Squaw Valley, Alpine Meadows, CA Report: Spring in February

Mike Bartholow | | Conditions ReportConditions Report
Lake Tahoe from Alpine Meadows, CA | Photo: Mike Bartholow

Brought to you by Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows

Report from Monday, February 22, 2021 

Monday, February 22, 2021 was a proper Spring day at Alpine Meadows and Squaw Valley. I’m no Miles Clark, so you won’t see backflips and cliff drops in the Palisades in this post, but nonetheless, it was an excellent day. Following a fun day at Homewood the day before, I scrambled to try to score a free ticket to visit both resorts in one day. I had a meeting with a potential new employer at Squaw mid-day so it looked like my plan would come together easily.

High Traverse from Summit Six to Sherwood – Alpine Meadows, CA | Photo: Mike Bartholow

Alpine Meadows’ Summit Six chair was on wind-hold first thing in the morning, and there was quite a bit of grumbling about “money-hold” in the Roundhouse line. But most skiers don’t understand that wind speeds aren’t the only reason chairs go on wind-hold; wind direction comes into play too. East winds were hitting the top of the Summit Chair just right to slow down opening. Alpine Bowl Chair was open on time, so rather than complain about what wasn’t open, I just went and enjoyed what was. I tied in with a random skier in the Roundhouse line, and we took a few laps together.

Mike Simpson dropping in off the High Traverse | Photo: Mike Bartholow

After a few great laps off the Alpine Bowl Chair, my new ski partner and I rode the now open Summit Six and waited for our respective friends. While she took off for more Summit laps, my buddies and I hiked the High Traverse over into Sherwood. It’s cool that, even in our strange COVID environment, you can meet random new people at the ski area and make a few turns and new friends. My friend Randy Salzman has skied every day that Alpine Meadows has been open this season – 93 days in a row and counting!

Mike Simpson | Photo: Mike Bartholow

There was still soft, cold snow to be found in Sherwood, and we made a couple of laps off the ridge and in the gullies. I hooked up with another set of friends and made laps on Lakeview and Scott chairs before I had to hit the road to Squaw around noon. My timing was perfect, as Alpine Meadows Ski Patrol was starting to close terrain as the snow warmed in the sun. Cornology in February!

Randy Salzman and Mike and Ozzy Simpson skiing Sherwood | Photo: Mike Bartholow


Randy Salzman | Photo: Mike Bartholow


Ozzy Simpson | Photo: Mike Simpson

Trying to maximize my ski time, I ate lunch while driving over to Squaw Valley. I’d grown up skiing at both Alpine Meadows and Squaw Valley, but I hadn’t been to either in a couple of years, and I certainly hadn’t skied both on the same day. After my meeting, I hit the Squaw One chair for some afternoon turns. Multiple laps on Siberia, Shirley Lake, and Granite Chief were capped off by a couple of spins on the KT-22 Mothership on my way out. Spring conditions in the afternoon made for some great corn skiing.


Squaw Valley lift operator keepin’ it real | Photo: Mike Bartholow

Snow Report:

Squaw Valley Snow Report – 02/24/2021
Alpine Meadows Snow Report – 02/24/2021


Alpine Meadows NOAA Forecast – 02/24/2021


Squaw Valley NOAA Forecast – 02/24/2021

With a long period of high pressure, sunny skies, and warm temperatures in the forecast, Alpine Meadows and Squaw Valley will be skiing fantastic for the foreseeable future.

Get out and get some sun and snow.

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One thought on “Squaw Valley, Alpine Meadows, CA Report: Spring in February

  1. But no mention of the prevalent east winds that have been blowing tuesday weds and today as well which has been keeping most everything from softening up into actual spring conditions.
    Peeps should be more accurate in their articles as weather forecasts have mentioned suchs winds, Tahoe Lake wind advisory from 10 am to 10 pm yesterday kept things not spring like.
    jeebus peeps who are you trying to fool?
    Also can see wind data near real time at NWS remote data at bottom link of forecast page when you type in tahoe city, squaw or such for real accuracy instead of internet blog spraying, spit spit spit….

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