Voted America’s Best Ski Resort by USA Today Readers in 2016, Squaw Valley offers over 170 trails, 16 bowls, and 4 terrain parks on 3600 skiable acres. Guests flock to participate in the many activities happening in the Village or on the slopes and enjoy the numerous blue sky days. Squaw Valley keeps visitors returning year after year to their trails that appeal to all levels of skier or snowboarder; 25 percent of their trails are for beginners, 45% for intermediate and 30% for advanced.
In order to provide access to all the trails, Squaw has built 27 lifts, from a telecord to high speed six packs, plus an aerial tram and a funitel. A funitel is a fairly recent style of gondola lift that is faster, considered more stable and can operate in winds up to 62mph. There are not many resorts that have them as of yet.
Squaw Valley was envisioned by Wayne Poulson who purchased 2000 acres from the Southern Pacific Railroad. When the resort officially opened in 1949 it was overseen by Alec Cushing, a Wall Street Lawyer, who helped find investors and clandestinely pushed Poulson off the Board of Directors just before the resort opened. Squaw Valley was only 6 years old when the Olympics were scheduled to be held there after a brazen bid to the committee. The young resort needed to quickly become Olympic ready when it surprisingly won! By 1960, investors had upgraded the facilities to make it worthy of hosting the 1960 Winter Olympics. It did not disappoint.
Squaw Valley joined with Alpine Meadows in 2012 and has doubled the skiable terrain. Together they incorporate 8 peaks, 44 lifts and more than 270 trails. There are plans to physically merge the two resorts with White Wolf Ski Resort which sits on the mountain saddle between the two. Ultimately, a lift will take guests back and forth between locations, creating the second largest resort in North America after Whistler Blackcomb.
Today Squaw Valley Village is a hive of activity with its many restaurants, bars, and shops. High Camp, accessible by tram and located at 8200’, is a favorite destination for meals, ice skating and panoramic views. Check their calendar of events, as there is always something happening.