Archive for the ‘Winter Recreation’ Category

New Lodge proposed for Tahoe XC   Leave a comment



By Tim Hauserman.

In the mid 1970’s a nine-hole golf course was constructed at the back of The Highlands development, three miles outside of Tahoe City. When the golf course failed a few years later, the club house and surrounding trails became home to Tahoe Nordic Ski Area, followed by Lakeview Cross Country Ski Area, before settling in for the long haul as the non-profit Tahoe Cross Country Ski Area. Tahoe Cross Country has 65 kilometers of trails which loop up and around the rolling countryside and climb to views of Lake Tahoe on Tahoe City Public Utility District and Burton Creek State Park lands.

While the lodge located on TCPUD land has served well for decades, the Board of Directors of the Tahoe Cross Country Ski Education (TCCSEA), which runs the ski area, as well as the TCPUD, have for a number of years entertained the idea of a major upgrade of the facility, non-profit cross country ski areas, however, especially given the vagaries of our winters, are not flush with cash.

Then along came John Mozart. He purchased a lakefront estate along the Gold Coast in the Rubicon area of Tahoe’s West Shore in 2012. His plan was to construct a new home on the property, but he also wanted to preserve the existing two story home which was built in 1936 by the Schilling Family. It had wood trusses, high ceilings and was a classic Old Tahoe style home. TCCSEA accepted the building as a donation, and it was dissembled and stored in a warehouse, awaiting reconstruction on a new site.




Now the TCCSEA and the TCPUD are evaluating five possible sites to construct the building. In addition to the new lodge, the TCCSEA would also like to alleviate two problems with the current site: Provide more parking, and move the trailhead so it doesn’t sit at the bottom of a hill, a challenge for beginning skaters.

Information gathered at a number of public workshops, and through the conducting of a survey is about to be provided to the TCPUD who will then choose a site after public hearings. Once the site is chosen, environmental review will begin as well as a major fundraising effort to reconstruct the buildings as well as additional lodge space. Hopefully within a few years the lodge will become a great new addition to the community.

To learn more about the project go to




Note: I have worked at Tahoe Cross Country for about 15 years and direct the Strider Gliders program. I first started skiing the trails at what was then known as Tahoe Nordic in 1985.



The Billy Dutton Uphill   Leave a comment



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By Tim Hauserman

Photos by Far West Nordic Association.

This Sunday April 23rd is the Billy Dutton Uphill. It is tougher then it looks, and it looks pretty damn tough. The event climbs up the Mountain Run at Squaw Valley. It’s just around five kilometers to the top, a piece of cake for a cross country skier or runner right? Well, wrong, because it’s 2000 feet of climbing. It’s hard, but it’s also spectacularly beautiful to ski the Squaw terrain in the early morning, enjoy an awesome party at the top with an always cool group of local folks, and then enjoy the view from the tram as you head back down the hill. Or you can be one of the truly adventurous and join a few crazies who ski back down the hill on their skinnies.

The race is run in memory of Billy Dutton, one of the founders of the Tahoe Nordic Search and Rescue. He was a Squaw Valley kid who used to like to ski up the mountain on his classic skis before succumbing to cancer several decades ago. Members of his family join the event every year.




The Billy Dutton attracts cross country skiers, and snowshoers/runners and has different prize categories for each. A few runners have come close to winning the event every year, and are often in the lead until the several hundred yard downhill just before the finish. The Billy Dutton is a fundraiser for Far West Nordic’s Junior program. The party at High Camp includes an excellent silent auction and raffle prizes, as well as music and food and a chance to catch your breath while enjoying the amazing view.

Every skier or runner should try the Billy Dutton at least once. I’ve done it about five times, even though every time I do it I wonder why I’m doing this to myself once again. The trick of course is to ski slow and steady, which has never been my strong suit. I go way too fast out of the gate, followed by leaning over my poles gasping for breath. Whatever your technique, it’s a true iconic Tahoe event that should definitely be on every cross country skier or runners bucket list.


The Great Ski Race!   Leave a comment

By Tim Hauserman


March 5, 2017 will be the 40th Anniversary of The Great Ski Race. The race, which travels from Tahoe Cross Country Ski Area on Dollar Hill near Tahoe City to the Cottonwood Restaurant above downtown Truckee, has in the past attracted up to 1000 racers. It’s a major fundraiser for the Tahoe Nordic Search and Rescue Team and after a few years of less than stellar snow conditions, it looks like the TNSAR Team will have a deep snow base to work with to make the race spectacular.
For many local cross country skiers, The Great Ski Race is the iconic event each winter. The 30 kilometer point to point course takes the skier on a long climb to the top of Starratt Pass, where they find Soup Station One for drinks and snacks. Then the fun begins as a fast downhill rolls over a series of whoop de doos and “S” turns. While it is mostly downhill after the pass, there are a few hills that can be a gut buster after you get used to cruising the downhill. Just before the end, racers can see Truckee as they slide along the narrow Chute, before reaching the wide steep hill above Cottonwood. Once part of a small downhill ski area, the face is pretty dang steep for folks on skinny skis, but if you crash at the bottom, the crowd with beers in their hands will cheer you on. Once you get up and dust off the snow, you can grab some grub and a beer yourself and cheer on the next folks trying to tuck the hill.

The Tahoe Nordic Search and Rescue Team are a great group of guys and gals who head out into blizzards in the middle of the night to save folks who get lost in the snow. Over the last 40 years they have saved dozens of lives in the backcountry. Money from The Great Ski Race provides the all volunteer organization with the tools they need to successfully do their mission safely. One of the founders Doug Read is profiled in this article that I recently wrote:
For information and to register for The Great Ski Race go to: The Great Ski Race




Lynn Richardson . Coldwell Banker Real Estate . Lake Tahoe & Truckee

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Lynn Richardson . Coldwell Banker Real Estate . Lake Tahoe & Truckee


Lynn Richardson . Coldwell Banker Real Estate . Lake Tahoe & Truckee

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