Badger Pass Ski Area, California's first ski resort, will open its downhill operations Friday.
Thanks to recent storms, the Yosemite National Park ski resort, which began operations in 1935, is reporting base depths of 24 inches for its downhill runs. Badger Pass' Nordic Center offering snowshoeing and cross-country skiing opened Saturday
Free shuttles to Badger Pass from Yosemite National Park lodges also are scheduled to begin service Friday.
Details: YosemitePark.com or call (801) 559-4949 or (559) 253-5676.
For 24-hour ski conditions, call (209) 372-1000. Road and weather information, call: (209) 372-0200.
China Peak operations nearing 100%
China Peak Mountain Resort, which opened last month, is nearing 100% operations heading into the holidays.
Chairs 1, 2, 6 and 7 along with the 400-foot moving carpet in the beginner area are running daily starting at 9 a.m. After 11 inches of snow overnight Tuesday, conditions are excellent, with powder, machine groomed and skier-packed powder.
With more storms and cold temperatures in the forecast, the ski resort at Huntington Lake expects to open Chair 5 -- to the top of China Bowl -- by this weekend.
Mavericks off until after New Year's
Several massive North Pacific swells are slated to hit the Bay Area coastline this week, but the Mavericks Invitational won't be contested until at least January.
The window to hold the big-wave contest, which hasn't been held the past two seasons, opened Nov. 9 and extends through March 31. But staging the one-day event at the surf break off Pillar Point Harbor requires a number of blackout days due to the unavailability of local agencies involved.
"While the Christmas and New Year holidays often bring swell, the holidays have a major impact on staffing for law enforcement and local agencies (Sheriff, Fire, Parks, CHP, Harbor District, etc.)," event organizers wrote on their website. "Therefore, they have blacked out the dates of December 18 through January 1."
Access to the Pillar Point Air Force Station, which sits atop the cliff overlooking Mavericks and is a key location for filming, photographing and monitoring safety at the event, also is limited. That includes an 11-day stretch at the end of January, a window that often brings great wave and weather conditions.
Six other days in February and six in March also are blacked out due to air station restrictions.
Tahoe residents opposed to Homewood expansion
Lake Tahoe residents and conservationists are challenging the expansion of the Homewood ski resort in Sacramento federal court.
Opponents say the size of the planned expansion would pose an environmental danger to Lake Tahoe and not conform with the neighborhood.
Used gear sale
REI's used gear sale for members runs Dec. 27-29, but you can still sign up at the event. Runs 5-9 p.m. daily with entry by lottery. REI.com/stores/fresno