Dog-Friendly Lifts at Northstar

Dog-Friendly Lifts at Northstar

5001 Northstar Dr.
Truckee, California 96161
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Local Phone: (800) 466-6784

Just $13 for adults, $6 for kids 5-12 (ages 4 and younger ride free) buys a day's worth of scenic lift rides that Fido and season pass-holders can enjoy for free.

The experience starts on the Big Springs Gondola, whose enclosed cabins run to the mid-mountain Lodge at Big Springs. From there, DogTrekkers can hop aboard a gondola on the Zephyr Express for a ride to the upper ridge-lines and sweeping views of Lake Tahoe and the snow-crusted Sierra.

Northstar's lifts operate in summer primarily to service the resort's thriving mountain bike park.

Because cyclists and dogs don't mix, foot travelers should be sure to keep their charges securely leashed in the vicinity of the bike park. A popular six-mile loop, mostly on fire roads, leads safely away from the two-wheel crowd to connect with the 165-mile Tahoe Rim Trail and a pretty alpine lake perfect for a dip and a picnic.

Northstar's scenic lift rides are available Fridays-Sundays from June into September, weather permitting, and daily during the mid-summer high season.

Buy tickets at the Tickets and Season Pass Office or Plaza Bike Rental Shop in the base-area village. A bonus: novice hikers and their four-legged companions can enjoy free guided hikes along the easy Sunset Trail at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. on days when lifts are operating.

Dog-friendly geo-caching excursions and family movie nights also are available at the resort.

New this year: lift-and-lunch combo passes, $24 for adults, $16 for kids.

Bring plenty of water for you and your dog, and always pick up after your pet.

ski, resort, dog-friendly, gondola, lift, zephyr, hike, restaurant, food, water, northstar

Kayla at the Ritz-Carlton
Kayla welcomes guests
You don’t have to be a skier or snowboarder to enjoy Lake Tahoe in winter: this year’s abundant snowfall has created a snowy wonderland for all, four-legged family members included. For five-paw treatment, book a room at the mid-mountain Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe at the Northstar California mountain resort. more »
As anyone coming up to Lake Tahoe from sea level knows, that first day of hiking above 6,500 feet is a pant-inducing endeavor. But did you know that you (and your dog) can “cheat?” more »
Gabe on Northstar Lake

Gabe on Northstar Lake

Sure, you can hike your way up to Sierra Nevada ridge lines, but in North Lake Tahoe, you can also “cheat” and get a lift. Northstar California and Squaw Valley USA are kicking off their summer seasons early this year due to the light snow pack, and at both resorts, dogs are allowed to ride up with their people on designated lifts. more »
Adorable dog in Lake Tahoe
Photo credit: Brendan Myers
Go for a Dip
Get a Lift
Float Your Boat
Paddle a Dog-friendly Canoe
Soak Up Nostalgia
Go for a Hike
Spend the Night
Share a Bite
Treat Your Pup
Get Festive

Go for a Dip
Yes, you can take your dog swimming at Lake Tahoe! True, there are only a handful of dog-friendly beaches, but for most dogs, just one a day is enough. One of our hidden favorites on the West Shore is the private beach at Obexer’s General Store in Homewood.

Get a Lift
One of the most fun experiences to be had with your dog at Tahoe is lift-assisted hiking. Enclosed gondola cars on two lifts at Northstar and the aerial tram at Squaw Valley welcome leashed pets. Whichever you choose, you’ll find lots of trail options up top.

Float Your Boat
For more fun on the water, join the animated crowds of summer vacationers who rent rafts in Tahoe City for a two- to three-hour, 5-mile float down the scenic Truckee River to River Ranch Resort. Truckee River Raft Co. counts dogs as regular passengers and will get you all fixed up.
 
Dog on Tahoe beach
Photo credit: Janeen Heath
Paddle a Dog-friendly Canoe
Dogs won't fit in just any kayak, and expecting them to balance like acrobats on a slippery bow is unrealistic if not dangerous. Tahoe City Kayak solves the problem with a line of Jackson Rec Kayaks whose cockpits are big enough to hold not just you, but Fido, too.

Soak Up Nostalgia
One of the most enjoyable sights at Lake Tahoe, especially for first-timers, is Tallac Historic Site, a collection of late 19th century summer estate homes and outbuildings about seven miles west of South Lake Tahoe casinos. Leashed dogs are welcome, and it’s especially enjoyable to visit on living-history days.
 
Dog hiking in Tahoe
Photo credit: potential past (CC)
Go For a Hike
Put paws to the path on hundreds of miles of trails in the Lake Tahoe area. For something new, try Van Sickle Bi-State Park near South Shore casinos. The main trail in the 575-acre park (part in California, part in Nevada) travels beneath the Heavenly Gondola lift line to a cluster of historic buildings before zigzagging up for magnificent views of the lake. North Shore bound? Check out the Tahoe City Lakeside Trail, a mile-long promenade through town connecting the 19-mile West Shore/Truckee River and North Shore Trails.

Spend the Night

Dog-friendly lodging abounds at Lake Tahoe, and it comes in all forms, from vacation-home rentals to hotels and motels, to rustic cabin resorts and RV parks. A favorite is the dog-passionate Larkspur Hotel Truckee. Check out dozens of other options on DogTrekker.com.

Share a Bite
It can be hard to find a place to share an outdoor meal at wintertime Lake Tahoe, but summer/fall is another matter. View our listings, pick a dog-friendly patio and chow down. One of our favorites is Meyer’s Downtown Café in South Lake Tahoe.

Treat Your Pup
After a day filled with outdoor recreation, pamper your four-legged friend with a spa treatment or toys and treats at one of Tahoe's dog specialty shops.

Get Festive
Two upcoming Squaw Valley USA festivals welcome well-behaved dogs on leash. The 26th Annual Foam Fest on Saturday, September 5, 2015 is one of the most anticipated beer and music festivals of the year! Proceeds from the event will support Disabled Sports to continue to provide sports rehabilitation and therapeutic recreation programs to anyone with any disability. Come support a tremendous cause while enjoying the open air festival with your pup!

Why not make it an entire weekend of festival fun? The 27th Annual Alpen Wine Fest on Sunday, September 6, 2015 includes wine tasting, live music, a silent auction and raffle. Entry into the event is a donation to Can Do MS, a foundation providing wellness and education for people with Multiple Sclerosis. Mark your calendar and be there!

Photo credit: potential past (CC)
Photo credit: Janeen Heath
Photo credit: Brendan Myers
 more »
Most hiking trails around Lake Tahoe—and there are hundreds—can be enjoyed in the company of your best friend. For a short hike with liquid rewards, pack a picnic and take an easy, 3.5-mile round-trip stroll to gorgeous Fallen Leaf Lake, second-largest body of water in the Tahoe Basin and easily accessible from a parking lot just off Highway 89. Also easy-going is the mile-in, mile-out Cascade Falls trail, accessed from a trailhead at Inspiration Point near Emerald Bay. more »
At Northstar-at-Tahoe, just $6 buys a day's worth of scenic lift rides that Fido and family members 12 and younger can enjoy for free. The experience starts on the Village Gondola, whose enclosed cabins run to the mid-mountain Lodge at Big Springs. From there, DogTrekkers can hop aboard a gondola on the Zephyr lift for a ride to the upper ridgelines and sweeping views of Lake Tahoe and the snow-crusted Sierra. more »
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