Throughout the summer, the #RecreateResponsibly guidelines helped us care for Truckee-Tahoe’s wild spaces and mountain community. With the change of seasons, we look towards these guidelines yet again but this time, with a different lens. Below you’ll find a winter edition of the seven Recreate Responsibly guidelines. Follow these simple, straightforward tips whenever you head outdoors, whether for a snowshoe hike, cross country ski, or backcountry adventure!
Know Before You Go
If you’ve read the story of the Donner Party, you know that severe winter storms are not uncommon and can make roads and trails impassable. Before visiting Truckee, get the latest information on roads, weather and conditions. Check our Know Before You Go page for travel updates and Truckee’s current COVID status.
Planning ahead is especially important this winter. Ski resorts require reservations and you should bring everything you need to make your car a basecamp, no matter what the weather. Bring plenty of gear and supplies when for the backcountry and check the Sierra Avalanche Center’s daily forecast before venturing out.
Practice Physical Distancing
Want to know a winter life hack? Less indoor gatherings and more outdoor fun! Some of our favorite outdoor activities are those where physical distancing is easy, like skiing/riding, snowshoeing, and cross country skiing. Wear a cozy fleece face covering to stay warm and move off the trail with a smile when passing others.
Play it Safe
We’re keeping first responders and health care workers at the top of mind this winter. Remember that backcountry rescues expose rescue teams to COVID at a time when resources are strained. Know your limits, your gear, the terrain and conditions to stay safe and lower your risk of injury. Get educated and take an avalanche class or brush up on basic first aid to keep yourself safe.
Winter snowstorms can make driving challenging, and at times dangerous, in Truckee-Tahoe. Choose recreation close to your home, hotel, or rental cabin. If you’re visiting from out of town, be mindful of the community and learn how to be a respectful, responsible traveler.
Leave No Trace
Winter is still an important time to follow the seven Leave No Trace principles. When you’re on the trail, remember to pack out everything you pack in. Carry poop bags for dog waste, pick up trash, and protect Truckee-Tahoe’s winter snowpack… in the summer it becomes our drinking water!
Build an Inclusive Outdoors
Whether you’re visiting from the city and it’s your first time on snow or you’re a veteran backcountry skier, Truckee-Tahoe trails are for everyone. All are welcome to explore and experience a true winter wonderland. You can build an inclusive outdoors by greeting others with a smile and inviting them to join you in Recreating Responsibly.
Share Recreate Responsibly!
Tell a friend! Better yet, tell with your ski partners, or those you venture into the backcountry with, about the Recreate Responsibly winter edition guidelines. Help us spread this message and share your commitment to #RecreateResponsibly by using the hashtag on social media, and tag us, Visit Truckee-Tahoe on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. If we all work together, we can protect Truckee-Tahoe’s wild spaces and thriving communities for decades to come.
Ski Well, Be Well, & Ski Kind
Hey skiers and riders, here’s another way to have a safe, fun, and respectful winter. After you’ve digested the Recreate Responsibly guidelines, think of ways to #SkiKind this winter! The Ski Kind Backcountry Responsibility Code was developed to help you be your best self both on and off the snow. In these difficult times, it’s more important than ever to spread kindness (from 6 feet away!). Even though we’re wearing face coverings, we can still see the smile in your eyes!
Siobhan traveled the American West as a National Park Ranger before setting down roots in Truckee. Outdoor adventure is her bread and butter and most days you can find her skiing, trail running, or backpacking. Follow along with her adventures on Instagram @siokenney.