Squaw Valley & Alpine Meadows Ski Areas Merge

Tahoe_Super_PassAfter speculation and rumors throughout the Spring & Summer, Squaw Valley USA & Alpine Meadows have decided to merge.

This creates a mega resort at Lake Tahoe and I am sure will please some and displease others. So it goes in the games of big ski firms merging, buying and selling one another.

The numbers show that Squaw Meadows / Alpine Valley will have 46 lifts, which will enable skiers and snowboarder to access over 6,000 acres. This creates one of the largest ski areas in North America and can also rival any other area for the quality of diversified terrain as well.

Part of what makes this such an interesting combining of resorts, at least from a customer standpoint, is the perceived almost polar opposite attitudes in general of the resorts management style. On the North side of Whitewolf is big, bad, “because I said so” Squaw, with a tenuous relationship with even its own customers. On the Whitewolf side of the saddle, is the down home, bring your whole family, same as it ever was Alpine Meadows.

How this will affect the Lake Tahoe ski and snowboard landscape remains to be seen. Alpine Meadows currently has season pass reciprication at other Tahoe ski areas, Homewood and Kirkwood. For at least this season, these passes will continue to be valid, however, I can’t see the this going on beyond the 2011-12 Winter season.

Also, if you recall last Fall, Vail Associates, owners of Heavenly Ski Area in South Lake Tahoe, bought Northstar-at-Tahoe. This created a unique super pass for the North and South shores as they are both major ski areas. So maybe this was catalyst for Squaw Valley to try to remain at the top of in the Lake Tahoe region.

For more information, you can go to the Alpine Meadows homepage.