring skiing resorts in North America
Image appears courtesy: Loveland Ski Area

Most people zoom past as they head to one of the major resorts like Keystone, Copper, or Winter Park. A no frills destination, Loveland is a great example of a mountain still tapped into the soul of skiing and snowboarding. The focus is all about the mountain and not about real estate. Receiving some of the highest snowfall counts in the region and hugging the continental divide, this translates to a season that starts in October and lasts into May or longer. Powder days still happen often in April! By this time of year, the snowpack is deep enough, allowing you to access all of the cool terrain Loveland has to share. This quaint mountain packs quite the punch and is highly recommended. The only reason it’s low on the list is because of its early closing date.

 

#8 Whistler Blackcomb

Average April/May Snowfall: 43 inches

Average Maximum Snow Depth: 106 inches

Terrain Open: As much as possible through April 18th and approximately 1,300 vertical feet of terrain serviced by only the Emerald Chair after April 18th.

Projected Closing Date: May 23

Whistler Blackcomb British Columbia BC Canada best spring skiing apres corduroy
Whistler Peak Image taken by: Jorge Alvarez

Whistler embodies what every ski resort wishes to be. The village is car-less and there’s a plethora of different priced options to eat, drink, and hang out across town. The bad news first is the weather. With close proximity to the coast, there’s a possibility of overcast/rainy weather but this is more likely mid-winter than in the spring. Don’t worry though. Whistler makes up for it in spades with how many things you can do besides skiing.

Towards the end of April, you can ski in the morning in the upper alpine bowls and then mountain bike in the afternoon on the bottom half of the mountain. April is also when the largest winter sports and music festival in North America takes place right next to the gondola.

 

Will Whistler Stay Dedicated To Spring Skiing?

Over the past few years, Whistler’s dedication to spring skiing after April continues to dwindle so they’ve moved down the list. Before Vail’s purchase, they used to have AT LEAST 2,500 vertical feet of skiing and thousands of acres of glorious alpine terrain accessed by three lifts. Now, it’s just one. Good news is if you visit in May, you can still ski in the morning and mountain bike in the afternoon.

 

Booking.com

#7 Snowbird

Average April/May Snowfall: 74 inches

Average Maximum Snow Depth: 109 inches

Terrain Open: 100% open through end of April conditions permitting but typically only Little Cloud and Mineral Basin Express in May to closing

Projected Closing Day: Still to be announced but traditionally at least through Memorial Day

Snowbird Ski area on July 4th
In good years there’s even skiing on July 4th – Image appears courtesy: Snowbird Resort – Photo by: Dave Amirault

If Alta is the powder capital of Utah then Snowbird is the spring skiing locale. Being the highest ski resort in Utah and most of its terrain facing north, these attributes help keep the snow in its best condition possible. In April, they receive on average nearly 64 inches, meaning the base actually gets refreshed. Finally, with it only being 30 minutes outside of Salt Lake City, the gateway to what some consider the richest and most diverse natural surroundings of any major city, you have access to hiking, mountain biking, and even hot springs. Good times for sure!

 

 

#6 Timberline / Mt. Hood Meadows

Average April/May Snowfall:  37 inches

Maximum Snow Depth: 131 inches

Terrain Open: 100% open through closing at Mt. Hood Meadows and 1,500 vertical feet on the Palmer snowfield (@ Timberline) which is skiable all summer

Projected Closing Day: May 7th (Mt.Hood Meadows) / September (Timberline)

Mt Hood Meadows Oregon best spring skiing
Heather Bowl, from the top of A-Zone Image taken by: Ben McLeod

The actual Mt. Hood contains four major resorts that sit on its flanks each offering different terrain and feel. One of those is Timberline. Is stays open all year round except for a few weeks of maintenance in September. It’s THE home for summer skiing and snowboarding in North America. Summer camps such as Windell’s build their own private parks for campers to shred. And the public gains access to groomed corduroy off of the Palmer chair. If you’re looking for a bit more of a challenge, Mt. Hood Meadows just down the road is open through at least the first week of May.

Mt Hood Timberline Oregon skier spinning best spring skiing
Spring Skiing: Freestyler’s Delight Image taken by: Nathaniel “Ragingterror” Hayden Twitter @Ragingterror

If comparing Oregon for the spring season, Mt. Bachelor offers more extensive terrain with far superior snow conditions to either of the Mt. Hood areas. Think about timing if heading to Oregon so you get the best spring skiing for the time you plan to hit the slopes.

 

#5 Lake Louise / Sunshine Village – SkiBig3

Average April/May Snowfall: 35 inches

Maximum Snow Depth: 81 inches

Projected Closing Date: May 23 (Sunshine Village) & May 8 (Lake Louise)

Sunshine Village Alberta Canada best spring skiing chairlift
Riding Goat’s Eye Over Village Image taken by: Doug Zwick

Always one of the first to open and last to close, spring is prime time for Lake Louise and Banff Sunshine Village. The extremely cold weather has retreated and the sun has begun to shine. Don’t fret about the snow conditions though. Even now, mid-winter powder conditions prevail due to its northern latitude. And for those looking for a party scene, Banff is only a few miles down the road. This town is filled with amazing cuisine, great shopping, and awesome watering holes. If that wasn’t enough, the views of Lake Louise from the summit are some of the most amazing in the world. One thing to consider with Alberta is to make sure they’ve had an average to above average winter for maximum coverage. One additional thing to note is that Banff Sunshine Village and Lake Louise are 36 miles apart.

Booking.com

#4 Alpine Meadows

Average April/May Snowfall: 46 inches

Maximum Snow Depth: 115 inches

Terrain Open: As much as possible

Projected Closing Date: Mid-May

Alpine Meadows best spring skiing above treeline
Alpine Meadows Image taken by: Paul R Bolt

Its bigger brother to the North, Palisades Tahoe, may get all the glamour, but this resort is nothing to sneeze at. Alpine Meadows is a big craggy mountain with most of its terrain above tree line. Tahoe’s climate of cold freezing nights and warm sunny days plus the ski resort’s topography creates some of the best corn you’ll find anywhere. Palisades Tahoe may be open longer but Alpine’s terrain lends itself to be the one you should try to hit before it closes for the season. For more about corn snow, check out our spring skiing guide found here.

 

#3 Arapahoe Basin

Average April/May Snowfall: 66 inches

Average Maximum Snow Depth: 81 inches

Terrain Open: 700+ acres through closing (almost all of the terrain)

Projected Closing Date: At least end of May but most likely longer

Arapahoe Basin Colorado A-Basin best spring skiing rail shredding
Spring Shredding Image taken by: Zach Dischner

Arapahoe Basin could be considered the “King of Spring” for the Rockies. Always pushing the envelope to stay open until the snow melts, there have been years that they’ve been skiing until July 4th. Typically in April, it’s less about the corn and more about skiing and snowboarding their packed powder with the steep Palivaccini terrain facing more north and ranging from 10,800′ to 12,200′. The parking lot is called the “Beach” and you can watch people skiing down the mountain as you grill right in front of your car. If this isn’t on your bucket list to visit… it should be!

 

#2 Mammoth Mountain

Average April/May Snowfall: 68 inches

Average Maximum Snow Depth: 133 inches

Terrain Open: 100% in April; at least 2,000 acres through May; 500-1,000 acres through June and July

Projected Closing Day: Until the snow melts so could be as late July 4th or even later like last season.

The Minarets Mountains from Mammoth Mountain during spring skiing
Photo by: Local Freshies

Mammoth is a unique mountain compared to the others on our list. First, due to it close proximity to the Pacific Ocean, they receive snowfall with higher moisture content. Second, it’s elevation is comparable to the resorts in Colorado. What these two facts translate to is a deep snowpack with warm days and freezing nights, helping ensure that the best conditions are possible even into May! Mammoth’s dedication to grooming and having at least 2,000+ acres open makes it a great candidate to hit in late spring.

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#1 Mt. Bachelor

Average April/May Snowfall: 68 inches

Average Maximum Snow Depth: 145 inches

Projected Closing Day: May 29th

Terrain Open: 100% in April and at least 2,000 acres with over 3,100 vertical feet through closing

Mt Bachelor Spring Skiing
Three sisters in the distance as you descend Mt Bachelor

This place should be on everyone’s bucket list for spring skiing and snowboarding. It could even be argued that it’s better to visit Mt. Bachelor in the spring than in the winter. This is mainly because of the Summit chairlift. Accessing 1,700 vertical feet all above treeline, it’s closed at least 30% of the time during the winter due to storms barreling Mt. Bachelor. In the spring though, this sometimes elusive terrain is wide open and ready for shredding.

Find Your Basecamp For Spring Fun



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With nearly 2,000+ acres available to you, Bachelor has some of the largest terrain footprints open in late season. In between storms when the temperatures rise, you will find plenty of corn ripe for the harvesting. The resort is a giant dormant volcano, allowing you to use it as a sundial finding the perfect conditions based on day & time. When the snow begins to sour in the afternoon, the Après scene heats up. Being next to Bend, OR, an outdoor mecca, there’s plenty to keep you busy. From hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, paddle boarding, and even golfing, you’re sure to find an activity to occupy the rest of your day. After you’ve worked up a good thirst, there are dozens of breweries with relaxed atmospheres to sit back and wind down.

For more about Bend and the breweries, check out our write up here. If you’re looking for a guide to Mt. Bachelor, we got you covered there as well! Read our Ultimate Guide to Bachelor here.

March shouldn’t be the end of your season but rather the time for you to turn up the volume! What will you plan for April, May, and even June? Happy Spring Shredding!

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