• 04-01-2006
    KBA
    Northstar closed to MB this year
    Be advised that Northstar will NOT be running mountain biking this summer due to the contruction that's going on around the mountain. This should be fairly reliable given that I work there in the winter and it was announced at all departmental meetings today.
  • 04-01-2006
    Finch Platte
    Yeah.
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by KBA
    Be advised that Northstar will NOT be running mountain biking this summer due to the contruction that's going on around the mountain. This should be fairly reliable given that I work there in the winter and it was announced at all departmental meetings today.

    Thanks for the info. I thought it might be coming after I saw this hugh jass article in the SF Chron:

    Downhill goes upscale
    Northstar plans a mid-mountain, five-star hotel
    Kathryn Reed, Special to The Chronicle

    Thursday, March 30, 2006

    Truckee -- Ski-in, ski-out lodging at Lake Tahoe is about to move to the very high end. A five-star Ritz-Carlton hotel is scheduled to open mid-mountain at Northstar-at-Tahoe in 2009.

    Construction will begin this summer on the $300 million project, which will include a 172-room hotel, 75 full-ownership residences, 77 fractional-ownership residences, several pools and restaurants, a spa, and 11,000 square feet of meeting space.

    When the Ritz is finished, work will begin on 1,450 luxury condos that will surround the hotel.

    Workers will don snowshoes to survey the 20-acre site in April to flag the initial trees to be removed. How much lumber will be hauled off the mountain is unknown, although developer East West Partners is going after a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certificate from the U.S. Green Building Council -- just like it did for much of the village at Northstar that opened this ski season.

    Recycled rubber will be used for the roof. Wood and rock from the surrounding area will be incorporated into the design. The only wood-burning fireplaces will be in public areas, with each hotel room having a gas fireplace.

    "The exterior is driven by the look of Lake Tahoe," said Tom Dunlap, project manager with East West Partners. Renderings portray it to be more grand than the Marriott complex in South Lake Tahoe, not quite as regal as the Ahwahnee in Yosemite National Park and a bit less ostentatious than the Ritz-Carlton in the Rockies.

    Even though some people are taken aback when learning about the mega-complex being built above the village, the Highlands area has been marked for this type of development since the 1970s. It was about five years ago that East West and Ritz-Carlton officials begin negotiations, with the current agreement having taken shape in the last couple of years.

    "I think this will probably have an equal wow factor that we have found with Bachelor Gulch," Vivian Deuschl, spokeswoman for the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Co., said in comparing the Northstar project to the company's 4-year-old Beaver Creek, Colo., complex.

    What room rates will be or a private residence might cost remains to be seen.

    "It's fair to say the private residences will be at the very high end because of the nature of the project itself," Deuschl said.

    She said Ritz-Carlton has been successful with its California properties, notably in San Francisco and Half Moon Bay, so the company felt the timing was right to expand into ski country. Plus, the four-season appeal of the Tahoe area swayed the Ritz decision-makers.

    Sharilyn Nelson, a resident of Truckee, says the addition to the neighborhood will be positive.

    "They are focusing on Northstar as a destination resort, so I don't think the impact would really be felt by residents because they would be contained at the Northstar complex," Nelson said. "It's a real shot in the arm for the economy ... and more jobs."

    Dunlap, with East West Partners, predicts about 700 people will be involved in the building of the hotel during the course of more than three years. The hotel is apt to employ 300 to 400 people, a mix of part-time, full-time and seasonal employees.

    What the economic impact on the region might be is not being forecast. But those workers will have a place to live. Part of the deal includes employee housing to be built incrementally. The first 97 apartments open in autumn. At build-out there will be 300 units, all kept at a price workers can afford, according to Dunlap.

    East West has a contract with Booth Creek Ski Holdings of Vail, Colo., the owners of Northstar, to build 1,800 residential units on the property, which is a few miles off Interstate 80.

    The first 350 units are in the $250 million village complex that includes 100,000 square feet of commercial space. The average price of the sold-out Phase One was $1.4 million. The remaining 1,450 units will be in the Highlands area, surrounding the Ritz.

    Parking for all Highlands properties will be underground. A new road will be built. Two bridges across tributaries to Martis Creek are part of the environmental considerations.

    Anyone will be able to get to the Ritz via a gondola, which is likely to be a six-seater. It will whisk riders 3,300 feet uphill from the village to the hotel in eight minutes. The hotel entry will be 25 feet from the gondola.

    Skiers staying at the Ritz will be able to schuss onto the slopes at mid-mountain, where a day lodge and multiple lifts are. Or they can ski to the base village.

    Soshana Riss of Novato, who has had a season pass at Northstar for two years, is not excited by the project because of the perceived impact it will have on the mountain.

    "I feel having this enormous place at mid-mountain, that is crowded enough already, may increase congestion. Parking at the lower mountain is a nightmare. If you don't get there at 8 a.m., you have to hike," Riss said. "A Ritz-Carlton in the middle of the mountain takes away the family feel."

    Sally Boice, who has been a part-owner of a house at Northstar since 1985, is also concerned about the additional people on the slopes and about losing the family atmosphere.

    "It's going to transform it into a very exclusive, high-end resort that I'm not terribly comfortable with," the Chico resident said. "I like things on a lower-key level. It's going to alter things for the families that it serves. When we first started skiing there, they limited how many tickets they would sell for the day. They stopped that a long time ago. I guess it's only going to get worse as it goes into this new phase."

    Northstar officials said that with upgrading slower chairlifts and adding others, the resort will be able to accommodate the additional skiers and snowboarders. Two lifts are being reconfigured for the 2006-07 season and a new one will be installed, with three others awaiting permit approval.

    Northstar would not say how many skiers visit on a given day, but the mountain can accommodate 8,000 to 9,000 skiers when the parking lots are full, according to Northstar spokeswoman Nicole Belt. She also said new trails are being developed and others widened.


    fp
  • 04-01-2006
    timsan
    What about the Thursday XC Racing?
    Will the Thurs. night races still go on?
  • 04-01-2006
    KBA
    I doubt there will be anything but I can always check. Given that the guys in the bike shop will not likely be around, and the lifts will be shut down, I'd say its unlikely that there'll be anything MB going on there this summer.
    The MB operations were cancelled due ostensibly to the contruction conflicts, so it's still a safe bet that it'll be back the next season if the hotel is completed. The biking has been a big draw for summer operations there. If you think that a Ritz-Carlton and the downhill bike crowd wouldn't mix, think again. You'd be surprised at who comes through that place with a snowboard strapped to their back. So there is hope for following seasons.
    Anybody for some Grey Poupon on their Cliff Bar?
  • 04-01-2006
    KBA
    I guess I should add that the length of the impact is most likely going to be tied to how well they develope the "back way in" this summer for construction materials and crews, rather than the actual length of the construction. We can hope anyway. . .
  • 04-01-2006
    matt
    Is this a joke?

    Seriously, I could see this happening. So is it a joke or not?

    If its true I'm pissed. Northstar better give me $200 for the season pass I won and give everyone $50 who had a season pass last year.
  • 04-01-2006
    Raptordude
    Oh my god.
  • 04-01-2006
    KBA
    Dude if this is a joke then Northstar better run and hide cause I'll take more than $200 out of them - it was announced at our weekly department meetings this morning and we were fielding questions from winter guests about it all day. The woman I work for is married to the guy who ran the bike shop for the last several years - I think she would know. I hear the guys in the bike shop, many of whom work in Snowell during the winter are not happy.

    If you have doubts - call them. I would, except I'll be there tomorrow morning anyway. We all thought it was an April Fools joke at first, but it would be one hell of a stupid joke to tell your Season Pass staff and have them telling the guests. Misinformation is taken very seriously there - they really do want people to be happy. Unfortunately, all it would take is one biker running face first into a D5 Catapillar at 40 mph to wipe the smile off a lot of peoples faces.
  • 04-01-2006
    matt
    I just guessed since it was April Fools, but I guess its not a joke.

    So it is true.

    Sounds like I will get about $200 richer. What do they do about all the people who had season passes last year and got the $50 vouchers for this year? Do they all now get $50 cash?

    Thanks for the info
  • 04-02-2006
    slashk
    Cal State Series Race
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by KBA
    Be advised that Northstar will NOT be running mountain biking this summer due to the contruction that's going on around the mountain. This should be fairly reliable given that I work there in the winter and it was announced at all departmental meetings today.

    So Team Big Bear is promoting the Sept 9th Cal State Series races at NorthStar -- are these also going to be a casualty of the construction ?

    http://teambigbear.com/event_detail.php?event_id=147
  • 04-02-2006
    detoilet
    what a bummer!
  • 04-02-2006
    george_da_trog
    Man, I had a date with the crew at SWD Racing for opening day. The were going to loan me a DH rig and I was going to be shown around.

    george
  • 04-02-2006
    Ebo
    Looks like they are trying to make Northstar (Flatstar) another Deer Valley. High priced lift tickets, vallets to park your car, $7 beers, over priced accomadations, and one big, groomed, intermediate ski area. No thanks. Much better skiing just down the road.
  • 04-02-2006
    matt
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Ebo
    Much better skiing just down the road.

    Shhh......:)
  • 04-02-2006
    kidwoo
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by KBA
    Unfortunately, all it would take is one biker running face first into a D5 Catapillar at 40 mph to wipe the smile off a lot of peoples faces.

    Oh great.......now the mountain bikers themselves are believing this bullsh1t.

    That mountain runs groomers during the day surrounded by people involved in a sport that occurs at over twice the speeds of anyone on a dh bike. Plus they build a kickas$ terrain park and have noggin eating trees that have in fact killed several people over the last few years.

    Tell your employers they're deluded. You don't need to be as well.
  • 04-02-2006
    Ebo
    Oh Yeah....Umm.... Ok... I was wrong and spiteful.You should all go to Northstar next winter. From what I've heard, it has the best overall terrain in Tahoe. Plus, all the cool people are there. You will experience small crowds, zero lift lines, superb parking, and best of all, no traffic getting there. In my reference to "better skiing down the road", I meant areas such as Diamond Peak, Homewood, Granlibakken, Tahoe Donner, Boreal, Donner Ski Ranch,etc, were very close in stature to Northstar. IMHO, Northstar is THE destination resort on the west coast. Just my 2 cents of course.
  • 04-02-2006
    kidwoo
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Ebo
    Oh Yeah....Umm.... Ok... I was wrong and spiteful.You should all go to Northstar next winter. From what I've heard, it has the best overall terrain in Tahoe. Plus, all the cool people are there. You will experience small crowds, zero lift lines, superb parking, and best of all, no traffic getting there. In my reference to "better skiing down the road", I meant areas such as Diamond Peak, Homewood, Granlibakken, Tahoe Donner, Boreal, Donner Ski Ranch,etc, were very close in stature to Northstar. IMHO, Northstar is THE destination resort on the west coast. Just my 2 cents of course.


    Hee hee.


    That's just what I keep thinking.

    Northstar needs MORE people there in the winter. I will say this. It is certainly the most dangerous mountain in tahoe on winter weekends.
  • 04-03-2006
    Fillmoe Slim
    Well in my mind Northstar has sold out and this is the last year i'll have a winter season pass there (i've had one for 5 yrs now). I MTB'd there for the first time last year and was hoping to get up at least a couple of times this summer. Oh well, more time for D'ville I guess. Too bad.
  • 04-03-2006
    ender
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by KBA
    Be advised that Northstar will NOT be running mountain biking this summer due to the contruction that's going on around the mountain. This should be fairly reliable given that I work there in the winter and it was announced at all departmental meetings today.

    April fools freaks. I just called n* and they will be open.
  • 04-03-2006
    keen
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by ender
    April fools freaks. I just called n* and they will be open.

    Well just who did you talk with ? I just called as well and they are un-sure they will open due to construction.
  • 04-03-2006
    Acadian
    I think Ender called the Janitorial hot line...;)
  • 04-03-2006
    DH40
    Sure, the Ropes course will be open.
  • 04-03-2006
    ender
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Acadian
    I think Ender called the Janitorial hot line...;)

    I talked to the operator but, she was loaded with construction info. Someone else on Ridemonkey called and talked to someone else who was unsure about it being open for summer or not.

    You would think managment would know by now if they would be open or not. I'm going to be really depressed if they don't open. :(
  • 04-03-2006
    Acadian
    from a thread on RM...

    Quote:

    I emailed the general managers office this morning and this is the response they sent me back:

    Unfortunately, we have decided not to open the bike park for this summer
    only. There are far too many projects on the mountain to ensure a safe and
    enjoyable experience. We will be back in 2007 with new trails.

    Regards,
    Terri

    Terri Viehmann & Suellen McGeorge, Executive Assistant
    Northstar-At-Tahoe
    Ph: 530.562.2235 Fx: 530.562.2264
  • 04-03-2006
    ender
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Acadian
    from a thread on RM...

    man, this seriously sucks. At least there is still downieville. Looks like I'm going to take 2 trips to Whistler.
  • 04-03-2006
    Acadian
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by ender
    Looks like I'm going to take 2 trips to Whistler.

    same here...probably early july and late aug.

    and if this is a precedent and they close N* for good, I might have to move back home.
  • 04-03-2006
    Ryan G.
    Guess I will stick to D'ville, toads, hole in the ground and some other haunts!
  • 04-03-2006
    ender
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Acadian
    same here...probably early july and late aug.

    and if this is a precedent and they close N* for good, I might have to move back home.

    I'm probably going late July, race in colorado after that. Maybe go again late August.

    Yeah, n* was a large factor in me staying in the bay area.
  • 04-03-2006
    matt
    I'm pissed about Northstar not opening.

    But I'm more pissed about how few days I got in at Granlibakken this year. That place is sooo fun. Its got a few thousand vertical feet and its sheltered location keeps it isolated from the wind.
  • 04-03-2006
    MrCrash
    Anyone know how Mammoth or Kirkwood compares to Northstar? I'm looking forward to my first Downieville trip this summer, but I don't picture it being the same in terms of the terrain.
  • 04-03-2006
    NorKal
    Who cares if stupid rockstar will be open next summer? I'll spend the extra hour to drive to Mammoth. They did waaay more trail maintenence last summer than N* to keep me coming back for more. What has N* done for me lately? So they built a couple of bridges two years ago, big whoop. Nothing was changed last year. They need to get their act together and build trails that are challanging AND fun. :(
  • 04-03-2006
    Ebo
    Kirkwood is very small time compared to either. Chairs 1 & 2 are open to bikes. Chair 1 is a beginner lift, while Chair 2 offers a few different options, none very challenging. Downieville has lots of sweet trails for different levels. The Lakes Basin area is quite rocky and technical, but you have to earn your turns so to speak. I've been riding there for the past ten years and still not tired of it. Except for the main shuttle run, Butcher Ranch, you can often ride without the crowds.
  • 04-03-2006
    Mr.P
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Khemical
    Who cares if stupid rockstar will be open next summer? I'll spend the extra hour to drive to Mammoth. They did waaay more trail maintenence last summer than N* to keep me coming back for more. What has N* done for me lately? So they built a couple of bridges two years ago, big whoop. Nothing was changed last year. They need to get their act together and build trails that are challanging AND fun. :(

    Please enlighten me if I am wrong: There are no other trails like Sticks and Stones nor STD. Slow and super technical.

    I train up all year to take my N* riding to the next level. I was really looking forward to it this year.

    Mr. P
  • 04-03-2006
    Finch Platte
    Who cares??
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Khemical
    Who cares if stupid rockstar will be open next summer? I'll spend the extra hour to drive to Mammoth. They did waaay more trail maintenence last summer than N* to keep me coming back for more. What has N* done for me lately? So they built a couple of bridges two years ago, big whoop. Nothing was changed last year. They need to get their act together and build trails that are challanging AND fun. :(

    Who cares??? From reading the posts here and on the DH board, quite a few of us. And the trails are challanging (sic). You're just not riding fast enough.

    Selfish bunt.

    fp
  • 04-03-2006
    Melt
    fucc i go and spend hella money on a rig and now the place isnt gonna be open

    so is mammoth sick or what?
  • 04-03-2006
    Fast Eddy
    You can still ride there.
    North* is all national forest. They can't close the trails, just the lifts. Squaw Valley, OTOH, is all private property.
  • 04-04-2006
    JFR
    Unbelievable. The year I finally get a N* bike, they close. Fortunantly it's more like "almost got" since I'm looking at the cashiers check scheduled for mail today. The sellers gunna be pissed. (Edit: The bike purchace is not ebay.)

    This is truly an unfortunate situation and I'm super bummed.

    On the bright side. I understand the original plan was to close for TWO years, but last year they managed to stay open. :) It's also rumored they are indeed planning to cater to mtbers in the future and have been looking at you know where as a model.
  • 04-04-2006
    KBA
    Heads up
    I passed this thread on to the POWERS THAT BE at NS, and they've promised to post some offical responses and explenations. From what I've heard internally, NS is no happier about this than any of us. Hell I don't even ride there in the summer, I ride the other side of the ridge, but if NS is closed it means my favorite trails get even more traffic.

    And who's been ripping on Gralibakken. . .home of the National Championship Downhill Ski races! Dear lord, just riding their tow ropes and magic carpets scares the crap out of mortal men. I hear Warren Miller won't even go there (wuss).
  • 04-04-2006
    kidwoo
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Fast Eddy
    North* is all national forest.

    As I understand it, it's actully under thier ownership where the dh trails are. Just lookout mountain is still usfs lease.

    I think that's why the trails are there in the first place. They don't have to deal with the same gripes that mammoth and kirkwood do as far as new trail construction since it's under lease. The irony of a path through the woods being an issue at these places vs. putting in a chairlift kills me.

    That said I've ridden there a bunch after work (my office is right over the backside) and never once been confronted. Their trail network is treated like an amenity for people living/staying there so it's fair game. I've even shuttled it without problems.
  • 04-04-2006
    matt
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by KBA
    And who's been ripping on Gralibakken. . .home of the National Championship Downhill Ski races! Dear lord, just riding their tow ropes and magic carpets scares the crap out of mortal men. I hear Warren Miller won't even go there (wuss).

    I'm mad. Even if Northstar isn't the greatest, its the loss of one NOrcal DH spot.

    I've been shredding G-bak (thats what the hardcore folk call it) all winter this year. Miller filmed me jibbing it up on the sled hill.

    Warren got broke there though, the tow rope touched him in a bad way.:eek:
  • 04-04-2006
    jhruth
    Northstar Shmortstar - WHO CARES ... DOWNIEVILLE !!!
    Who can beat the trails and then a beer at St. Charles place bar with a bunch of 50 year old women with their t1ts on the floor.... CAN'T BEAT IT WITH A STICK !!! :D
  • 04-04-2006
    Obi
    1 Attachment(s)
    I still think this is an April Fools Joke, but...
    ..on that note, Tahoe's going too upscale anyhow. Read my bumper sticker, it says it all.
  • 04-04-2006
    Bike Daddy
    Private Property
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Fast Eddy
    North* is all national forest.

    Totally wrong. Northstar is 100% private property.
  • 04-04-2006
    KBA
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by matt
    I'm mad. Even if Northstar isn't the greatest, its the loss of one NOrcal DH spot.

    I've been shredding G-bak (thats what the hardcore folk call it) all winter this year. Miller filmed me jibbing it up on the sled hill.

    Warren got broke there though, the tow rope touched him in a bad way.:eek:


    Ya didn't happen to catch that on film did ya? I see dollar signs everywhere. . .

    Yeah I know, just like N*. . .give it a rest.

    BTW, it's not a total loss. The scrambling I'm hearing tells me that it's a temporary thing. The head of Marketing is going to the mat to see if some reciprical stuff can be setup with other resorts. The more you guys bark, the more likely you are to get it back soon. Me, I'm going TC-Watson Lake - Western States. I like to pedal and don't like to pay (go figger).
  • 04-05-2006
    Bernhardt
    To add to this, I was told by a liftie at Kirkwood, yesterday, that their bike park would also be closed this summer. For the same reason: Construction. In Kirkwood's case, they're putting in a restaurant (at the top of 2) and a chondola (a detachable lift with both gondola cars and chairs on it at the same time).

    I wouldn't plan on the Mammoth bike park opening anytime soon either. 20+ feet of snow base is going to take a while to melt. This is more snow than they had at this time last year. Mammoth's current ski season has already been extended through the 4th of July. They made the 4th last year for skiing, and were operating the lower bike(main lodge to town) park at the same time - with some detours around snow.
  • 04-05-2006
    matt
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Bernhardt
    To add to this, I was told by a liftie at Kirkwood, yesterday, that their bike park would also be closed this summer. For the same reason: Construction. In Kirkwood's case, they're putting in a restaurant (at the top of 2) and a chondola (a detachable lift with both gondola cars and chairs on it at the same time).

    Yeah, Mammoth definitely beats Northstar, but I don't think anyone cares about Kirkwood. Do they have anything besides fireroads to ride down? I've never seen any pics or anything. If they had more that would be great though...