Life is full of chapters. The one chapter that has remained constant in our lives is our love for Lake Tahoe and Northstar. Our first introduction to Tahoe was hours after the big quake of 89 that took out the Bay Bridge in San Francisco. My husband and I were currently living in Little Rock, Arkansas and staying in San Francisco for a convention. We were riding a double decker tour bus just having completed a tour of the Muir Woods. We had circled down by the wharf and dropped several families off at the World Series game and had ventured back up to Market Street when the ground started shaking, glass shattering, concrete dropping from tops of buildings. Our thoughts at first were simple – let’s get out of here. We rented a car and headed for Tahoe. Love at first sight! Lightning can strike twice!
Years later we packed our bags and headed west to the Bay Area, Danville became home. Just a short 3 ½ – 7 hours drive to Tahoe, depending on conditions. It was time for these southerners to learn to ski. David was such a sport taking on such an endeavor at the age of 44, I was 37, Austin 7, Amy 5. Our first few years were spent visiting the various mountains and ski resorts; Homewood, Alpine Meadows, Squaw, Heavenly and Northstar. The ski bag was always packed and ready. The kids would get so excited when the 4 wheel drive with ski’s perched on the rack would be waiting in front of school, ready for the weekend mountain adventure. The constant packing, unpacking, hunting for a place to stay got old. We knew we liked the Northstar Mountain and the talk of a new Village was intriguing. We stopped in at Tahoe Mountain Realty to find out more and instantly connected with Tori Long. Tori guided us through one of the best investments we made in our family lifestyle.
We soon became founding members of the Tahoe Mountain Club and owners of a home in the Village. The key word is home, no more schlepping through parking lots with gear, no more packing gear, unpacking gear, forgetting gear. No more racing out of a rental because our time had expired. Now we welcomed a Sunday storm, just call the school and stay another day in our Mountain home. The kids joined the Northstar ski team and became expert skiers instantly and as a super bonus, established life long friendships.
Every mountain, every resort has it’s own personality Northstar projects a fun, safe and comfortable environment. My southern babies became “mountain rats” as we affectionately referred to them; happy exploring the mountain terrain with peers during the day and having fun ice skating, hanging out by the fire pits in the evening, all just steps away from home. The whole families’ circle of friends grew through the social activities at the Alpine Club, Shaffers Camp, and fellow ski team parents, and of course our bay area friends rarely pass on the opportunity to be entertained on the mountain. As David would say many times, I’m living a dream.
Many of our dreams were cut short with Davids’ fatal heart attack in 2007. We miss him and will always love him dearly and cherish the wonderful memories. He loved the mountains and we all feel his presence being in this place he loved. As many have said we came to visit for the winter, we chose to stay for the summer and fall. As the kids grew so have there interests; rock climbing, kayaking, hiking, biking they are loving it all, and there’s no better place to do it all than Tahoe. We also have a new addition to the family, Marti (105lb Golden Doodle) . He loves being in charge and cozying up on the sofa.
The kids are now in college or abroad, so the weekend trips are few and far between. David and I knew we wanted to live or have a home in a place where our children and grandchildren would want to come back to. Northstar has remained a wonderful constant in every chapter of our lives. I fully intend for it to continue.
Thank you Tori for the introduction to mountain life!