SF BAY AREA SACRAMENTO LAKE TAHOE Ride-Share / Carpool
- Founded in 1999, SnowPals.org is the largest snow sports community in the US Pacific West Coast serving the SF Bay Area / Lake Tahoe area and visitors to the region. Are you driving to Tahoe with mostly empty seats? Offer a ride, share trip expense, expand your circle of ski and ride buddies in addition to helping to reduce your carbon footprint in the process.
- Join us to celebrate our 25th winter season as an engaging Tahoe ride-share community to pool resources for fun Tahoe ski and ride trips (see a screenshot of members’ forum messages for Tahoe ride-share) and trips to other snow destinations for those who have a multi resort season pass such as the IKON Pass, Epic Pass, Powder Alliance Pass and Mountain Collective Pass; see screenshot of Epic, Ikon resorts ski, ride trips posted to the members’ forum.
- Connect with 8k+ Skiers and Snowboarders for trips from the San Francisco Bay Area to and from Lake Tahoe and to other snow destinations especially once you have become fast friends (Utah, Colorado, British Columbia, Argentina, Australia, Europe, Japan, etc.)
- Expand your circle of ski and ride buddies for resort skiing and snowboarding or head for the backcountry and have the safety of a wing man or woman to stay safe.
- Most notably, SnowPals’ ride-share is a no service fee ride-share alternative to Uber, Lyft and other ride-sharing services which charges you a service fee for every ride you take.
Yup, you know the story, after college, once settled in with a professional career, our circle of friends and activity partners become smaller by each passing year unless effort is made to reach out and connect with people who share common interests; well, here’s your chance. 😉 – join us!
SnowPals is the place where you can offer rides OR find and receive rides between the SF Bay Area and Tahoe, day trip, overnight or multiple nights. Our members are serious snow-sport enthusiasts. With over 8k member’s list of skiers and snowboarders, there is always someone driving the three to four hours haul to and from Tahoe and the SF Bay Area seven days a week since we have among us college students as well as retirees or those who work a non-regular schedule (chefs, digital nomads, etc). Read about some of our members’ via their self-introductions.
We’ve been encouraging and facilitating ride-share and carpool between the Bay Area and Tahoe since 1999. Help us grow by sharing SnowPals.org with friends and family. Advance thanks!
Frequently Asked Question:
Q: Who are your behind the scene crew/people who helps manage and run SnowPals?
Here are some of the stuff our members have been doing:
1) Passengers and driver barter/arrange an exchange agreement, ie. ride to Tahoe for free night stay at cabin/ski lease as a guest.
2) Passengers and driver pool resources to rent a ski cabin and share expenses equally.
3) Network with other Bay Area professionals. Beginner skiers/boarders get advice tips and advice from experts.
4) Connect with members who are part of a ski lease and you’re likely to get invited to stay as a guest.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: I live in Monterey/Santa Cruz/Sacramento/Davis/Roseville/Stockton/Central Valley California, are there Bay Area members who can give me rides to Tahoe?
A: Yes, if you live along the route to North Lake Tahoe, South Lake Tahoe, Sierra Nevada ski resorts, you can find rides since members stop along the route for a pitstop/to pick-up passengers on the way to Tahoe or other high Sierra resorts.
Q: Do you have ski/board families? We are a skiing/snowboarding family and would like to meet other families who frequent Tahoe often to share snow sports experiences to give kids opportunities to meet new ski/ride friends to make the experience more fun.
A: Yes, many of our members have kids and would also like to connect with other families to enjoy snow-sports together; often-times they also share a ski cabin as well to reduce their snow sports expenses. Many of others members got married and became parents over the years so naturally they would like to connect with other like-minded parents.
Q: I mainly do backcountry skiing/boarding, are there backcountry skiers/riders in the group?
A: Yes, we have many members who are backcountry skiers at various levels from beginners to expert touring level.
Q: I want to find folks for Nordic skiing/cross-country skiing and snowshoeing; are there members who engage in Nordic type snow sports?
A: Yes, we have members who cross train and who enjoys Nordic skiing/snowshoeing; a favorite destination is Lake Tahoe area’s backcountry trails, in addition, many often go to Yosemite National Park to not only engage in snow sports but to engage in winter snow photography and to enjoy off the beaten path Nordic skiing adventures.
We encourage SF Bay Area residents to pool resources to ride share/carpool to Tahoe resorts to reduce carbon footprint impact to our environment; join our yearly Ski Season Kickoff Parties throughout the SF Bay Area to meet snow sports folks in person; details at:
We invite businesses to partner with us to help bring awareness to our ride-sharing offerings, and to encourage people who might otherwise drive separately to use our community rideshare network to reduce their carbon footprint and expand their circle of friends in the process.
Individually we each can make slight carbon footprint reductions, however, together we can make significant reductions that will help preserve our natural environment for us and for future generations to enjoy. Consider partnering with SnowPals and we will gladly help your business to increase your business’ visibility. Please contact if you’d like to partner with SnowPals.
Going strong for our 21st year, we have not had any bad experiences reported for ride-sharing.
To keep everyone honest and on his/her best behavior and to encourage mutual respect, we use a blacklist (maintained by members’ feedback) for anyone who breaks agreements or acts inappropriately. To maintain the integrity of ride-shares, a ride-share commitment is an agreement between passenger(s) and driver(s).
Be mindful that oftentimes, folks plan a trip in advance and count on being able to go on a trip and if the plan falls apart due to a lack of respect and consideration, his/her trip is ruined. Please cultivate mutual respect, trust and consideration which help to make the experience rewarding and memorable for all. Chances are you’ll will likely form some lasting ride-share buddies and friendships in the process.
Tahoe Ride-Share Guide, Rules and Etiquette:
Preface: SnowPals treat Tahoe ride-share agreements as binding contracts to be honored by both parties, driver and passenger(s) since both invest significant time and effort into planning a Tahoe trip and being able to make the Tahoe ride-share arrangement successful.
We highly suggest it is best to communicate by phone conversation then follow up with a written confirmation by text or email to confirm and to avoid misunderstandings or poor communication.
As a general rule, try to plan trips as far ahead as possible; last minute trip will tend to be a recipe for frustrations if specifics aren’t mutually agreed upon and clearly communicated/confirmed. Remember the shared goal is to get to Tahoe to enjoy a fun filled day of snow-sports; you can make it go smoothly by planning ahead and by communicating clearly from the start 😉
(1) Host driver and riders/passengers exchange contact information. As an added safety measure, we suggest that drivers and passengers request to add each other as friends on facebook prior to the trip and/or exchange Linkedin info.
For first time rideshares (for safety purposes) we suggest driver and passengers exchange business cards and/or take a photo of driver’s license with your driver/passengers; exchange phone numbers and emergency contacts info. Share with family/friends your trip plan/agenda; who you are going with/who to call, and when to expect your return.
(2) Host drivers: state clearly how much the rideshare will cost in advance. Drivers have the discretion to set cost sharing. Also state clearly your preference for passengers, ie. non-smoker, especially ‘no smoking inside the car’; your preference in music, etc. Also, when posting a ride share offer, please include how much space you have for skis, snowboard and gear, personal backpack/luggage, etc. If you have a ski/snowboard rack, the type of car you are driving, ie. AWD Subaru Forester, 4WD Jeep, Ford sedan, etc. Key info to specify are so that it will save you from having to extra time to reply to emails from folks who are interested but would like to find out more about your trip details; be sure to include:
a) your departure point and driving route from Bay Area to Tahoe, and
b) your ski resort destination in Tahoe
c) be sure to include a phone number in your ride-share post so you can quickly receive replies from people who are interested in joining
(3) Passengers: be aware that aside from the cost of gas, other non-tangible factors to consider: a) driver’s experience/skill driving in snow/icy road conditions b) the wear, tear and mileage on the driver’s car, c) oftentimes, the driver goes out of his/her way to pick you up and drop you off.
(4) Passengers: be sure to thank your driver (just common courtesy). Offer to drive if your driver is tired. If you brought some snacks, offer your driver some as a way to say thanks. Try to be flexible and easy going – it’s all about having a successful ride-share to Tahoe and a great day on the slopes. State your preference in regards to either skiing or riding together once you get to the resort or going solo and meeting up at a designated meeting point and time afterwards. Remember to set a meetup point if you go separate ways. Agree on what to do in case of an emergency ~ exchange phone numbers, names, etc. (ie. in case someone gets hurt on the slopes, plan ahead on a course of action).
(5) Remember to have a fully charged mobile phone; enter the numbers of your ride-share party/driver and emergency contact names and numbers. Buy a back-up battery pack and make sure it’s fully charged so you can use in case your cell phone is out of battery.
Tahoe Rideshare / Carpool FAQ
* How do I get on the ride-share list or connect with others nearby for ski/ride trips?
If you are not already a member, join SnowPals to read the latest Tahoe ride-share trip requests and/or post yours.
* How much is the ride-share fee/cost?
The shared cost varies depending on the driver and his/her car and the gas and toll expenses. Each driver determines cost for the trip.
* How late can I RSVP / Change my RSVP for a ride-share?
Members have 24 hours prior to the trip to change their RSVP for any reason. If a passenger change his/her RSVP with less than 24 hours’ notice or are a no-show at the time of the ride-share, he/she would still be responsible to pay the ride-share fee agreed upon since the driver has committed his/her time and vehicle, and he/she would have had to deny others that could have had the opportunity to join the ride-share.
We highly recommend drivers to request passenger(s) to RSVP for a spot in the car with a either a non-refundable deposit or pre-payment RSVP via Paypal.com, Venmo.com or similar payment service with these terms added as part of the payment request.
Passengers must abide by these terms which should be clearly communicated at the time a rideshare is mutually agreed upon. In addition, drivers must commit to drive as specified on the date, time and agreed meetup location. Drivers who flake with less than 24 hours notice will be banned from SnowPals rideshare contact list. It’s at the driver’s discretion to use the above tips or not, and to allow for legitimate emergency exceptions when it is deemed valid. To report a passenger or driver who breaks an agreement, and forward email details of correspondences and the details of the rideshare agreement and what exactly happened. Both parties will have a chance to explain in detail of what happened and to provide evidence to support their case so we can determined whether to ban/blacklist the person who have broken the rideshare agreement.
Is there a No-Show policy?
Yes! SnowPals have a three strikes rule. After your third no show you will be automatically removed from the group (strictly enforced). In addition, for every no show, you are responsible to pay for the ride you had RSVPed for. Be mindful that ride-sharing is a two way commitment for passengers and drivers. Please be respectful and considerate; it makes the experience rewarding and memorable for all and chances are you are likely to cultivate some reliable ride-share buddies and lasting friendships in the process. To report a passenger or driver who broke an agreement, and forward email details of correspondences and the details of the ride-share agreement and what exactly happened.
There are two ways to connect for Tahoe ride-sharing:
- Join SnowPals’ forum to post a Tahoe ride share/carpool/Tahoe trip request or rideshare offer
- Or participate in our fun events to meet folks in-person for Tahoe trips/rideshares
RideShare Offer Posting Template
After joining the group, whenever you post a rideshare offer, please use the following template; be sure to include the following key information in your posting for efficient ride-share coordination..
- For your subject line, state the:
1) Trip DATE(S),
2) Departure time,
3) RideShare START and Destination END POINT (NAME OF THE TAHOE SKI RESORT)
Here’s an example of what to write in the rideshare subject line: “Saturday 2/18, 5am, Berkeley to Squaw/Alpine”
- In the body of your post, include: First name
- M or F (this oftentimes matter especially for gals who wants to rideshare with other gals if she is trying out ridesharing for the 1st time and have a preference)
- Departure time and location (city); pick up at Bart, Caltrains, a Park n Ride location or coordinate specifics; are you willing to pick up folks along your route to Tahoe? ie.. 101 -> 237 -> 680 -> 80
- Do you have space in your car for snowboards, skis, gear, backpack, etc.
- How many passengers can comfortably ride-share in your car?
- Cost (filled out by the driver)
- Ski or board? skill level? (if skiing or riding together)
- Day trip or overnight (share lodging, stay as a guest in a ski lease, etc.)
- For quick responses, remember to include a contact phone number: best to call or text?
- As a safety measure, include a link to your Facebook to share face pics/get friended and/or share your Linkedin URL link
Too often, people do not include sufficient information that is important for ride-share planning and coordination which result in numerous inquiry emails back and forth which will take up alot of your time.
Please refer to the above ride-share posting template whenever you post a rideshare in our members forum.
Below are some excerpts of ride-share offers and requests to give you an idea of how active and useful SnowPals’ RideShare can be (contact information have been removed):
(Scroll down to read more)
Here’s a detailed listing:
“Hello Fellow Snow Enthusiasts!
I’m doing a day trip to Kirkwood this Saturday. I’m looking for a couple passengers.
When: Saturday December 3rd.
Starting: I leave San Francisco around 4:30AM.
Arrival: I hope to get to Kirkwood around 8:30AM
Return: Leave Kirkwood around 3:00PM and hope to return to SF around 7:30PM
Cost: The trip cost is the cost of gas split evenly among everyone in the truck; usually around $15 per person (has been as low as $12 and as high as $25) depending on road conditions (4WD eats up more gas, being stuck in traffic too…but I anticipate good road conditions). (plus the cost of your lift ticket or pass of course)
Pick Up: I leave from Cole Valley and am willing to pick up people at convenient meeting spots along my way leaving the city and along the way leaving the Bay Area (I usually pick up others off of 580 or 24).
Me: I’m an expert Skier and a beginner to intermediate snowboarder, my friend is an expert snowboarder.
You: any skill level…ski/ride with me or on your own, engage in conversations with me and the other passengers or sleep all the way up and back. Just be punctual and chip in for gas.
If you’re interested or have any questions let me know.”
More listing excerpts:
1) Day Trip to Sierra this Tuesday 12/8
Anyone up for a powder day up at Sierra this Tuesday? I’m flexible and willing to leave any time to accommodate. Please send a reply.
Page down to read more excerpts of ride-share offers.
The above are just general guidelines to get you started on setting up a successful ride-share. SnowPals hope you’ll meet some fun members in the group, and perhaps expand your circle of ski and snowboarding friends in the process. Happy ridesharing! Help SnowPals grow, tell people on the ski lifts and your family and friends on facebook about us. If you have some suggestions to improve our rideshare process, please .
Excerpts of actual ride-share/carpool offers:
2) Ride Offered Tuesday morning, returning Wednesday afternoon.
I’m heading up to Alpine tomorrow morning sometime (I just need to get to Alpine before 4:00pm) and returning on Wednesday afternoon. I’ll be leaving Alpine at 1:00pm sharp to be back on the Peninsula before a 6:00pm meeting. If either side of this commute works for you and you aren’t too far out of my way, let me know.
3) Shred Boreal or anywhere if you have passes Tuesday the 8th
I’m thinking about heading up for all the fresh pow anyone want to split gas and come along for the adventure? I have room for 3+gear. I’m a snowboarder and am thinking about going to Boreal from 9am to 9pm I live in vallejo.
4) Day trip/ride to Northstar or Heavenly on Sat, 12/12
Hi everyone, I am planning a one day ski trip on 12/12 to Northstar at Tahoe or Heavenly. Leaving earlier in the morning and coming back the same day. If you are planning the same trip, I would be happy to share ride, gas and even skiing on the slopes. I can ski pretty much everything blue, red, black, double black..
Instead of the gas contribution, I can also give you a Northstar or Heavenly lift ticket for $25-$30 less. I have two with me now. Alternatively, I can pay cash for gas and try to sell the extra ticket.
Shortly about me: I am young professional, work in the financial district and love to have fun! Originally from Europe, now enjoying CA.
I can meet pretty much everywhere in the bay area. Thanks.
5) Day trip or overnight trip rideshare offered
Day trip or two to any of the following: heavenly, boreal, sugar bowl, bear valley, etc. from the south bay if possible. Avid is better. Tell me something about you and leave me your contact info, email or #, friend me on FB or send LinkedIn contact, thanks – Jen
6) Anyone going to be at Northstar Monday or Tuesday?
I’ll be heading up from Sacramento Monday early morning, then staying until Tuesday.
Not sure if anyone can use Monday morning as a ride share opportunity, return I’m not even sure time or if I’m really coming back Tuesday.
If your at Northstar thoes days, I’ll probably be the only ski-biker there, so come say Hi. I’d be nice to meet new folks. – Larry
7) Rideshare from SF to North Lake Tahoe (NLT) – March 12 / 13
Hi, I will drive to North Lake Tahoe on Saturday morning [departure: ~ 5am] and come back to San Francisco on Sunday night. I may have a place for you to stay overnight. Let me know if interested…Claire
8) Split costs to stay at Squaw?
I want to start this season off in relative comfort and limited driving. Thinking about reserving a place at the Squaw Valley Lodge. Anyone feel like splitting costs for a spot at the base of KT? I’m thinking about going up sometime between the Dec. 16th and 25th for as many as 5 days. If we split it 3 ways, that’s just around three hundred each. Or, the other option is you have a place close to Squaw already and I can pay guest fees? Could use a ride or will give a ride (only have room for one with gear). Female intermediate/advanced snowboarder. Fun as hell. -Joanna
If you are not already a member, join Snowpals to read the latest Tahoe ride-share trip requests and or post yours.
Attend our Monthly Mixers to connect with members in-person for Tahoe Rideshares.
If you’re shy about getting and giving rides with people you haven’t met, then come to our social gatherings. Meet skiers and snowboarders face to face, learn more about what drives each person and share stories before connecting for Tahoe trips.
RSVP for our upcoming mixers at www.snowpals.org/events
Would you like to help with our social gatherings?
Please drop us a line at if you’d like to help out with SnowPals’ social gatherings near you. We usually arrange Happy Hour in SF, Berkeley and the South Bay. We’re looking to hold mixers in the North Bay, Peninsula and Tahoe Apres ski events soon. Help out and get perks such as free event entry (for members’ only events), extra event raffle tickets, free gift card, lift tickets, etc. 🙂