TAHOE CITY, Calif. - Those who cross-country ski and snowshoe will have a new facility to enjoy recreational activities this winter.
The Tahoe City Public Utility District, in partnership with Tahoe Cross Country Ski Area and Duncan Golf Management, will open the Tahoe City Golf Course to winter recreational activities from Dec. 22 to March 31, weather permitting, as part of a pilot program.
"I think it's a tremendous resources for our community," said Cindy Gustafson, district general manager. "It's what we've heard in response to many, many community meetings about trying to build more recreational activities for Tahoe City in the winter months."
Activities that will be permitted on the dog-friendly golf course are cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, walking and sledding. The golf course will operate from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day from Dec. 22 to Jan. 6, and every Friday through Monday from Jan. 7 to March 31, with rental equipment and food and beverages provided by Tahoe Cross Country and Duncan Golf Management, respectively, all of which will be available at the golf club house.
On Friday, Nov. 16, the TCPUD board of directors unanimously approved the use of up to $40,000 of property tax revenue to be invested in the program. Tahoe Cross Country will invest approximately $5,000 through the purchase of rental equipment, while the value of Duncan Golf Management's financial investment can't be determined at this time, said Bob Bolton, director of the parks and recreation.
There will be a use cost on days of operation along with fees for rental equipment and food and beverages, he said.
"(They) still yet to be finalized," Bolton said. "... The idea is that nobody is going to lose money on this, but we're not going to price out the community, so it will be a fair cost that will try to make us all break even."
For days the golf course isn't operated, it will be open free of charge to cross-country skiers, snowshoers and walkers, with donations accepted, but sledding will not be allowed.
"That needs to be supervised, and they can only use the rental sleds that we provide on that sled hill," Bolton said. "That's a real small tot sled hill. The intent is not for the bigger kids or adults; it's more for small families."
The trails will be groomed daily by Tahoe Cross Country, with a packed trail along the edge of the property for walking, and parallel to that will be the main ski trail with additional trails to "add some variety," said Kevin Murnane, Tahoe XC general manager.
The ski perimeter will be between 2 and 2.5 kilometers, he said, which roughly translates to more than a mile, but less than two.
"(The) Tahoe City's PUD and Parks and Rec is about providing recreation for the community, so that is the goal," Bolton said.
"We're all recognizing this as a pilot program ... so we're not taking on a whole lot of risk," Bolton said earlier. "We're also looking at a 50/50 percent share on profits, and if there is some reason for some losses, we're looking at the offsets would come from a reduced revenue from the operations that we already have."
Bolton said adjustments deemed necessary will be made throughout the winter, with public input - which is welcome - having a big impact.
"We're hoping for it to be a success and grow," he said. "We intend to add more amenities next winter if we feel we've got success this year."
TCPUD, in partnership with the North Lake Tahoe Resort Association, Truckee Tahoe Airport District and Placer County, purchased the property this spring for about $4.7 million.
A property oversight committee composed of the funding partners had its first meeting Nov. 7, which focused on future group function, said Sandy Evans Hall, CEO and executive director of the North Lake Tahoe Chamber/CVB/Resort Association, who was present at the meeting. The next oversight committee meeting is scheduled for January 2013, Hall said, the date of which has yet to be determined.