Terrain and Ski Tour Specs

Terrain and Ski Tour Specs

The stats chart and terrain icons gives the reader a quick idea of what to expect from the area, and the points are defined as follows:

Skiable Vert

This is defined as the elevation loss, in feet, of a continuous descent on a peak. For the locations in this guide, Skiable Vert is presented as a range of the shortest to the longest runs at a location. Skiable Vert is different than total elevation change (from trailhead to summit) because some areas require elevation gain to get to the slope you want to ski. This elevation gain is not counted in “Skiable Vert” because it is elevation that is not worth skiing, or not part of a continuous line. Think of Skiable Vert as the amount of elevation loss that you are likely to ski before stopping to put skins on for another lap. Elevations are rounded to the nearest 100 feet.

Approach Distance

This is the approximate hiking/skinning mileage before reaching the base of the described ski destination. This number does not include distance traveled once the base of the destination has been reached. Think of this as energy you will have to expend before starting your ascent. If the number listed is 50′, this means that it is easy to ski the described descent directly back to the car.


This is listed as the trailhead elevation, the summit elevation, and the total elevation gain. Elevations rounded to the nearest 100’. This will be written as: 8,000’ – 10,000’ (2,000’).


Of course every mountain has every aspect (N, S, E, W), but listed are the aspects that house the best terrain for a given location. Use this to help choose a location based on what type of snow you’re trying to find.


Tahoe has almost every type of terrain imaginable, but this guide groups the terrain into 6 general categories

  • Glades
  • Bowls
  • Chutes
  • Face
  • Extreme Descents
  • Gully