Dawn Patrol: Squaw Valley USA launches a rise and shine program | SierraSun.com

Dawn Patrol: Squaw Valley USA launches a rise and shine program

Vicki Kahn
Special to the Sun
Squaw Valley USA's new CEO Andy Wirth rides the Shirley Lake lift the morning of the inaugural Dawn Patrol.

SQUAW VALLEY USA and#8212; Waking up before the crack of dawn in the Sierras has its advantages. Usually it’s viewing vibrantly colored vistas as the sun pushes up from behind the mountain tops. Two days before Christmas, Squaw Valley USA invited some local VIPs and friends of the mountain resort to help launch the ski area’s new early morning ski program: The and#8220;Dawn Patrol. In addition to experiencing the soft early morning light glistening on Squaw Valley’s rugged terrain, skiers were treated to an elevation 8,200 foot mountaintop breakfast at the Terrace Restaurant. The piece de resistance? First tracks on Shirley Lake bowl for an hour plus of skiing before the general public arrived!

The cable car was filled with skiers beaming ear to ear and#8212; no grumpy early risers here. Squaw Valley USA’s management team mingled with guests including new CEO Andy Wirth, GM Mike Livak, Mountain Operations Consultant Brian McCartney and former Chairman of the Board Nancy Cushing. Andy Wirth asked guests to e-mail him their reviews and suggestions of the early bird ski program. On top of the mountain, Olympic gold medalist Jonny Moseley, fresh from his and#8220;Skating with the Starsand#8221; TV gig, was glad-handing and graciously obliging for photo opps. After eggs, omelets, sausage, fresh fruit, and more everyone bolted for the slopes to commune with wind blown powder and fresh corduroy. The Dawn Patrol program will be open to the public on weekends through March. For more info visit http://www.squaw.com/dawn-patrol.

The early bird may catch the worm, but these skiers caught some fresh tracks: Chaco Mohler, photographer Elizabeth Carmel, Tahoe TV reporter Karey Todd, Realtor Ron Gajar, Justin Broglio, Tahoe TV owner Eric Brandt, Charlie Pendrell, Keoki Flagg, John Fagan, Greg Murtha, Ed Heneveld, Gary Talman, Bill Anderson, Tom Murphy, Sean Kristl, Amelia Richmond, Jeff Pratt, Loni Amato, Les Pedersen, Nicole and Jamie Blair, Kali Koply of Uncorked and Doug Stoup.

Few local restaurants have a more breathtaking setting than the lakefront West Shore Cafe and Inn, which just re-opened for the winter season. Jessica and#8220;Yessand#8221; Bryce, formerly of Baxter’s Bistro in Northstar and Frederick’s Bistro in Incline Village, Nev. has signed on as the cafe’s new executive chef. Bryce designed a delicious, classic New Year’s menu with an innovative twist. The creative celebratory dishes will including oyster-saffron bisque, frisee with pine nuts and burrata cheese and venison osso bucco. Reservations are being taken for New Year’s Eve at 530-525-5200. Check out http://www.westshorecafe.com for hours and lodging.

No time for breakfast on your way skiing? Poppy’s Frozen Yogurt and Waffle Shop in the middle of Tahoe City and#8212; in between Nine Lives Winter Gear and Tahoe City Kayak at 521 N. Lake Blvd. and#8212; is now cooking up yummy home made sweet and savory waffles and waffle breakfast sandwiches every day. They also serve coffee, espresso drinks and to-die-for hot chocolate made with Scharffen Berger cocoa. The outside pick-up window is perfect for those on the go. Owners Sarah and John Holster make up their homemade waffle batter fresh every day. Specialty waffles include apple cinnamon, parmesan rosemary and banana walnut. Call 530-581-0885 or visit http://www.poppystahoe.com.

and#8212; Vicki Kahn may be reached at vickikahn@sbcglobal.net

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