With the arid high desert and alpine terrain, the weather can go from balmy to blustery within the matter of a few hours. Here you’ll find some great activities keeping the ever-changing forecast in mind.
The days that locals adore, when Mother Nature means business your best bet is to stay indoors. Luckily Reno/Tahoe hosts a plethora of fun options for the whole family.
Looking to bring some of those outdoor interests inside? Head to Woodward Tahoe in Truckee where you can ski and snowboard sans snow. Enjoy foam pits, Olympic-size trampolines, parkour and skate ramps fit for a good practice session. If circling around a track at 45 mph is your style, then be sure to experience the high-speed indoor karts at Need2Speed in Reno. The electric karts zoom from zero-to-40 in less than five seconds as racers twist and turn around the track. Plus they have a fun black light mini golf course, too. woodwardtahoe.com; need2speed.com
Reno area museums are a great option for some educational play. The Terry Lee Wells Nevada Discovery Museum presents several tailored exhibits for all ages including their Inside Out: an Anatomy Experience and Da Vinci’s Corner. Hotrods, vintage and Hollywood favorites are what you’ll find at the National Automobile Museum. Or head to the Wilbur D. May Museum to enjoy the ethnographic collection of historic artifacts from all over the world. Make the Nevada Museum of Art a stop on the tour to view several exhibitions by esteemed artists. nvdm.org; automuseum.org; washoecounty.us; nevadaart.org
For some carnival games and spectacular shows, head to The Midway at Circus Circus Hotel Casino Reno. Having just finished an impressive renovation, here you’ll find pretty much any carnival and arcade game out there. Be sure to checkout a few of the circus acts where you’ll be wowed by dancers, balancing duos and a whole pack of trained dogs. Boomtown Fun Center at Boomtown Casino and Hotel is filled with over 200 video and redemption games, mini golf, a bounce house and some seriously fun rides — hop on the Rodeo Rider, Flight Simulator, Covered Wagon Ferris Wheel and (my favorite) the Antique Carousel. circusreno.com; boomtownreno.com
Want something a bit more hands on? Stop by Reno Guns & Range. This newish indoor training and shooting facility caters to all levels of gun handlers with an impressive showroom, live fire lanes and real-life simulation room. Wasting Arrows Indoor Archery is a bullseye for armament excitement in Reno. Here professionals will teach you how to hit a variety of targets, including flying objects in their trap archery course. Or head to any one of the great bowling alleys like Grand Sierra Resort Bowling Center in Reno, Tahoe Bowl in South Lake Tahoe, and Wink’s Silver Strike Lanes in Gardnerville. renoguns.com; wastingarrows.com; grandsierraresort.com; tahoebowl.com; winkssilverstrike.com
Blue bird bliss
Known as the beautiful sunny day after an overnight snowfall, the blue bird day is the perfect time to hit the slopes or plan other outdoor adventures where you can enjoy the crisp air, clear blue sky and fresh fallen snow.
At Camp Richardson Historic Resort the snowshoeing and cross-country skiing trails are awe-inspiring. With views spanning the majestic mountains surrounding Lake Tahoe, this is an experience to beat. Didn’t bring the right gear? Head to their Mountain Sports Center for everything you’ll need for a great day outside. camprichardson.com
How about a bird’s eye view of the area? SoaringNV will take you high in the sky in a glider over the Carson Valley, Lake Tahoe and Emerald Bay. For an even more adrenaline-pumping flight opt for the Tahoe Wild Ride packed with rolls, loops and even inverted flying! soaringnv.com
As they say, “Get hooked,” with Tahoe Sport Fishing Co. offering an unforgettable Lake Tahoe day out. Experienced captains are ready to help you troll, drift and jig your way to some great catches. With warm heated cabins and hot beverages for the whole family, this activity is available year round. Depending on the season, you just may angle mackinaw (a.k.a. lake trout), rainbow trout, brown trout and kokanee salmon. tahoesportfishing.com
A light snow day
Whether it’s a misty morning or nighttime dusting of the good stuff, there are plenty of ways to spend a day with some elemental variety. For instance, what about a sleigh ride? For over 40 years, Borges Sleigh Rides has offered this enchanting way to experience Lake Tahoe. Pulled by 2,000-pound Belgian draft horses, this is a fun experience for the family or a great option for a romantic date. sleighride.com
Get on the lake with Lake Tahoe Cruises. Able to accommodate 500 passengers, the M.S. Dixie II is the largest cruising vessel in South Lake Tahoe. Board one of their daytime cruises, dinner cruises and private charters for stunning views of the lake, Emerald Bay and Fannett Island. The indoor multi-level cabin is climate controlled for those chilly days and the outdoor vantages are beautiful. zephyrcove.com
How about some snowy action? Zephyr Cove Snowmobile Center offers exciting rides on the Tahoe Rim Trail. Climb to some of the highest peaks on their morning, afternoon, evening and full moon rides. Or, head for some inflatable fun at the tubing hills and more thrilling snowmobile rides around the track with Tahoe Snowmobiles. With three locations, Tahoe Snowmobiles has ride equipment safe enough for the kids to take a turn or two in the driver’s seat with mom or dad on board. zephyrcove.com/snowmobiling.aspx ; tahoesnowmobiles.com
Tie into your favorite skates to perfect your double axel triple toe loop at the Heavenly Village Ice Skating Rink in South Lake Tahoe, Squaw Valley’s Olympic Ice Pavilion, and the Reno Aces Ice Rink in the Freight House District in downtown Reno. And try your hand at curling at the South Lake Tahoe Ice Arena. skiheavenly.com; squawalpine.com; renoaces.com; tahoearena.com
For the thrill of mountain climbing without the mountains, BaseCamp at Whitney Peak Hotel boasts the world’s largest climbing wall scaling the side of the hotel tower. During those wet, chilly days, the indoor Bouldering Park is the main attraction. If you prefer to keep your feet on the ground, they also have a schedule filled with yoga and boot camp classes. basecampreno.com
No matter the weather, Reno/Tahoe is the wintertime adventure-seekers play place. Get out, explore and be sure to make the best of everyday!
By: Heidi Bethel