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Zimride Reimagines Tahoe Travel

As ski season heats up, Zimride partners with all major resorts and bus operators to a make a one-stop shop for fun, affordable and sustainable Tahoe travel.

zimride-logo-150Zimride, the largest online ride-sharing service in North America, announced it has established partnerships with all major Lake Tahoe ski resorts and two connecting bus services, making traveling to the Bay Area’s hottest winter tourist destination more simple and economical than ever before.

2564840233_5e40a50f47Tahoe travelers choosing to rideshare with Zimride will be entered to win free gas.  Additionally, for the first time Zimride has extended its rideshare offerings to include bus options as well.  Bay Area Ski Bus and Quality Assurance Travel have partnered with Zimride to sell tickets through the Zimride.com website, making the company a one-stop shop for Bay Area residents looking to find less expensive and more social rides to Tahoe.

“We’re not just providing an alternative to Tahoe travel, we’re reinventing it,” says John Zimmer, co-founder and COO of Zimride. “There’s huge demand for social, sustainable and affordable travel, and this week our users have posted over 1,000 seats available for purchase along our Tahoe route.  That’s the equivalent of four airline flights and we’re just getting started.  The unprecedented collaboration from the major resorts and bus operators demonstrates the need for Zimride as a new form of transportation.”

If just 10 percent of Tahoe travelers choose to travel with 2 additional people this season, Zimride estimates it would take 60,000 cars off the rode, save $12 million in vehicle operating costs and eliminate 18.6 million lbs of carbon dioxide from being emitted.

To be a driver or passenger along the Zimride Tahoe route simply go to: www.zimride.com

About Zimride:

Zimride, the largest online social rideshare community in North America, is building a marketplace for drivers to sell empty seats in their car by matching them with passengers traveling along the same route. In addition to public routes like San Francisco to Los Angeles, Zimride has implemented networks for over 120 of the nation’s leading universities and companies including Stanford, UCLA, University of Michigan, Facebook and Jet Blue.

Zimride makes sharing rides for drivers and passengers fun, easy and social. It’s a new spin on ridesharing, using social networks to enable real connections. In seconds you can set up a profile, see and book a ride in your area, or post a ride of your own. With Zimride profiles, you can view photos, music and radio preferences to ensure an enjoyable ride.

Zimride proves that “life is better when you share the ride”

Get started at: www.zimride.com

7 Reasons Visitors are Rushing to Visit Reno Tahoe’s Outdoors BEFORE a Snowstorm Hits

We’ve all heard it… Pray For Snow, Pray for Snow, Pray For Snow. And we’ll be the first ones to admit some snow would be nice (hence our Snow Dance Competition where we’re giving away a 2-Night Ski Vacation to the best snow dance in order to increase the frequency of snow… Mother Nature, are you watching?), but we must share the numerous upsides for a delayed ski season that have been compelling visitors to come before snow coats our mountains for the remainder of winter. 

2350526924_309d26f1ce[1]Last weekend a visitor told us they skied, mountain biked and golfed in the same day – that’s pretty awesome. 

1.       Learn to ski. Let’s face it, if you’re a first-timer, you aren’t going to be dropping 10-foot lips that require a snow pillow for landing, and you aren’t skiing in waist deep powder through the trees. The freshly groomed runs paired with endless blue skies create the perfect atmosphere for a relaxing day on the slopes.  Plus, January is National Learn to Ski Month so resorts are offering massive discounts to first-timers!

2.       Golf. Our courses pride themselves on being open all year long, so hit them up! We have 50 within 90 minutes of downtown Reno, most of which are inside 15 minutes.

3.       Hike. It’s a rare occasion that our trails are hikeable this time of year without strapping on snowshoes.  See what’s usually hiding underneath all that snow!

4.       Rock climb. Climbers know their grips are easier to hold when it’s cold out. So what are you waiting for?

6033352153_1136b13bee[1]5.       Mountain bike. The trail conditions are excellent right now, so grab a friend and escape into the towering pines in the Sierra Mountains. 

6.       Ice skate. Enjoy this chilly wintertime activity, without the chill.

7.       Perfect road conditions. No moisture, no snow, no ice, no sliding. It’s faster and easier than ever to get here!

The Real Tahoe Experience

By Guest Blogger,
Logan Baker

Lake Tahoe is one of the most picturesque places in America. In the summer, the sun rises over the calm lake and creates the perfect setting for a dip in the cool water or an exciting Jet Ski adventure. In the winter however, the lake and the Tahoe National Forest take on a serene and peaceful quality that you must see to believe. Whether you’re traveling by car or air charter, once you get to Reno, Tahoe or one of the surrounding areas, you need to stop by the lake. To really get the full Tahoe experience, you should consider taking a trip through the forest and around the lake on a horse-drawn sleigh or a sled led by a team of Huskies.

2358411405_70cd3cfa8a_zDottie Dennis has been carving trails though the Hope Valley, about half an hour south of the lake, for more than 30 years. She and her team of dogs are familiar with every twist and turn of the valley has remained largely untouched over the last 160 years. If you’ve ever wanted to vacation in the Alaskan wilderness but weren’t willing to travel so far, the Hope Valley is probably the most Alaskan landscape south of the Canadian border. Dennis’ Husky Express is $240 for a 375 lb. weight limit and box lunches can be provided for an extra $10 per person.

Borges Family Sleigh Rides offer excursions around the lake and through the forest on a variety of old-fashioned sleighs. The sleighs are entirely handmade by the Borges family and are pulled by two blonde Belgian draft horses. The trip takes travelers all over the beautiful snow-covered landscape and will conclude at the top of a scenic lookout over Lake Tahoe. Whether you’re bringing the whole family or just that special someone, a Borges Family sleigh trip might be the perfect thing to spice up your vacation. The trip costs $20 for adults and $10 for kids under 11.

If you’re vacationing in Reno or one of the surrounding areas, make it a point to head to Lake Tahoe. The lake takes on a spectral kind of beauty in the winter that is simply unparalleled.

Nevada Magazine: Reno-Tahoe Territory Special Edition

The newest issue of Nevada Magazine features the one and only, Reno Tahoe! We couldn’t help but share these breath-taking images and well written articles on our favorite destination. Features in the magazine include the area’s top ski resorts (including the largest ski resort in the US!), the Black Rock Desert beyond Burning Man (their photos will wow you), lakes, parks, towns, venues…. everything you’d want to know!

Want your own copy? Take advantage of Groupon’s 50% off deal through 10/22! http://www.groupon.com/deals/nevada-magazine-2 .

For all those who simply want to read the articles without flipping through the virtual magazine, you can check them out here http://www.nevadamagazine.com/issues/.

10 BEST DOG-FRIENDLY PROPERTIES IN NORTH LAKE TAHOE

2350573516_be59b124ecNo need to leave man’s best friend in a kennel or doggy day care when visiting Tahoe! Check out these 10 resorts that allow Fido to join you on your next vacation!

1. Tahoe Moon Properties, based in Tahoe City, offers more than 50 dog-friendly rentals from small cozy cabins to ski-in condos. Properties are equipped with dog baskets that include dog tags with rental home information, dog towels, sheets for covering beds and furniture, a sticky roller for hair removal, dog biscuits and a poop scoop and bags. Tahoe Moon charges a fee of $40/dog that covers additional cleaning.

2. On the water in Tahoe Vista is the Holiday House with its six-lakefront suites providing panoramic views of Lake Tahoe. The owner “welcomes pets to enjoy our piece of Heaven” and the property is centrally located to all things Tahoe, including beaches and restaurants. Don’t be surprised to see a German shepherd, named Sierra, out on the water on a stand up paddleboard with the property’s owner. There is a $30 flat fee for dogs for up to three days, and a $10/night for extended stays.

3. Located on the West Shore, Tahoma Meadows B&B Cottages is a winner of the Golden Bone Award for exceptional service from DogFriendly.com. Guests stay in charming red cottages, reminiscent of Lake Tahoe 50 years ago, but with all the amenities that guests expect today. The owners at Tahoma Meadows will also post your dog pictures from Tahoe on their website. A good resource in their Pet Information webpage, titled “Adventures with Your Dog at Tahoe,” which includes places – from beaches to hiking and cross country skiing – to enjoy with your pet. Fees are $20/night per dog.

4. Lake Tahoe’s Tahoma Lodge, also located on the West Shore in Tahoma, is a historic, family-owned property with one and two-bedroom cabins that are geared for families. Nearby Sugar Pine Point State Park, which offers spectacular views of Lake Tahoe and is home to the notable Hellman-Ehrman Mansion, is perfect for morning jaunts as dogs are invited on the paved trails on leash. Dogs are $10/night.

2359284934_c9bab284bf5. PlumpJack Squaw Valley Inn in Olympic Valley, home to Squaw Valley USA, pampers pets with comfy beds, doggie treats, bowls for food and water, a customized PlumpJack guest ID tag, as well as dog-friendly rooms located on the first floor for easy in and out. A $150 fee per room is assessed when you bring your four legged. Nearby Shirley Canyon is a must hike for dog owners, especially with its many waterfalls that encourages Fido to get wet. And, don’t miss one of the newest additions to the Village at Squaw Valley – Squaw Dogs is a shop featuring food, supplements, life vests, toys, leashes and harnesses that will keep your dog healthy and active for all your adventures.

6. Decorated with wildlife, nature-themed décor and renovated in 2004 to maintain its classic Tahoe charm, Mother Nature’s Inn in the heart of Tahoe City offers dog-friendly rooms that are also budget friendly. The property is also centrally located, and guests are literally able to walk everywhere, including to coffee shops, chic clothing boutiques and restaurants.

7. Located mid-mountain at Northstar Resort, the swanky Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe also welcomes pets at their five-star luxurious resort. Owners will also enjoy the ambience that includes rooms with in-room fireplaces, floor-to-ceiling windows, private walkout balconies and views of Martis Valley. Pet fees are $125 (non-refundable).

8. In Incline Village, the lakeside and equally well-appointed AAA Four-Diamond Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe Resort, Spa & Casino will also take your pooch, but they must be 25 pounds or lighter. Pets to this stunning locale are charged $50/night.

9. Nestled on two acres of pine trees in Tahoe Vista, The Rustic Cottages consists of Old Tahoe-style cottages, with many that are dog friendly. Owners will enjoy the property’s history as it was originally the sawmill and labor camp of the Brockway Lumber Company and was converted to vacation cottages in 1925. Pets are $20/night.

10. Baxter Baird, the owner’s adorable border collie, just may be your first greeter at the Cedar House Sport Hotel in Truckee; he’s also prominently displayed in the hotel’s advertisements. The property offers rooms that are an eclectic mix of contemporary design, functionality with an organic edge geared for relaxed comfort. Dogs are welcomed with special treats, dog beds and bowls. The dog-loving staff is also a great resource in providing guests with preferred dog venues throughout the area.2358794604_dc303da319_z

For more information about North Lake Tahoe dog-friendly properties and events geared for dogs, including Peaks & Paws, a dog celebration every August, head to www.GoTahoeNorth.com. And, for the best bargains, check out the website’s Cool Deals, which is updated daily and includes savings on lodging and activities.

ALL ABOARD THE 6TH ANNUAL VIRGINIA CITY/CARSON CITY RAILFEST

rail1rail2rail3Experience the history of the Virginia & Truckee Railroad at the 6th annual Virginia City/Carson City Railfest on Saturday August 13 and Sunday August 14. Step into the shoes of our yesteryears and celebrate by riding the historic rails on a Stream Train from Carson City to Virginia City and back. Train rides are available all weekend and are a great experience for the whole family.

On Saturday, pose for a picture with legendary western characters at the Virginia City Living Legends Photo Op in the Delta Saloon parking lot. After you have your memorable picture taken, stop by the F street Train Depot to experience how the American Civil War helped shape the country we live in today at the Battle Born Civil War Reenactors Educational Booth. For adults 21 and over, escape the Comstock and relax on a romantic full moon evening train on the Moon Over the Comstock V & T Ride. This tranquil journey includes a light box dinner and a glass of wine in a souvenir Railfest wine glass.

Head over to the Nevada State Railroad Museum on Sunday to see and learn all about the trains that traveled along the V & T Railroad, as well as other locomotives and cars made famous in movies and on television.

For overnight accommodations in Virginia City and more information on this and other events happening in Virginia City, log on to www.VisitVirginiaCityNV.com or call the Virginia City Visitor Center at (775) 847-4FUN (4386) or (800) 718-SLVR (7587).

FIVE FUN WAYS TO DISCOVER RENO

For some, Reno, Nevada is known for the same vibrant nightlife and gambling outlets as Las Vegas – but on a smaller and more intimate scale. Obvious tourist attractions include shopping, restaurants, singers, comedians and magic shows. But beyond the slot machines and flashing lights, there is a plethora of family-fun activities available.

Go just a short distance out of town though and you will find a treasure trove of non-gambling alternatives that are great for all ages. Here are five family-friendly activities you may want to consider for your next vacation to Reno, Nevada.

Lake Activitieslake tahoe

Anglers prize the Reno area for some of the best fly-fishing territory around. You can visit one of the many tackle shops in the area for maps of private and public lakes and river access areas. If you are interested in having a true fisherman’s experience, consider taking a class or attending one of the fly tying clinics and tie your own. There is nothing like catching that two-pound trout on a bumblebee you created with your own two hands.

Only 40 miles from Reno is famous Lake Tahoe, which offers spectacular views, clear mountain air and ample fishing holes for privacy or group activities. Guides are available, or you can pack a picnic basket, quilt and fishing gear and head off on your own for an adventurous day on the water. If you have always wanted “to land that BIG one,” consider visiting Pyramid Lake. This lake proudly boasts they have the largest Cutthroat Trout.

Whether you choose Pyramid Lake, Truckee River, Lake Tahoe or one of the other streams, lakes and rivers near Reno, prepare yourself for a day filled with awesome scenery and relaxing outdoor fun.

Hiking and Trailsclimbing

Many people think you have to go to Lake Tahoe to enjoy hiking trails that offer hikers challenging terrain. Not true! There are numerous trails in Reno parks and just on the outskirts of the city.  Hikers and trail watchers can find easy, moderate and challenging trails to test their skills and that will suit a variety of levels of physical fitness. You will find short trails that start at about 600 feet and have a gentle slope and more challenging trails that test your endurance.

About eight miles out of town in the gorgeous Sierra Mountains that surround Reno, Nevada, you will find the Tahoe Rim Trail in Galena Regional Park. This trail offers a loop that is just over 9 miles of moderate to mostly steep climbing. Hikers can expect to see desert terrain covered with sage, pine, juniper bushes and the occasional waterfall. Bring lots of film or extra chips for the camera. The views are breathtaking. And remember to pack plenty of water and a few energy bars or a lunch.

Golfgolf

If golf is your game–Reno, Nevada is your destination. There are over 50 golf courses within 90 miles of Reno proper. The PGA stops in Reno for the Reno-Tahoe Open, so you know the greens are great. No matter what your level of expertise, you will be able to find a course to fit your skill. Private lessons are available at most of the courses through resident pros and through guest pass arrangements. Since the high altitude gives golfers a natural advantage, you can expect to hit the ball further with every stroke. Get ready to play the lowest score of your life. If you’re a family with younger kids that aren’t ready for the big green yet, check out the many mini-golf options in the area.

Explore the Pastmuseum

For a relaxing day with some educational benefits, consider visiting one of the numerous museums in Reno. You can find museums dedicated to a variety of topics. An automobile museum, a museum dedicated to Disney and many others call Reno home. The Wilbur D. May museum is an adventure the entire family can enjoy. The artifacts and collectibles gleaned from years of traveling the world offer an exciting, eclectic blend. The indoor waterfall you’ll find there is always a big hit with kids and adults alike. Remember to check days and hours the museum is opened before planning your day. Some museums have limited hours.

Read, Paint, Write

Many artists enjoy the inspiration they absorb from the desert climate and surrounding rivers and mountains. Writers claim to feel the spirit of the nomadic American Indians. Artist carrying pallet and canvas attempt to capture the delicate yellow flower of the desert cactus in the early morning. Students from the college can be seen relaxing near the river as they search for answers to questions posed by Aristotle.

Visiting Reno is an opportunity to enjoy nature with your family, while having fun and learning, too. Enjoy.

This post was written by freelance writer Martha Keagan who is a full time mother, writer and part time real estate agent. Keagan has assisted hundreds of college students find housing and apartments in Reno for years. Reno is a great city, if you are looking to visit or even relocate to Reno, find a short term apartment to stay in before you decide to purchase a house.

FREE GUIDED HIKES THROUGH TAHOE’S BACKCOUNTRY

WildflowerMeadow (2)Mice_Meadows (2)Desolation 123 (2)Our late snow melt is providing impeccable hiking conditions all summer! Reno Tahoe has the perfect combo: spring’s rolling green hills with late blossoming flowers and summer’s warm weather.

This July, join the Tahoe Rim Trail Association for FREE guided hikes every week. There are hikes for all abilities so anyone can discover this fun and easy way to exercise, socialize and visit beautiful vistas during the summer months in the Tahoe Basin.

Saturday, July 9 – Grandma, Grandpa & Me Hikes

10am, at the Tahoe Meadows Trailhead

10am, at the Big Meadows Trailhead

Happening at two locations due to popular demand, kids will learn about neighboring animals, their habitat and wilderness safety on this unforgettable adventure.

Saturday, July 9 – Castle Rock

8am, at the Kingsbury Grade North Trailhead

Hike the awe-inspiring Tahoe Rim Trail over rolling terrain with panoramic views of Lake Tahoe along the way to Castle Rock.

Saturday, July 16 – Dardanelles Lake

8am, at the Big Meadows Trailhead

Passing through shallow creeks, strikingly beautiful cliffs and the Big Meadow, you’ll reach the Dardanelles Lakes.

Saturday, July 23 – Echo Lakes

8am, at Echo Summit North Trailhead

This 10.6 mile trek will pass spectacular granite formations, allowing you to enjoy the deep blue surface of Lower and Upper Echo Lakes.

Sunday, July 24 – Birds, Views and Falls

7am, at the Mount Rose Trailhead

Hike from the Mount Rose Trailhead to Galena Falls to enjoy the birds and soak in great views before arriving at Galena Falls and the surrounding alpine meadows. Possible avian participants are Green-tailed Towhee, Clark’s Nutcracker, Mountain Bluebird and MacGillivray’s Warbler.

Saturday, July 30 – Barker Pass

8am, at the Barker Pass Trailhead

Not only will you enjoy some great vistas and wildflowers on this hike, but you will also learn how TRTA Trail Builders build and maintain this incredible trail. Don’t worry, this is a “hands-off” trail building lesson.

THREE PEAKS IN THREE WEEKS

Friday, July 15 – Mt. Rose

7am, at the Mt. Rose Parking Plaza and Trailhead

Friday, July 22 – Freel Peak

6:30am, at the Big Meadows Trailhead

Friday, July 29 – Mt. Tallac

7am, at the Glenn Alpine Trailhead.

FULL MOON HIKES – TRTA Members Only

Friday, July 15

7:30pm, at the Tahoe Meadows Trailhead

Not a member of the TRTA? Join! Afterwards, enjoy a three mile moonlit tromp through the Tahoe Meadows up to the Tahoe Basin ridge. Expect casually paced hikes for all ages, while slowing down to enjoy the flora and fauna and to explore with your nighttime senses.

You must register in advance for these summer hikes. Online registration is now required for all TRTA programs and can be completed on the TRTA website at www.tahoerimtrail.org. For more information call 775-298-0012 or email Tom at programs@tahoerimtrail.org.

For more Lake Tahoe hiking trails click here.

HAPPY HIKING!

Renowned Yosemite-area Climber to Speak at Patagonia in Reno, Nevada

Rock Climbing SL

Mountaineer, climber, skier, and award-winning author Doug Robinson will speak in Reno at a special benefit for the Reno-based advocacy group, Snowlands Network. The lecture and slideshow, “Wild in the Sierra: Backcountry Skiing the Highest Sierra,” which will feature Robinson’s reflections about his 50 years of climbing and skiing throughout the Sierra, will take place at the Patagonia Outlet in Reno, Nev. on March 10.

Robinson, the recipient of the 2010 American Alpine Club Literary Award, has given voice to the thoughts and concerns of the climbing community ever since he articulated his ideas about “clean climbing” in the early 1970’s, arguing that rock climbers should climb in a way that left no trace of their ascents. Robinson’s writing has led some to call him the “bard of the climbing community;” he has been referred to as a “modern day John Muir” because of the poetic way in which he combines adventure and observations about the natural environment. His climbing video, “Moving Over Stone,” was a best seller, and has taught several generations of climbers how to take to rock and mountains.

The first President of the American Mountain Guides Association, Robinson was also a pioneer of Sierra ski touring, having made numerous traverses across the Range, including a 1970 traverse of the John Muir Trail. He was also instrumental in introducing modern ice climbing to the United States, in first ascents in the Sierra and beyond.

“Doug’s pure philosophy of taking to wilderness is emblematic of what we represent as advocates of human-powered winter travel in the Sierra,” says Gail Ferrell, President of Snowlands Network.

 Robinson will speak on Thur., Mar. 10 at the Patagonia Service Center, at 8550 White Fir Street, in Reno. Tickets are available on the Snowlands website, www.snowlands.org, and at the event if still available. Prices are $20 in advance for Snowlands Network members, $25 in advance for non-members, and $30 at the door for everyone. The doors will open and the silent auction will begin at 6:30 p.m.

About Snowlands Network : Snowlands Network is the only 501c3 organization in California and Nevada dedicated to representing the needs of backcountry skiers, snowshoers, snowboarders and other outdoors people who value the physical and spiritual joys of winter and winter travel using their own muscle power. Their goal is to promote safety and serenity on every winter adventure.

- Written by: Michelle Montoya

Video: Mountain bike fun on Lake Tahoe’s Flume Trail

One of the great outdoor diversions in Reno Tahoe is mountain biking. From the hills of Peavine in Reno, to the fabulous Tahoe Rim Trail that circles “Big Blue,” there are hundreds of miles of single track that appeals to everyone from beginners to seasoned pros. One of the region’s most famous routes is the Flume Trail, connecting Spooner summit at Lake Tahoe’s South Shore to the Rim Trail.

The ride takes cyclists up a steep climb past Marlette Lake at the crest and then on a lengthy tour high above Tahoe on a moderate singletrack route. Overall, the trail offers boundless scenery without requiring too much exertion – perfect for moderately skilled, moderately fit riders. Here is a good snapshot (via Mike Henderson and iamindisposed.com) of what to expect on Lake Tahoe’s Flume Trail ride: