Is Snowboarding or Skiing worth the cost?


Shaan Anderson

Taken at the top of a slope at the Northstar Skiing Resort, snowboarding brings joy for many people.

Shaan Anderson, Staff Writer

Many consider snowboarding as dangerous, expensive, and annoying. However, trying out snowboarding or skiing at the Northstar Tahoe Resort is exhilarating and enjoyable. Even though it’s fun, there is an extreme cost of buying or renting the boards and gear, you also have to get tickets for the park. It’s not only the price, it’s very exhausting going and coming back. 

The first thing is to get tickets which cost around $200 each on weekends and around $150 each on weekdays. A season-long pass that allows you to go to Northstar and a few other resorts cost around 6500 per person, which means you will have to go at least once a month to get your worth out of it, but I recommend going more than once a month to get the full experience. If you want a skiing or snowboarding lesson, it will cost $250 for one full day on top of the tickets. 

“A season pass for an adult is 600 dollars while for teenagers, it’s 399 because of the high school discount,” said James Anderson.

My family and I usually go to Sports Basement to rent or buy snowboards, skis, and other gear. Renting a pair of skis with boots costs $90 for a day, $145 for a weekend, $310 for a week, and $540 for a season, while renting a snowboard with boots costs $60 for a day, $95 for a weekend, $205 for a week and $360 for a season. Renting a helmet costs $12 for a day, $18 for a weekend, $25 for a week, and $45 for a season to rent, while buying a helmet costs $150, and the goggles cost $150 too. 

If you want to buy a pair of skis, they cost around $700, and a snowboard costs around $500. Bring a beanie, a snow jacket, an extra pair of clothes, and a pair of waterproof gloves since it gets very cold and wet.  I would also recommend bringing your own snacks and drinks since snacks cost over ten dollars and drinks can cost up to five dollars. Don’t forget to pack the night before since you must wake up early. 

“Buying is around $700, $800 while renting is around $80 per rental. If you buy gear, you are stuck with it, so for kids, you should rent,” said Anderson.

My family and I usually wake up at 4 to drive to the Northstar Resort in Lake Tahoe since it’s a three-hour drive without traffic from Pleasanton. You want to arrive at eight to avoid traffic and get good parking. If you get there later than 9 it takes about two hours to get in, park, and catch a bus since the lines get so long. The line for the gondola to get up to the mountain takes about 30 minutes, while the lines for the ski lifts to get to the slopes take about 10 minutes. Enjoy your time because lunches cost about $30 per person. 

You will want to leave at the latest at 4 or 5 since the ski lifts start to close and the slopes get icy. Leaving Northstar will take about an hour, and the drive back will take about four hours since you will hit traffic. If you want to stay overnight, so you can go back the next day, I recommend getting a hotel in Reno which will cost around $100 to $300 compared to the overpriced hotels at the Northstar resort that are usually booked up. You will probably be exhausted by the end, but I feel it’s worth it if you go consistently. 

“When starting out, it’s frustrating to learn, but when you get going, it’s rewarding,” said Anderson.

So, is it worth going snowboarding and skiing? If you go only once a year, you keep forgetting what you learn, and it won’t be fun or worth it, but if you consistently go, you will get good at it, and you will start to love the exhilaration. 

Not only do you love it, but you also build stronger relationships with your friends and family. If they come and join you, it’s amazing to see how they and you have progressed over the seasons. Personally, I have built a stronger connection with my father and brother by snowboarding. I do believe it’s worth your time if you get into the sport. Is Snowboarding or Skiing worth the cost?