Monday, August 1, 2011
I had a chance to visit Squaw Valley twice this year, the first time in late March, a week after a huge snow storm covered the valley in 72 inches of snow. The second time in Mid-July. Squaw Valley is located about thirty miles north of Lake Tahoe and south of Truckee off of Interstate 80.
In winter it is a skiers paradise, Squaw Valley can get up to 500 inches of snow in a season; in summer outdoor enthusiast can take advantage of the many lakes, hiking trails, horseback riding, off-roading and other activities.
When I was there last March I was working with a clothing company that was shooting their winter catalogue. The company took full advantage of the ski resorts many locations, including shooting on the cable car to the top of the mountain, the village with its many high end boutiques and restaurants. The parking lot is huge and the staff allowed me to park my motor home close to set, next to the village. My biggest concern was the weather, Squaw Valley can get snow anytime between September and June. In California all large vehicles must always carry chains with them year round, subsequently I always carry chains with me in my basement of my motor home just in case the need arises.
The great advantage about Squaw Valley is the number of lodges, therefore finding a place to house your crew will not be a problem. Tahoe City is about seven miles south of Squaw Valley, there one will find a Safeway, several gas stations that sell diesel and gasoline, restaurants, a movie theatre plus more. In the town of Truckee there is a dump station, that also sells gas and diesel fuel (Donner Lake Chevron 530-587-6022).
In the summer car shoots film around Lake Tahoe because of the scenery and of course the lake. I almost learned the hard way, highway 89-South and North; if off limit to vehicles over forty-five feet long. There are five switchback turns near Emerald Bay that are very difficult to navigate in a tractor trailer. Take highway 28 east around the lake, then take highway 50 west to the city of Lake Tahoe, this will take you back to highway 89. This will add an additional hour to the commute, however the route is easier to access in a large vehicle and the view of the lake is incredible. There are some vintage casinos off of highway 28, so if you need one this is the perfect road to find one.
If you are interested in shooting in Lake Tahoe (Placer County) you can call Beverly Lewis (Film Office Director) at 877.228.3456 and she can assist you with your location needs and film permits. If you ever need an RV call me Mike Green at 415.730.7127.