December 2015 – rideNSC: Ride Sharing

Sandy Kiyomura

If you haven’t already heard, this is the El Nino Year. In an effort to create more opportunities to ski at Tahoe, NSC has established a Yahoo Groups for ride sharing called The purpose of rideNSC is to connect people who need a ride with people who can offer a ride. So, you can offer a ride or ask for a ride.

It’s simple. When you offer a ride, please state:

  • preferred dates
  • ski areas
  • where you might be staying
  • what the costs will be

Anyone who is part of rideNSC and is interested can respond to you.

To gerideNSCt started, visit the rideNSC group information page. If you have a Yahoo id, then click on Join Group. If you don’t have a Yahoo id, click on the subscribe link.


I am the moderator and will approve (or disapprove) your membership. All members of the Nisei Ski Club can join the group. We ask for standard on-line etiquette. That means you should be “adult-like” in your postings. That means no offensive language or say anything that your mother would not approve of. Therefore, if you are interested in finding some new ski buddies this year, visit rideNSC group and start sending posts to

Questions? Send email to

December 2015 – Discount tickets at Sierra at Tahoe

Sandy Kiyomura
Hey, skiers and boarders! It’s time to head to the mountains. This is the earliest opening in decades for most resorts. I was lucky enough to get a few turns in after Thanksgiving. I skied Squaw one day and Northstar another. Operations were limited but who’s complaining? Just being on the snow made the trip worthwhile. Most likely, by the time you read this, the entire mountain will be open.

I am also the benefits director for BAC and I wanted to let you know that if you don’t have a season’s pass, you might want to consider Sierra at Tahoe. NSC belongs to BAC (Bay Area Council of Snow Sports). BAC has a corporate agreement with Sierra at Tahoe to get discounted tickets (any day, holidays also). As part of NSC, you are entitled to all the benefits of BAC including discounted lift tickets.

Here’s information about the Sierra at Tahoe ticket rates:

Category Regular rate Holiday rate BAC E-ticket rate Comment
Adult $93 $97 $73 22-25% discount
Y-Adult (Age 13-22) $83 $87 $63 22-28% discount
Child $33 $37 N/A
Senior (Age 65-69) $59 $59 N/A Already discounted
Super Senior $35 $35 N/A Already discounted

You can purchase on-line tickets at the Sierra at Tahoe online store

Login (all upper case) CRP-BAC
Password (all upper case) SNOW1940

If you have further questions, contact Ryan Parker. He is our contact person at Sierra at Tahoe:
email address and phone number: 530-543-3134.

Another important feature is that the Adult E-Ticket can be exchanged at the ticket window for the first timer’s introduction to skiing or snowboard package (ages 13 and older). The package includes a 2.5 hour lesson, rental equipment, and a limited access lift ticket ($114-$125 value).

More BAC benefits to NSC members
As I mentioned, NSC belongs to an umbrella organization BAC. (Bay Area Council of Snow Sports). As part of NSC, you are entitled to all the benefits of BAC. That includes discounted lift tickets, racing, and travel. For more information on these benefits, go to

There is an excellent international travel program as well as an annual ski week. This year, BAC is going to Telluride and Cortina for its international trip. I have written an article about racing, and as a member of NSC, you can participate.

If we can get enough people for a race team (maybe 5), then we will need to register in December. I have already registered. Presently, there is no NSC race team, so please contact Sandy Kiyomura if you’re interested.

December 2015 – BAC Racing

Sandy Kiyomura

Did you know that you could ski like a pro? The Bay Area Snow Sports Council (“BAC”) is the umbrella organization that Nisei Ski Club belongs to and has a race league that you can join. The BAC race league is the Open League Race where you will compete with people of your skill level, gender and age. There are 8 races during the season (4 weekends) and you can race in as many of them as you like. Some races are Slalom and others are Giant Slalom.

Here is the web site: Open League Racing Race Schedule. As you can see, there are clinics as well as races. There is a fun race on December 13th at Alpine, where you can race for FREE. This would be a good day to sample the race course. Lift tickets are be $43-$68 (depending on age) and include an $18 lunch voucher!

Here’s some facts about how the league works:

  • What does it cost? $115 for the season. However, the Nisei Ski Club will supplement $25 of your fees.
  • How long does it take to race? There are 3 different times for racers each day. For instance, advanced skiers may be at 10am, Intermediates at 12 noon and Beginners at 2pm. Most of the time, one finishes his/her race in an hour, so you still have plenty of time to ski.
  • How do I know what level I am? In your first race, you will have a time. Depending on your time, they will determine your level (1-10). Levels 1-4 are Advanced, 5-7 are Intermediate and 8-10 are Beginners. If you are very fast, they will “promote” you to the next level.
    Once your level is determined, you will race in that category for the season. If you have 2 strikes (very good times), they will move you up a level.
  • How can I get to the races? Nisei Ski Club has established a Yahoo group for ride sharing and people can car pool. I have been staying at the Apres cabin (since I’m a member) and guests can stay for $25 a night.
  • Why should I race? Three reasons: it’s fun, you get the best snow on the mountain and you will become a better skier.

Questions? Contact me, Sandy Kiyomura at I will be racing for Nisei Ski Club.

Weekend Ski Trip #2. Squaw / Northstar (or Sugar Bowl)

Weekend Ski Trip #2, Mar 11-13, 2016.  Squaw / Northstar (or Sugar Bowl instead)
Sign-Up Deadline: Feb 24, 2016
NSC/BAC Member — $205
Non-member — $215
Departure Times: SJ 6:30 PM, EC 7:45 PM

Sign Up Form (click here)


November 2015 – President’s Message

Armand Gutierrez, NSC President

Are you ready for some skiing this season? If not, then feast your eyes on the photo that was recently taken at a well-known ski resort. Ski Resort Open in OctoberYes, this place is already open for business! Granted, it’s probably a lot of man-made snow mixed in with Mother Nature’s early snowfall, but these people are already skiing (and you’re not). And when do we get our share of the ski season? Well, Northstar and Heavenly are scheduled to open on November 20th, and Squaw Valley on the 25th, subject to weather conditions, of course. Karen Soo is already planning two weekend ski trips so look for details on dates and places in her write-up. It’s been several years since NSC has had a weekend ski trip so it’s muy importante that we get as many signups as we can to ensure that these trips are successful. As an added incentive, the first person to correctly identify the resort in the photo AND signup for the first weekend ski trip will get a free one-day lift ticket. Email your answer to (Board members excluded, deadline is 20 November, and only one answer per person so think carefully).

Snowbomb Ski Shows
It’s not too late to sign up for the San Jose Snowbomb show on Nov 7-8. Greg Wong will be there on Saturday and I’ll be there Sunday afternoon. Entry to the show is free by securing passes at this site: and scroll down and then click on “Purchase Tickets Here” under San Jose. Many thanks to Karen Soo and Curtis Otaguro for attending the SF Snowbomb show.

Park City/Canyons Ski Week 2016
The Park City/Canyons trip is moving along well and we currently have 45 signups. The second payment is due November 10th so be sure to remit your payment if you haven’t already done so. Also, an email was sent out to everyone about a change in our return flight from Salt Lake City. We were scheduled to return at 8:10pm on flight UA5333, and the new schedule is 5:18pm on flight UA5765. For those of you making your own flight arrangements that means you might be able to take the return shuttle bus with the rest of the group.

November 2015 – 35 is Our Magic Number

Karen Soo, Trip Director

Good news, we have finalized the two weekend trips that are scheduled for 2016.

The prices for the bus and the hotel lodging have gone up. We cancelled both weekend trips in 2015 due to lack of snow. Now we have to think positive and hope that we will not cancel our 2 trips for 2016.

We are given early cancellation dates from the bus company and the hotel. If you are interested in going on our weekend trip, SIGN UP EARLY. We will not cash your check until the trip is taken.

We need 35 people to get the bus trip moving, so start asking your friends, co-workers and come on our trips. We will charge you extra if you sign up past the due date.

Discounted Lift Tickets

Did you know that you can get discounted lift ticket if you go skiing on a scheduled BAC race day?  As NSC members, you can go up to the table that is set up by BAC and get a discounted lift tickets.

You don’t have to race, just get there between the hours of 7:00am to 8:00am and tell them you are with Nisei Ski Club. It’s that simple. Please look at the schedule for BAC race dates. There are races scheduled at Alpine Meadows, Northstar, and Sugar Bowl. Link: BAC race schedule.

Editor’s note – check out this October 2015 post on another way to get discounted lift tickets


Trip 1 – January 29 – 31 Heavenly / Heavenly

Trip 2 – March 11 – 13 Squaw / North Star* (* Depending on snow conditions Sugar Bowl)

Snowbomb Ski Shows

Snow Bomb Ski shows are coming to San Francisco – October 31 and November 1st and San Jose on Nov 7 and 8th. Admission is free. You need print out an entrance form. Free lift tickets are included with the Powder Pass or VIP admission fees.

Please refer to the website for more information

 Club Appreciation Day

The Bay Area Snow Sports Council is sponsoring a Club Appreciation Day on Sunday, December 13, 2015. BAC will offer discounted lift tickets. Lunch vouchers and free fun race are included in one price. Detail pricing are still being worked on and will be announced soon. Link: Club Appreciation Day information.

The only obstacle is that we need good snow coverage by December 13 and you have to provide your own transportation. Maybe we can plan a car trip?

Let’s hope we have a fabulous snow season.

Three, Two, One, GO!

Sandy Kiyomura

racing 2015

I am “Vet woman”

This is what you can hear at the starting gate at the top of the race course. BAC (the Bay Area Council of Ski and Snow sports ) has a race league every season. You, as a member of Nisei Ski Club are eligible to race. There will be a free race day on Sunday, December 13 at Alpine Meadows. Discount lift tickets will be available. So if you’re thinking you can’t race, December 13 might be a good day to try. There are ten categories of racers. The “almost pro” racers are level 1 or 2. I’m an “intermediate” level 7. Within each level, there are categories based on gender and age. I am a “Vet woman” (so age has its benefits). When one places first, second, or third in their level/category, points are awarded to the individual as well as the club. There are three types of races: Slalom, Giant Slalom, and Super Slalom. Most skiers will find they are better at one than the others.

Some of the advantages of racing are: you will become a better skier, you will have the best snow on the mountain, you will meet other skiers, and it’s fun. Throughout the season, there are clinics you can participate in. I belong to another ski club and they have a cabin in Kings Beach. On race weekends, they offer not only lodging, but meals for the weekend. It’s like a weekend trip without the bus.

One other advantage is that anyone can get discount tickets on race day if you show up by 8:30 AM where the racers are. Mark your calendar for race days.

You may contact me at: if you have questions.

October 2015 – President’s Message

Armand Gutierrez, NSC President

I’m sure everyone has read about the big El Niño coming this season and that there will be plenty of rain and snowfall. As much as it would be great to think about unprecedented piles of powder in the Tahoe area I’m going to take a wait-and-see posture and see what Mother Nature really brings us. I do believe that Tahoe will get a more-than-normal snowfall and that is most encouraging from the previous years meager snowfall. As such, Karen Soo, our trip director, has already started planning on two weekend ski trips for the season – one trip to South shore and one to North shore. Look for details on dates and places in Karen’s write-up, and although it’s only October, now is the time to start planning for these trips.


Snowbomb Ski Shows

Yes, it’s getting to be that time of year again for the annual Snowbomb Ski Shows. This year the San Francisco show is on Oct 31-Nov 1, and the San Jose show is on Nov 7-8. Last year’s show in San Jose featured numerous vendors from ski resorts and, of course, a humongous ski gear/clothing sale at redonkulous prices. We need volunteers for both of these events so let me know ( if you want to attend, represent NSC, and get in on all the excitement that these ski shows have to offer. You can also coordinate with Karen Soo (


Park City/Canyons Ski Week 2016

The Park City/Canyons trip is moving along well and currently we have 44 signups. If you’re still sitting on the fence about going and haven’t signed up now is the time to do so. Although the second payment isn’t due until November, feel free to send it in now and avoid the November rush.

October 2015 – Godzilla Hitting the Slopes!

Karen Soo, Trip Director

Summer is over. Fall is in the air. Baseball is winding down and football is starting its place on the field. We’re starting to plan our 2016 weekend bus trips.

We have 44 NSC members on the 2016 Park City weeklong trip. Most of the participants have the Epic Season Pass which is good for Park City and Heavenly/ Northstar. To coincide with the season pass, we will plan the first trip to South Shore.


Trip 1 – January 29 – 31 Heavenly / Heavenly* / Kirkwood* (*TBA)

Trip 2 – March 11 – 13 North Shore (Resorts TBA)

Parking wanted

Parking at Fourth Street Bowl and State Farm on N First Street is no longer available for us. We are looking for weekend parking for our weekend trips. If you work for a company in San Jose near 880 and have weekend parking available, let me know. Otherwise, we will be parking at one of the Cal Trans lots in San Jose.


Snow Bomb Ski shows are coming to San Francisco – October 31 and November 1st and San Jose on November 7 and 8th. Admission is free. Free lift tickets are included with the Powder Pass or VIP admission fees.

Please refer to the Snowbomb website for more information: link to Snowbomb website

If you like to come out and volunteer at the BAC booth and represent Nisei Ski Club, please email Karen Soo at


The Bay Area Snow Sports Council is sponsoring a Club Appreciation Day on Sunday, December 13, 2015. BAC will offer discounted lift tickets. Lunch vouchers and free fun race are included in one price. Detail pricing are still being worked on and will be announced soon.

The only obstacle is that we need good snow coverage by December 13 and you have to provide your own transportation. Maybe we can plan a car trip?

Let’s hope we have a fabulous snow season.

godzillaGodzilla El Niño year is on the horizon. RRAAAHHHH!


How to Get Discount Lift Tickets

Sandy Kiyomura

In August, BAC sponsored a fundraiser for Disabled Sports USA. I attended the Oakland A’s game and tailgate party and had a great time (although the A’s lost) and watched the Star Trek fireworks show afterwards. During the tailgate party, I purchased raffle tickets and won a back pack and other small gifts. Another raffle was for a California Gold Pass. This pass allows the holder to ski at most California resorts any day. It is also transferable, which means anyone else may use it (once a day). Well, I had a lucky day.

While I was hiking Machu Picchu in Peru, I received notice that I had won the California Gold Pass! (worth $2,000). This means that I (or anyone I lend the pass to) may ski for free (holidays and weekends too).

Since I have already purchased a Squaw/Alpine pass as well as a Northstar/Heavenly pass, I will “rent” out my card, with proceeds going back to Disabled Sports USA. If you would like to ski for a reduced rate, contact me at Rates will be $60 weekdays, $75 weekends and holidays. Preference will be given to longer rental periods.


While in Machu Picchu, I learned that I won the California Gold Pass!