One last chance to hit the slopes

One last weekend on the slopes - Alpine Meadows on Saturday and Squaw Valley Sunday.

Missed last weekend because of a dandy 10-mile hike in Sequoia National Forest.

Followed an old road built by a socialist commune in the late 1980s. Views are awesome, and the leaders, the forest's naturalist, a great talker.

So after this Sunday I'll set back the safety bindings on the skis (remembering the DIN setting, of course), put some oil on the edges and dribble a coat of wax on the bases. Ptex does dry out and the wax protects it. It's been a fine ski and boarding year, and despite global warming the snow has held up (and still does).

Now time to turn to hiking, looking forward to Horsetail Falls. Drove past it last weekend and it was truly a lashing tail of a horse.


Alpine Meadows has set season pass prices for the upcoming 2005/2006 winter season. Prices, decreased from past years, will provide season pass purchasers with great options, and up to a 20 percent discount off 2004/2005 rates.

The resort has also announced plans to install a new high-speed quad in its Sherwood Bowl area. Anyone who has skied the Sherwood area knows what a great upgrade this is to some of Alpine's underused sites. "Northern Californians, as well as destination skiers and snowboarders, have long treasured the Alpine Meadows experience," shared Matt Janney, Alpine Meadows boss. "With our new season pass prices and the upcoming high-speed Sherwood Express chairlift, a day at Alpine will be even better."

The new season pass options include a variety of adult, teen, and young adult packages. Alpine's' 2005/2006 full adult pass offers unrestricted daily access to ski and snowboard terrain for $759, compared to the same pass priced at $929 last season. In addition, the Alpine Meadows Spring pass priced at $99 is applicable toward the purchase of a full adult pass.

Season passes are available for purchase online at, or call (530) 583-4232 for details.


A fine lineup of Grammy-nominated artists and performances is scheduled for the third Annual Lake Tahoe Smooth Jazz Festival in Squaw Valley Memorial Day Weekend May 27-29.

Presented by Art Good's JazzTrax, in conjunction with Squaw, the Resort at Squaw Creek and The Village at Squaw Valley USA, The Lake Tahoe Jazz Festival features big-name jazz performances in two locations in Squaw. Internationally known jazz artists scheduled to perform include Peabo Bryson, Lalah Hathaway, Kirk Whalum, Brian Culbertson, Paul Jackson Jr., Norman Brown, Brenda Russell, Everette Harp, Bobby Caldwell, Jeff Kashiwa, Kim Waters, Marion Meadows and Rick Kelly.

The Festival kicks off with two Friday evening shows from 'The Sax Pack,' starring Kashiwa, Waters and Meadows in the Resort at Squaw Creek's Alpine Ballroom.

Saturday afternoon jazz lovers can enjoy an outdoor concert with Bobby Caldwell and Rick Kelly on the Olympic House sundeck. During the show, Rick Kelly treats guests to a presentation of 'Soul Ballet' and his No. 1 hit "Cream."

Sunday afternoon at noon, also at Squaw's outdoor venue, is "Norman Brown's Summer Storm," starring Brown, Bryson, Russell, Harp and Darius.

Highlighting this spring's festival are two Sunday evening performances of "Forever for Always for Luther" in the Resort at Squaw Creek's ballroom. The show is the West Coast premiere of the Grammy Nominated GRP Tribute to Luther Vandross, starring Lalah Hathaway, Kirk Whalum, Brian Culbertson and Paul Jackson Jr.

Tickets to all the Smooth Jazz Festival events range in price from $35 to $75 and can be purchased online at Show times are Friday evening at 7 and 9 p.m., Saturday and Sunday afternoon at noon and Sunday evening at 7 and 9 p.m. For festival lodging packages call Squaw Valley Central Reservations at (800) 545-4350.


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