Location: Reno, NV
Resorts: 10 out of 50
Mt. Rose is the closest ski area to Reno. Only 22 miles away. It’s a ripping hill with Tahoe’s highest base elevation. We drove up in another snowstorm and arrived for our sixth powder day in a row. Seven more inches of Sierra Cement had fallen which meant that The Chutes, the steepest runs at Mt. Rose, wouldn’t be open until noon while ski patrol made sure that they were safe.
Mt. Rose has a pile of specials and today we were taking advantage of their Twofer Tuesday — two lift tickets for the price of one. This is still a good deal even if you’re alone. There’s always someone who needs to buddy up.
Ski patrol was true to their word and by noon, the Chutes were all opened. They were terrifying. And I’m not talking about the runs. It seemed like nobody in the Chutes followed any basic backcountry protocol. Five people all riding at once. Skiers stopped in the middle of the choke point taking pictures. It was a mess, but once the initial crowd surge passed, the Chutes were our favorite section of Mt. Rose.
I started my tour of the Chutes right at the top with Jackpot followed by El Cap. These are the longer runs although not necessarily the steepest. Plenty of more mellow terrain can be found lower down on Beehive and Nightmare. These have some super fun trees, but are shorter runs.
As the main chutes became more tracked out, I grabbed Snooze out of the bar and trekked way over to Cardiac Ridge, and finally to Exhibition and Lowball which still had about a foot of fresh snow. There’s a bunch of soft drops over here and I gaped my way over a few seven footers.
Looking at the map might make it seem like to takes some time to get back to the top of Mt. Rose, and while we never clocked it, it never felt that long. The triple Chuter chair unloads you right at the high speed sixer. Total lift time is probably around ten minutes until you’re back at the top of the peak.
We grabbed a quick beer in the comfortable lodge at the base of the hill. But at $3.50 for a Miller High Life, we only stayed for one. Where did we go? Where do you think? Back to the RV for some homemade guacamole, a shot ski, and then off to the to the Tahoe Biltmore.
The Cheat Sheet:
Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe
22222 Mt. Rose Hwy
Reno, Nevada 89511