Ski resorts push carpools, free shuttles |

Ski resorts push carpools, free shuttles

Amanda Fehd
Dan Thrift / Tahoe Daily Tribune/ Skiers' cars are parked along a residential street near Heavenly Mountain Resort.

While parking at ski resorts may be a problem at times, many hope the solution won’t be more paved lots, but a push for improved public transportation and carpooling.

“I’d rather it be busy on some days than have huge parking structures all over the place,” said Zach Gordon, an employee at Winter Wonderland, a ski shop on the corner of Ski Run Boulevard and Needle Peak Road in South Lake Tahoe.

Some skiers have tried to woo Gordon and co-worker Ryan Byrge into providing valet service to the resort when parking gets bad.

Kirkwood Mountain Resort president Tim Cohee said the resort will spend tens of thousands of dollars this year rewarding employees for carpooling. The more people they fit into a car, the more vouchers they receive to spend on gas, food and beverages at the resort.

Sierra-at-Tahoe has a similar reward system. The resort educates lodging properties to encourage guests to take advantage of its free shuttle. The resort offers free preferred parking to hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles.

Sierra also partners with a Web site called where skiers and snowboarders seeking rides can connect with those offering them.

All South Shore resorts provide free shuttle service, as well as early-morning employee buses.

Kirkwood houses 200 employees on its property, and shuttles another 100 per day.

Heavenly did not return calls for comment Thursday.

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