Private Ski Guiding

1 Day in Lake Tahoe, CA / (Skill level: Any)

Price per person

$179 Based on a group of 5 skiers

About this trip

Private ski guiding allows you to customize your day for up to 5 skiers and riders. Most interested in backcountry education? Or are you looking to ski fresh tracks on steep slopes all day? Give us a call to start planning your dream ski adventure in Lake Tahoe.  

  • Full-Day Rates:
  • Single: $495
  • Group of 2: $298/person
  • Group of 3: $232/person
  • Group of 4: $199/person
  • Group of 5: $179/person
  • Please contact the office to book groups of 5 or more

Overview

  • skill level

    Any

  • Duration

    1 Day

Privately guided days consist of just you, your hand picked group, and your guide. With this arrangement, you’re able to call the shots helping to shape the day with your guide as you see fit. The goals and outcome of a day out with our guides is customized to your group.

  • Want to rip as many laps as you can? We can put the learning aside and get right to it.
  • Want to find the rarely skied nooks and crannies with the best cold pow? Our guides know the area better than anyone, and Alpenglow’s exclusive lift access at Squaw Valley gives us the ability to find the best conditions out there.
  • Want to build your backcountry skills? Our guides love to teach, and can focus your day on uphill skills, avalanche safety skills and more, all while skiing and riding in the backcountry.

Location

Your day out will take place somewhere on the North Shore of Lake Tahoe, within the Tahoe National Forest. We have many trailhead options at our disposal and with your input, your guide will pick the location with the best conditions for the day. Alpenglow operates in partnership with the Tahoe National Forest and Squaw Valley | Alpine Meadows.

What to Expect

Depending on fitness level, technical ability and daily conditions skiers and riders can expect to get multiple laps of fresh tracks in the backcountry. Terrain varies from wide open bowls and widely spaced trees to steep, technical lines that will challenge even the most seasoned skier.

Each morning starts off with a safety meeting with your guide and a gear check to make sure everyone has what they need for the day. Depending on the day’s conditions and weather, your guide will make the decision on which trailhead you’ll be using for the day.

You should expect to hike through beautiful terrain for a couple hours at a time. During downhill portions you’ll be greeted with the conditions of the day and should be prepared to ski or ride in variable snow conditions ranging from cold powder to firm but carveable chalk snow.

Who Can Participate

Intermediate and Advanced skiers or riders who have anywhere between no experience to years worth of days in the backcountry. Skiers and riders must be competent in a variety of terrain and snow conditions. Skiers and riders must be able to link turns on ungroomed runs while maintaining control. This is comparable to skiing ungroomed black diamond terrain confidently.

Skiers or riders 12-16 years old can join us with a parent. 16 years and over are able to join without accompaniment.

Rentals

A complete backcountry touring setup is required, and we can rent it all to you for a small cost. We rent beacons, probes, shovels, touring skis, touring boots and splitboards.

Preparation

  • FITNESS

    Excellent physical fitness is required. Skiers must be able to hike for many hours at a time while carrying a pack.

  • TECHNICAL EXPERIENCE

    Skiers must be competent resort skiers able to link turns in a variety of terrain and snow conditions.

    • You tell us! — What are your goals?

      You tell us what your goals are and we'll build the ski experience that you'll never forget.

      • Ski/Splitboard Equipment

      • Skis w/ Touring Bindings

        A lightweight touring ski with touring bindings. Our guides suggest something between 95mm and 110mm underfoot. Keep in mind that extremely lightweight boards are great on the uphill, but can prove challenging in variable conditions. Recommended Skis: Blizzard Zero G 105 Skis Recommended Bindings: Dynafit Speed Radical

      • Ski Touring Boots

        These need to be a touring specific boot with walk mode, and a rubber sole. Typically sized a bit larger than your regular alpine boot, and light weight is a huge plus. Be sure to try many pairs on to find the right fit; it can make or break a day in the mountains! Recommended: Tecnica Zero G Tour Pro or Zero G Tour Scout

      • Splitboard

        A splitboard that you are comfortable riding in a variety of conditions. Recommended: Jones Solution Splitboard

      • Snowboard Boots

        The same boots you wear at the resort are great for your splitboard. Be sure they're comfortable, backcountry touring means long days in your boots! Recommended: Burton Tourist Snowboard Boots

      • Splitboard Bindings

        Splitboard bindings are required for uphill travel. Be sure to adjust the straps to your boots before using. Recommended: Spark R&D Arc Bindings

      • Skins

        Many options are available, and are often comparable. Most important is to ensure your skins are trimmed properly for the ski you will be touring with. Skins with a secure tail clip are preferred. Recommended for Skis: Black Diamond Ascension Nylon STS Recommended for Splitboards: Black Diamond Ascension Splitboard STS

      • Ski/Splitboard Poles

        Adjustable ski poles with powder baskets. Recommended: Black Diamond Expedition 2 or Expedition 3 Poles

      • Backpack 35-45 Liters

        Internal frame pack that is between 35 and 45 liters. Either purchase a matching pack cover, or use garbage bags as liners to protect from precipitation. Make sure the pack is fitted to YOUR body. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Alchemist 40 Pack, or Black Diamond Mission 35 Pack

      • Shovel

        A lightweight metal avalanche rescue shovel. Extendable handle is recommended. Recommended: Black Diamond Transfer 3 Shovel

      • Probe

        A strong, lightweight avalanche probe, 260-300cm. Recommended: Black Diamond QuickDraw Tour Probe 280

      • Avalanche Transceiver

        A digital transceiver that is simple to use or that you are extremely comfortable using. Recommended: Black Diamond Recon BT Avalanche Beacon

      • Apparel

      • Hard Shell Jacket

        A lightweight, waterproof and breathable jacket WITH A HOOD that can withstand extreme weather conditions. Make sure you have pit-zips and if you are using an old jacket, re-waterproof it. Recommended: Eddie Bauer BC Freshline Jacket

      • Hard Shell Pants

        Your waterproof bottom layer for extreme weather days. Make sure you have water-resistant zippers, crampon patches + good pockets. Recommended: Black Diamond Sharp End Pants

      • Synthetic Top

        A simple, lightweight synthetic jacket. This item is good for layering systems and the Primaloft keeps you warm when wet. Recommended: Eddie Bauer IgniteLite Stretch Reversible

      • Lightweight Top

        Ultra-light base layer that effectively wicks moisture away from your body and is breathable. Quick-dry is important as well. One light colored shirt is recommended for extremely sunny days. The new wool blends are also an option. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Resolution Short-Sleeve T-Shirt

      • Base Layer Bottoms

        Fitted and quick drying. This piece will be a base-layer that will get you through a wide range of temperatures. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Midweight FreeDry Merino Hybrid Baselayer Pants

      • Long Sleeve Base Layer

        A poly-pro mid-layer that you will never take off. Fitted, light- weight and quick drying. Make sure it is long enough to tuck-in and we recommend zipper collars for more ventilation. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Resolution IR 1/4 Zip

      • Warm Layer

        A polarguard or fleece jacket. This is your mid layer that will be worn over your baselayer most of the trip. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Cloud Layer Pro 1/4 Zip or Patagonia R1 Jacket

      • Heavyweight Gloves

        These gloves should be full GORE-TEX®, with a removable fleece liner (so you can take the liner out and dry it at night). These gloves are used at higher altitude and are need to keep your hands dry, and warm. Over the cuff style is desired. Recommended: Black Diamond Guide Glove

      • Lightweight Gloves

        All-around gloves for mountaineering, backcountry skiing, and hiking. These gloves (and similar options) are warm, wind-resistant, durable and have a sure grip. You will rarely take these gloves off. They should be snug-fitting, and have some sort of reinforced palm. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Mountain Glove

      • Ski Socks

        Your everyday ski sock, good for ski tours and day hikes. NO COTTON. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Guide Pro Merino Wool Ski Socks

      • Accessories

      • Sunglasses

        Must have dark lenses. Minimal light should come in below, above, or around the sides of the lenses.“Wrap” style is best. Ventilation is important and a retainer strap is very useful (Chums or Croakies). Recommended: Revoi Guide II

      • Hat

        Bring your favorite baseball hat for shelter from the sun. No white under the brim - the reflection off of it from the sun is blinding. Recommended: Alpenglow 5-Panel

        $25.00
      • 1L Nalgene (2)

        Two 1 Liter Wide Mouth Nalgene bottles. Recommended: Nalgene 1 L wide mouth

      • Goggles

        These will be worn on stormy or windy days. Make sure you are getting a snug fit with lenses for bright sun. Ventilation and anti-fog features are desired. Recommended: Smith I/O

      • Beanie

        A comfortable, warm well-fitting hat that covers your ears. Make sure that one of your hats fits under a helmet. Recommended: Eddie Bauer First Ascent Beanie

      • Helmet

        Easily adjustable lightweight helmet that fits with hat and Balaclava. Make sure this is a climbing-specific helmet. *Climbing helmets are also available to rent at no charge from Alpenglow Expeditions on a first come, first serve basis. Recommended: Petzl Meteor Helmet

    • What is your cancellation policy?

    • I just booked a tour, what do I do now?

      You will receive a welcome email shortly with more information about your day. Please be sure to fill out our waivers, and let us know if you have any rental needs. Verify you have all your personal gear that you’ll need, and give us a call if you have questions about any aspect of your Alpenglow adventure.

    • What if I just want to join a group trip?

      No problem, just head back to our expedition page and select “ski” under activities. There you’ll see all of our available ski trips.

    • What sort of experience is required for this trip?

      Skiers must be confident on a variety of terrain, including black diamond-caliber descents. Prior ski touring experience is not required, although excellent physical fitness is important. If you can get down the mountain- we can get you up!

    • How much hiking will we do?

      The amount of hiking during the day varies largely on the size, pace, and motivation of the group. On a light day, you can expect about 1-2 hours of hiking, and on a larger day some groups may surpass 4 hours of hiking throughout the course of the day.

    • When & where do we meet?

      Location and timing vary depending on the conditions and objectives of the group.

    • What gear do I need to bring?

      In general, your gear for the day will be very similar to a day of skiing in the resort, but here are a few key pieces that are unique to the backcountry and crucial for the day –

      A hat and pair of sunglasses (These come in handy on the hike up)
      Sunscreen
      Water and snacks (Our guides recommend between 1-2L of water depending on your intake)
      Lighter, more breathable layer options than a typical resort layering system. An additional light pair of gloves is preferred for uphill travel
      Ski poles with powder baskets, or a pair of collapsable poles for splitboarding. (We have these available at no extra charge if you need them)
      A backpack, and any avalanche rescue gear you may own. (Our guides recommend packs around 20-30L)
      **Please give us a call if you have any questions about what to bring, or if your gear will be appropriate for the day.

    • I need to rent gear, what information should I provide in advance?

      We have an excellent selection of backcountry ski gear available to rent. We offer top of the line equipment from Blizzard Skis, Technica Boots, Jones Snowboards, and Black Diamond. Many of our guides use the same gear available in our demo fleet. If you have any gear or sizing questions, we would be more than happy to get you situated to ensure you get the most out of your day in the mountains.

      A/T Skis

      We can offer touring specific skis from Blizzard, a personal favorite for our mountain guides. We have skis available for both females and males. We have sizes available in 164cm,  171cm, 178cm, and 185cm.

      Splitboards

      We have Jones Splitboards available to rent in sizes 145cm, 152cm, 160cm, 161cm, 162cm, and 164cm) Please let us know your stance/binding angle preferences if you are planning to rent a splitboard setup.

      A/T Ski Boots

      Alpine touring ski boots from Technica Boots are available to rent. Sizes range from 23.5 to 29.5 in both genders.

      Avalanche Equipment

      Avalanche gear is mandatory for all peoples traveling in alpine terrain. If you do not already own gear, we offer a beacon, shovel, probe setup available to rent for $25/day.

    • I don’t have any avalanche gear- can I still sign up?

      Yes! Alpenglow rents beacons, probes and shovels for a small daily fee.

    • Is lunch included on this trip?

      Lunch is not included, we recommend bringing a sack lunch and plenty of water.

    • What safety standards do you have?

      At Alpenglow, we have only the highest standards of safety and guide qualifications. All of our local backcountry tours are led by AMGA trained/certified guides. Our guides assess the snow conditions and avalanche hazards every morning to mitigate risk, and are supervised by fully certified IFMGA guides.

Logan Talbott

co-owner / chief guide

Logan has been guiding professionally for over a decade in the disciplines of Rock, Alpine and Ski Mountaineering. When not out guiding, Logan spends time in the office helping the team with the day-to-day operations of the business. From one day ascents of El Capitan to big Alpine climbs in the Himalaya, from ski descents on Denali to backyard ski tours in Lake Tahoe, he can’t help but smile when out running around the hills. Logan is an AMGA/IFMGA mountain guide, an Avalanche course leader with AIARE, as well as a wilderness EMT. In addition to guiding, Logan has extensive experience in mountain rescue, having worked for rescue teams in both Yosemite and Denali National Parks, and volunteering locally for Tahoe Nordic SAR. When not out in the hills, he lives in Truckee, CA with his lovely wife Lynette and daughter Maggie.

Guide Certifications
  • AMGA - American Mountain Guide
  • IVBV IFMGA UIAGM - Mountain Guide

Tim Dobbins

With notable first descents in the Alps, Tim Dobbins represents Alpenglow’s cutting edge guiding philosophy providing only the best guides for every trip and expedition.

Growing up in Oregon, Tim started out skiing at the young age of 4 years old. Tim grew up ski racing for 9 years before he moved on to backcountry skiing in Aspen, Colorado. He spent 4 years working as ski patrol at Snowmass Ski Resort.

Tim moved to Chamonix in the mid-’90s where he spent 6 seasons skiing and climbing while studying French. Tim says that Chamonix is where he really started learning how to ski tour, rock climb, ice climb and eventually began skiing the steepest lines he could find.

Examples of those steep lines were the North-East face of Les Courtes, Couloir Barbey from Aiguille D’Argentiere, Couloir Couturier from L’Aiguille Verte, Couloir du Diable on Mont Blanc du Tacul, East face of the Matterhorn and many, many others.

Tim has spent the last 10 years guiding and instructing in rock, ice, alpine, and skiing. He is an AMGA/IFMGA mountain guide, and lives on Donner Lake in Truckee with his wife Gisele, sweet daughter Manue and son Matisse.

Guide Certifications
  • AMGA - American Mountain Guide
  • IVBV IFMGA UIAGM - Mountain Guide

Ali Agee

Ali grew up ski racing and competitive freestyle skiing in Lake Tahoe. It wasn’t until a backcountry skiing trip to the Eastern Sierra that Ali discovered her true passion for moving through the mountains, whether it be on skis or via long alpine rock routes.

Since then, she has skied and rock climbed in multiple venues including the Sierra Nevada, Cascades, Japan, and Canada.
Ali has experienced firsthand the transformative powers that guided trips can have on someone looking to break through comfort zone barriers. She is passionate about sharing similar soul-filling, life-changing experiences with others.

Ali is currently an AMGA apprentice Ski and apprentice Alpine Guide, Pro 1 Avalanche Professional, Wilderness First Responder, Type-Two Fun Seeker, and Via Ferrata Enthusiast. She also has a master’s degree in accounting and is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

Sam Kieckhefer

Operations Manager

 

Born and raised in Northern California, Sam began exploring the Sierra and developed a love for the mountains at a young age. A Squaw Alpine passholder for more than 20 years, Sam’s passion for the Tahoe area is infectious, and he’s excited to bring that passion to the bigger mountains of the world. In the summer, Sam jumps out of bed at the crack of dawn for pre-work waterskiing on Lake Tahoe and in the winter, he’s searching for fresh turns in the West Shore backcountry. Sam is always down for a new adventure, and loves being a part of your adventures too.

Rich Meyer

Rich has been guiding professionally for over twenty years.  His work has varied from single day backcountry ski tours in Tahoe, to ski expeditions from Alaska to Antarctica.  Rich has been lucky enough to guide, travel, ski, and summit peaks in places such as:  Canada, France, Italy, Switzerland, Ecuador, Argentina, Chile, Alaska, and Antarctica.  As well as scores of Mt. Shasta & Sierra Nevada summits. Promoting the human powered outdoor experience is a big part of Rich’s passion and work, both locally and nationally.  He feels strongly that protecting our natural environment and educating skiers and climbers about our winter wild places has to be a priority.

Jules Hanna

If you are looking for an AMGA Splitboard guide, Jules is your man. He has been guiding for 10 years and spends his winters in Tahoe and summers in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska.

Whether it’s a ski day or time to board, Jules enjoys the rewards that the backcountry experience provides. He is an AIARE course leader and has logged many adventures in mountains up and down the west coast learning about the avalanche phenomena. Jules is also an Ambassador Guide for Jones Snowboards.

In addition to guiding, Jules has worked as a climbing ranger at Mt Rainer and a mountaineer for the US Antarctic Program and has many stories to tell from his time on Search and Rescue in those locales.

Guide Certifications
  • AMGA Certified Ski Guide

Ben Mitchell

Ben has been in love with the mountains from a young age. He began hiking and skiing with his family and quickly decided he never wanted to stop. After finishing university in Portland, OR Ben moved back to Washington State and began guiding on Mt. Rainier and around the Cascades. For the next many years he followed the seasons, skiing, climbing and pursuing the art of human flight through out the world. He has made expeditions into both polar circles, skied first descents in Afghanistan and climbed throughout the Americas and Europe. When not looking forward to the next adventure he thoroughly enjoys roasting coffee, reading and taking his dog out for walks.

Ben is an IFMGA/AMGA mountain guide, Certified Level III Avalanche Professional, and Wilderness First Responder.

Guide Certifications
  • AMGA - American Mountain Guide
  • IVBV IFMGA UIAGM - Mountain Guide

Patrick English

Patrick started climbing on the steep sandstone of the South East. After a trip to the Sawtooths in Idaho, he was hooked. He left his job as a firefighter/medic and packed whatever fit into his Jeep to head west, finding his happy place in the Sierra Nevada. With a background as a technical rescue operator, big wall climbing came pretty naturally to Patrick. Now, hunting down classic alpine rock climbs and multipitching at Lovers Leap are where Patrick spends his summers. In winter, you’ll find him scoping out couloirs and alpine faces to carve up on his splitboard.

Patrick is an AMGA Apprentice Rock and Apprentice Ski Guide.

Will Sperry

After Will’s first ever outdoor rock climb in Slovenia, he was hooked and knew he wanted to pursue a profession in the Mountains. In the subsequent years he worked on honing his craft on rock and enjoyed the places and adventures climbing brought him. Will has traveled to many mountains all around the world since his first taste of climbing, but always seems to call the Sierra his favorite place on earth… so far.

Will has seen the transformative power of the mountains first hand and works to provide experiences to his clients that will challenge their comfort zone and their perception of possibility. Whether this comfort zone is going for a long hike, or spending 5 nights on the side of a mountain, the power of stepping out is undeniable and in Will’s point of view essential for a well lived life.

Will spends his summers guiding on Mt. Shasta, Tahoe, and the Sierra and when winter comes around you can find Will on his splitboard practicing shinrin-yoku in the trees and alpine zones of Lake tahoe and Japan. Will also considers himself a nerd for snow science and will be happy to explain temperature gradients and avalanche problem types to those ready to learn.

Will is currently an AMGA Apprentice Rock Guide and an Apprentice Ski Guide.

Ben Weaver

Ben comes to guiding after being a professional ski patroller for several years. Three of those seasons were spent working as part of the snow safety department at Mt. Hood Meadows.  Ben is now in his fourth winter season with Alpenglow Expeditions here in Squaw Valley.   He is a professional member of the AMGA, has his AIARE level 3 certification and is also an AIARE Course Leader. After successful completion of the Aspirant ski course/exam he is an AMGA Assistant ski guide and will be participating in the AMGA Alpine Guide Course later this spring.  Ben has spent three spring climbing seasons in Alaska volunteering with the National Park Service climbing rangers on Denali.   He is a Board Member of the Denali Rescue Volunteers organization and will be back on Denali this coming May.  He has skied in the Western US, Alaska, Canada, and two seasons in Chamonix & La Grave.   Ben has a Master’s Degree in Anesthesia and he works as a CRNA in the summer.  Ben lives here in the Tahoe area with his lovely wife Katie and their two dogs, Roscoe & Murdock.

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    Private Ski Guiding

Private Ski Guiding

Private ski guiding allows you to customize your day for up to 5 skiers and riders. Most interested in backcountry education? Or are you looking to ski fresh tracks on steep slopes all day? Give us a call to start planning your dream ski adventure in Lake Tahoe.