A Weekend with the Bay Area Ski Bus
By Rachel Friedman
In my short time living in the Bay Area, I have met my fair share of skiers and snowboarders. Having recently moved from Vail, Colorado, I welcome any conversation that has to do with snow. Transportation to Lake Tahoe comes up often. Living five minutes away from the mountain, transportation was never a problem. But it is a true dilemma for a lot of Bay Area residents. And THIS is where the Bay Area Ski Bus comes into play. For all you skiers and snowboarders who don’t own a car or have a ride for the weekend, the BASB has got your back. With three different trip options, there is something for everyone: the One Day Trip ($109), the 2-Day Hotel Trip ($269), and the 2-Day Ski House Trip ($389). My boyfriend, Mike, and I were lucky enough to spend a recent weekend in North Lake Tahoe, courtesy of the BASB and their hospitable crew. We sampled part of the One Day Trip and part of the 2-Day Ski House Trip.
Since we had to catch the bus at 5am, we dragged ourselves out of sweet slumber to the bus pick up. Riding the BASB let us catch up on the rest of our much-needed sleep. There’s a lot to be said about curling up in a ball to catch some zzzz, knowing that when you awake, the mountain will be waiting for you. An hour out from Squaw, our hosts, Kelly and Loretta, woke us with bagels, Danishes, yogurt, and juice to fuel our adventure for the day. YUM!
The bus parked close to the base area and the hosts swiftly passed out our ski tickets and gave us instructions for the day. Mike and I got in a full day of riding, though the conditions weren’t exactly what we had hoped. Dreams of pow turns will have to wait for another trip. At 3:30pm, the BASB hosts set up an après ski spread with wine, beer, hot chocolate, and snacks. If we had driven ourselves up to Tahoe, having a couple of cocktails after riding all day wouldn’t be ideal, but with the BASB, all we would have to do is get on the bus and watch movies until we got home.
Instead of getting on the bus back to San Francisco, we hopped on the van to the Ski House in Tahoe Donner with our host, Nick. We stopped at the grocery store so we and the other guests could pick up some dinner supplies. The house was cozy, and everyone in our group of eight had a room. It was a great atmosphere for meeting potential new ski buddies. We soaked in the hot tub, played pool, ate dinner, and just hung out. Brad, the caretaker, and our hosts, Nick and Kelly, added a great dynamic to the group. In the morning, they cooked breakfast before we headed out to Sugar Bowl. Because our group was small, our timing was flexible, and we didn’t feel rushed. The van dropped us off right at the base of Sugar Bowl and we spent the day exploring this hidden gem of a mountain.
If you want to go shred the mountains of Tahoe, the Bay Area Ski Bus offers an efficient, organized, and laid-back experience. You’ll feel relaxed and you can get all the days you need on the hill. Check out the Bay Area Ski Bus for dates and prices. Follow me on Twitter @RachShredGnar.