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Vacation Tips

Whether you plan to ski, mountain bike, golf or relax, the experience and enjoyment of your mountain vacation at Northstar California can be enhanced by proper planning. From what to pack, how to save time and money to how to prepare for high altitude, we hope our tips will make your vacation as hassle-free and enjoyable as possible.  


Winter Planning Tips

Make Advanced Reservations

Reserve rental equipment, adult lessons and lesson packages, children's lesson packages or child care online in advance to ensure availability and be more prepared for your visit!  Reservations need to be made 24 hours in advance.

» Reserve Lessons+Rentals Online

Utilize Drop Off Zone, Preferred Parking and Premium Parking.

Northstar offers a guest traffic drop-off zone for private vehicles, which helps to smooth out traffic flow and avoid congestion. Private vehicles can pull up to the Village and either take advantage of Northstar Resort’s Premium parking lot (limited operating days), or unload their passengers and all of their gear before they go park the car. We also offer Preferred Parking, located just steps to the Village and Gondola entrance, for guests shopping and dining in the Village at Northstar.

» Parking at Northstar

Arrive at the Rental Shop early for the Best Selection.

The rental shop opens at 7:30 a.m., so head there first to avoid the lines and get the best pick of equipment. You can reserve your equipment online to ensure availability and pick up your equipment the afternoon before you plan to ski or ride. 

» Reserve Rentals Online

Take advantage of Early Bird Private Lessons and Save.

Start the day off right with a private lesson, and then spend the rest of the day practicing what you learned. One-hour "Rise and Shine" private lessons are available from 8:30 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. daily. Other times are available for general private lessons. Reservations are recommended. Call the Adventure, Guiding + Learning Center at 530.562.3500 for details.

Consider a 3-Day or Weekly Private Locker Membership.

Northstar offers multiple convenient locations for storing small items, as well as multi-day and seasonal private locker options for guests seeking hassle-free convenience with special member-only benefits.

» Day Lockers » Private Lockers

Winter Packing Checklist

In preparation for your trip, ensure you have the right clothing and other accessories to be comfortable in the varying mountain temperatures we experience in the Lake Tahoe area and at Northstar. We know it can be easy to forget the little things. Here’s a checklist that we hope will help as you’re thinking about what to bring with you. 

» Download Winter Packing Checklist (.pdf) 

Prepare for arrival tips

Winterize your vehicle, understand your fitness level, eat well, sleep well, dress in layers!

» Pre-Arrival Tips

Once you arrive tips

Review tips for when you get to Northstar

» Arrival Tips

Year-Round Planning Tips

Save with Lodging Packages and Deals

Northstar offers a variety of pre-arranged packages that include activities, lodging and occasionally food & beverages, all for one low price. Our lodging packages offer quick, convenient one-stop vacation planning. 

» Vacation Packages + Lodging Deals

Take Advantage of the Northstar Recreation Center

All Northstar lodging guests (condominiums, hotel-style rooms and lofts, studios, and mountain homes) enjoy access for only $2 per person, per day to the recreation center. The recreation center features a junior Olympic-size outdoor heated swimming pool (summer only), a lap pool, a wading pool for small children, and three outdoor spas the entire family will enjoy. Children are entertained for hours in the game room that contains arcade games, ping pong tables, pool, and air hockey.

» Recreation Center

Eat-In / Groceries

Most Northstar lodging units come equipped with kitchens. A great way to save money and enjoy your peaceful mountain surroundings is to eat in. Earthly Delights artisan bakery and deli, located in the Village at Northstar, features quick, gourmet foods for breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as simple groceries, light sundries, grab-and-go items, and a beer and wine selection for those looking for convenience.

» Food + Dining options at Northstar


Looking to have a "dinner and a movie" night? The Village Cinemas in the Village at Northstar show popular Hollywood hits presented in ultra stereo or DTS, and offer comfortable seating and a full-service concession stand.

» The Village Cinemas

Take advantage of our complimentary Shuttle Service

Don’t worry about driving. Northstar Transportation offers convenient on-site shuttle service to lodging guests and self-park customers.

» On-Site Transportation

High Altitude Tips

As you ascend to higher altitudes, atmospheric pressure decreases. It is also colder, drier and the ultraviolet rays from the sun are stronger. Each of these changes may have effects on your body, most commonly occurring above 8000 feet. Northstar village elevation is 6,300' and the summit is 8,600'.

Avoid Altitude Illness

  • Stay hydrated - Drink 10-16 ounces of fluid before beginning the day's activities, and continue replenishing throughout the day.
  • Modify caffeine and alcohol intake.
  • Decrease salt intake.
  • Eat high carbohydrate, low fat meals.
  • Get a good nights rest.
  • Modify exertion on your first day.

Prevent Sunburn 

  • Apply sunscreen (SPF 15-30) at least 1/2 hour prior to hitting the mountain and re-apply every two to three hours.
  • Always wear sun glasses or goggles.

Dress properly

  • Dress in layers.
  • Bring extra clothes for sudden temperature changes.


Summer Planning Tips

Bring the Entire Family to Northstar for a Golf Getaway.

While mom and dad enjoy 18-holes, the kids can have a blast learning to golf with kids their age. Northstar Resort has teen and children's two-day golf clinics for kids ages six to 16, offered July through August.

» Golf Lessons + Clinics

Take Advantage of Early and Late Season Deals.

Although summer lodging rates are substantially lower than winter rates, you can save even more money by visiting Northstar in the spring and fall shoulder seasons. Tahoe weather is perfect in May and September and lodging packages are often offered on weekends. 

Summer Packing Checklist

In preparation for your trip, ensure you have the right clothing and other accessories to be comfortable in the varying mountain temperatures we experience in the Lake Tahoe area and at Northstar. We know it can be easy to forget the little things. Here’s a checklist that we hope will help as you’re thinking about what to bring with you. 

» Download Summer Packing Checklist (.pdf) 


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