I’m back from a sunny, outdoorsy, active weekend at North Star Ski Resort at Lake Tahoe. Joe and his friends from work got a house for the weekend and I’ve been wanting to ski at least once this season, so this trip was the perfect opportunity to get some refreshing time in the mountains and spend quality time with Joe’s friends.
Friday: Looong drive up
One Friday, Joe and I left around 1pm and drove up to Tahoe together. We made a few stops to shop and run errands, and somehow it turned into an 8 hours drive! We were so floored. We scratched our heads wondering where the time went and how a few pit stops added up to doubling our ETA…nevertheless, we switched off driving and enjoyed the time road-tripping together.
At least we stopped for Chick-fil-A. 🙂
We made it to the cabin at 9pm and settled into our huge house with cozy woods-y decor. Everyone welcomed me with open arms which was so nice since I was the new person in the group! Joe and I didn’t stay up too long since we wanted to wake up early to hit the slopes, and we were in bed by 10:30pm.
Saturday: Warm, sunny, and best ski day yet + hot tub and cabin fun
Joe and I rented skis yesterday which made it easy to hit up the resort the next morning. We woke up early, drove a short 20 minutes to the resort, and by 8:30am we were one of the first ones on the lift 🙂
It was the PERFECT day to ski – high temps at 45 degrees, clear blue sky, soft snow that wasn’t slushy…it felt like spring! At 9,000 feet, the top of North Star had beautiful views of the neighboring mountains and Lake Tahoe. It was pretty mesmerizing to ski down with those views. ❤
We warmed up with an easy green and then hit up the blue slopes after. While I skiied and Joe snowboarded, it helped that we are the EXACT same level with the same risk tolerance (except Joe is 2x faster than me ha). We both loved the wide-open blues while staying away from the steeper drops. We both also had the same high energy level (a.k.a going up and down the slopes non-stop all day) and so we turned out to be perfect ski partners!
BBQ for lunch at the top of the mountain. We ate early to beat the lunch crowds which was such a good decision because lift lines were much shorter at noon and we had a second wind of energy after the yummy food!
The afternoon was such a dream…Joe and I both hit our stride and couldn’t help but feel our best selves being outside on a beautiful day.
Funny story, we developed a fool-proof system to stay together on the slopes since I was slower than Joe (I broke my hand skiing when I was 15 and have been a cautious skiier since then!). Joe would stop every few minutes, placing his snowboard upright and flashing its orange color. I would spot it and yell “wahoo!!”. He heard me, got up and continued down the mountain…then rinse and repeat. We called it our mating call 😉 ha!
We skiied all the way to the end of the day, success! Something about being out there with good weather and being with Joe made me feel so relaxed; we both had a lot of energy and didn’t even feel tired at the end of the day.
Some waffles and crepes as a much deserved treat.
In the evening, we went back to the cabin to meet up with the rest of the group (they all decided not to ski and stay at the cabin for the day). We hung out in the hot tub and devoured a few bottles of wine, catching up on our days and thawing away. Everyone was super open and willing to get to know me which I appreciated as the newbie of the group! We then sat down for a family-style dinner and played some games before Joe and I called it a night at 9:30pm (the tiredness definitely hit after we got home!).
Sunday: Blizzard to sun + second day skiing
The next day, we slept in and had breakfast with the crew before checking out of our cabin and heading to the slopes for day 2. This time around it was much colder and a blizzard on the mountain! The morning was a bit rough as the storm made it very low vis and the wind almost blew us off the mountain.
That was a good excuse for Joe and I to have some hot chocolate indoors. Does anyone else fill the whip cream all the way up the cup?
By late morning, the storm cleared up and we were left with the beautiful sunny vibes as the day before, just 15 degrees colder and with icy slopes. Joe and I skiied our hearts out and before we knew it, it was the end of the day again. We couldn’t believe it! Time was such a weird thing this weekend. We had so much fun and were running on adrenaline that it felt much quicker than a full day.
Joe is a talented videographer and caught some cool action shots of our trip. Check out this video he whipped together!
After saying goodbye to North Star we headed back to SF. Luckily this time it only took us 4 hours…Tahoe is so unpredictable.
On our car ride back, Joe and I were both over the moon about the weekend. We felt so refreshed and got our adventure fix. We were also so happy to have another activity to do together – on top of surfing, hiking, taking walks, and all the outdoorsy things we love to do. I never thought I would get so lucky to have a partner thats connects with the outdoors with such passion – it really does bring us closer and makes everything more fun. 🙂
Going into the week, I feel so grateful to have had this getaway. Leaving SF and spending time outdoors is always a reminder that there is SO much more to life than the narrow things we experience at work and everyday life. I really needed that refresh.