The Weekend Drop: March 16 Edition

It has been another beautiful week of sunshine and fun at Northstar California. After a full week of vitamin D, the common sight on the slopes recently has been goggle tans and Hawaiian shirts. Summer may feel just around the corner, but Mother Nature is about to remind us that winter isn't over quite yet. That's right, more fresh snow is in the forecast.

Warm temperatures and clear skies have created ideal surfaces for first-time skiers and snowboarders. Because let's be honest, everybody falls when they're first learning, and that soft snow makes for more smiles and less bruises. And that's where the nationally acclaimed Burton Snowboard Academy and Adventure, Guiding, & Learning Center come in, where I spent my Tuesday of this past week tagging along on a children's terrain park lesson at the Academy.

It has been over a decade since I strapped into my first Burton snowboard, and let me tell you, a lot has changed. Snowboarding was still an emerging sport in the early 2000s when I first started snowboarding, and equipment simply wasn't what it is now. But Burton has taken the lead in beginner equipment with their Learn to Ride (LTR) snowboards and bindings. Burton's boards are specifically designed to address problems that beginner snowboarders frequently encounter, such as catching edges. Boards come in almost every size, all the way down to 70 cm for the smallest shredders. These boards feature a retractable "Riglet Reel," which is used to help tow kids around and introduce them to the sideways motion of snowboarding.

Northstar is also home to the one and only Burton Academy Riglet Park, which is full of small terrain park features for kids ages three to six. Next time you're at Mid-Mountain with your little ones, make sure to head over to the Burton Academy and check it out!

Kids aren't the only ones who get to enjoy awesome terrain park features at Northstar California. The parks team has been working hard to build and open new features every single day. After several weeks of closure, the Straits officially reopened at the beginning of the week with three large jumps. All eight terrain parks are now open with a combined total of 221 features for all skill levels.

As previously mentioned, winter isn't over yet. According to the National Weather Service, a few cloudy days are in the immediate forecast before more precipitation moves into the area. The beginning of next week is forecasted to bring fresh snow as a westerly flow from the Pacific becomes active in the Sierras. While the storm shouldn't be as severe as recent systems, it will trigger winter conditions and possible traffic and mountain delays. Keep an eye on @NorthstarMtn on Twitter for current information regarding mountain operations, traffic updates, and special events. (You do not need a Twitter account to view these updates.)

This upcoming weekend is especially exciting, with holiday festivities and food celebrations, which you can find out more about below! We'll see you in the Village and on the hill.

Upcoming Events:

  • (3/17) St. Patrick's Day Celebration. Still searching for St. Patrick’s Day plans? Join us in the Village on March 17th for a scavenger hunt, face painting, balloon twisting, and a skiing Leprechaun. Live music and traditional Irish food and drink specials will also be available, including green beer and more.

  • (3/17) Mountain Table Dinner. The Mountain Table Dinner Series offers guests a unique dining experience in the iconic Zephyr Lodge. This dinner will feature wines from Merryvale Vineyard which will be complemented by a menu of locally and regionally sustained produce and proteins.

  • (3/18) S'moresapalooza. Celebrate your favorite gooey treat with live music, face painting and a S'mores walk, where each station will have a different spin on the traditional S'more, all taking place in the Village at Northstar at 4 p.m.  

Ahlani is a wanderlust-inspired adventurer and aspiring travel writer born and bred out of the Sierra Nevadas. She is passionate about combining her love of travel with her love of words while pushing creative boundaries and exploring the great outdoors. Ahlani received dual degrees in public relations and international affairs from the University of Nevada, Reno and plans on chasing powder and working in the mountains for years to come. She's lived in the Bahamas and New Zealand, and spent time in 47 other countries, but Lake Tahoe will always hold her heart. Read more about her adventures here.