Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Adventure Mountain - The Most Popular Tubing/Sledding Destination in South Lake Tahoe

 *Base Elevation:
7,400 Feet at the top of Echo Summit

*40 Acres

*Up to 18 Machine Groomed Sledding/Tubing Lanes
(dependent on snowfall)

Nebelhorn, Hwy 50 Echo Summit 
South Lake Tahoe, CA 96155

(530) 659-7217

I grew up in San Diego and my idea of the perfect winter involved beaches, whale watching, and winter sunsets.  After moving to Reno seven years ago, I found a new way of celebrating winter with another world that opened up- a world of wonder, beauty, fluffy snow, interesting icicles, snowmen & snowballs- and it was only then that I understood what a real winter was about.

Dashing through the snow on a sled with kids screaming with glee is a sight and sound  I could only have imagined in the past while listening to Christmas music.  It was when I first visited Adventure Mountain with my family that I got to truly experience the bliss that is found in snow sledding and tubing. 

Crisp mountain air hitting my face, zooming down on groomed winter slides with the family, while witnessing mother nature's spectacular views, was something I was not accustomed to and me and my family couldn't get enough.

If you haven't been snow tubing and sledding, I think everyone should try it out at least once in their lifetimes and Adventure Mountain is the perfect place for these experiences.  


When to Visit
-Adventure Mountain can get super busy and fill up fast (about 100 parking spots), so getting there super early is crucial in landing a spot.  I got there 20 min before opening and there were 10 cars ahead of me.  

Weekends, and around the time they open for the season (usually when snow arrives) is a really busy time for them.  

If the road is blocked off at their entrance, they are at capacity.  They will then open every hour to let more people in, but access is not guaranteed.  It can be tricky on busy days, as there is nowhere to stand-by if the roads are blocked off.  Highway 50 is a super busy road.  Always have a backup plan if you are unable to get in.  Tube Tahoe is close by, if you're out of luck. 

Weather & Roads
-before making a trip out, check to see that the roads are clear of snow
-I like to check Accuweather to look ahead and make sure the weather is appropriate for outdoor activities.  Generally, me and my family like to go out in 40+weather with no wind.  No freezing on this mom's watch. 
Waterproof snow gear is essential in keeping you dry

Adventure Mountain Details
-they don't have a magic carpet, so be prepared to walk up
-The number of runs depends on availability of snow.  They depend on natural snowfall 
-They have slopes for different skill levels. The runs right next to the cabin are more gentle, suitable for kids.  The ones on the right are more steep
-you assume the risk for injury when paying for entrance to Adventure Mountain.  They will give you a list of rules upon entry.
-Check website for current rates.  They charge per-vehicle fees depending on the time you're visiting (holidays and weekends cost more) and how many people are in the vehicle.
-you can bring your own sleds and tubes (metal and wood not allowed)
-tubes, two person sleds, and helmets available for rent with deposit
-there are plenty of spaces on the side for snow play
-you're free to venture off and snowshoe
Check their site to see current status of lodge
-this is the best deal for what you pay. Other places charge much more per-person fees and only allow their gear (for an extra fee),  though other places might have extra workers to help assist.
-porta potties available. With the amount of people using them, it might not be favorable to use them.  I always bring my own portable potty and liners for my three kids everywhere I go.
-the have a small shop just in case you need essential gear like snow boots, gloves, beanies. 
They have a couple of picnic tables outside the lodge next to the rental area.  Due to the pandemic, most people I see eat in their cars or tailgates with lawn chairs.
-Kids under 42'' and six years old must be accompanied by an adult

Tube or Sled?
-for more control and comfort, the tube is the best option.  You can also swirl down (when spun at the top).  Buying a good quality tube is crucial if you want to avoid popping, which is common with inflatable tubes made from thin plastic.  Tubes are my family's choice due to the ease of use and security when riding with our little ones.
-sleds come in all shapes and sizes.  Adventure Mountain has a two-person sled for rent.  You can really zip down the mountain at fast speeds but have little control with steering. 
-you can only find out what you prefer by trying both. Regardless of what you choose, both are good at helping create fun times down the slopes. 

 Tips for Tubing with Little Ones
-If you're planning a trip with little ones, check out this travel mom's tips for gear, planning, and much more

Covid Safety
-If you're worried about Covid, I would avoid busy days like holidays and weekends.  There are simply lots of people that cannot all be reached with their bullhorn.  You will find some people with their masks not being worn correctly.  Some slopes on the faster side are steep at the top, with little space for social distancing. 

Nearby Trips
-if you're looking for another short road trip nearby, BOA Vista Orchards, a family favorite, is open year-round and all of the other Apple Hill farms open during Fall. One hour away.  An ideal place for picnics, apple goods, and drinks like cider and wine.

-On A Budget?  No Problem.
There are plenty of areas around Lake Tahoe that are open to the public free of charge, and this YouTuber, Gabriella, made a video showing where they're located.
-Tube Tahoe is more kid-friendly, with slopes more on the gentle side.  They don't accommodate as many people as Adventure Mountain, so there will be more space to move around.

Cetegorized Under "Outfoor Winter Activities" and "Lake Tahoe"

©Katherine Fung,
All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, March 13, 2021

Animal Ark- A wildlife Sanctuary with Beautiful Animals and Beautiful Grounds

1265 Deerlodge Rd, Reno, NV 89508

-The Ark has limited hours during winter and opens fully in April–October. 
Call to double-check before making a trip out.


As of 4.2021

• $14.00 for adults
• $12.00 for seniors (62+)
• $9.00 for children (3-12)
• Free for children ages 2 and under

Animal ark is a 38-acre-wildlife sanctuary that shelter animals that may be disadvantaged, disabled, orphaned, or unwanted.  The sanctuary can be found about 30 minutes north from downtown Reno in the beautiful foothills of Red Rock, NV.  

The animals are given plenty of space and, with great care from workers/volunteers, can live their lives in a nice and safe environment surrounded by love.  

During every visit, I came across knowledgeable workers/volunteers that were eager to educate and witnessed their great relationships with the animals.

The ark is active in providing resources and an environment for the community to learn about wildlife, including educational videos and field trip opportunities.

The Ark hosts special events throughout the year that are enjoyed by many, including: the Stampede Mile-Marathon, Cheetah Run, pumpkin treat giving during fall, summer camp for kids, holiday events, and breakfast buffets.

Animal Ark is on my list of top ten places that help make Reno the "Biggest Little City."  I am thankful for their efforts in helping animals, educating the community, & providing beautiful grounds and events for a good time. 

When to Visit
-During summer it can get hot. Visit early morning to beat the heat and see the animals at the most active time of the day.  Animals like to take shelter and sleep during hot parts of the day. 
-you can witness feedings in the morning. Call for schedule. 
-If visiting in the summer, a water bottle, hat and sunscreen is a must
-sometimes you can see baby animals in spring. call to check for details
-on occasion, they have a food truck parked out front (special events and summer)
-The Ark has limited hours during winter and opens fully April–October. Call to double-check before making a trip out

-don't forget to check the weather ahead of time so you can dress accordingly. It can get windy and cold
-pathways can get muddy when wet so don't forget to wear proper footwear

-They are taking the necessary steps to ensure the safety of their visitors: one-way flow of traffic, social distancing in lobby, mask-wearing, and enforcement

-I always sign up as a member as I am able to visit the Ark with my family year-round, see & support the animals, and get some exercise and fresh air. 
-You can become a member, adopt an animal, and/or make donations to help with costs to care for and feed the animals. 

-love animals? Want to gain experience for a career working with them? Want to help out the community?  The Ark is a great environment for volunteer opportunities

-They have a nice and open place with more of a natural setting as opposed to a traditional zoo
-about one mile of walkways
-the path leading up to their parking lot is made of dirt
-there's one section with a little hill
-Interpretive signs
-Beautiful grounds with lots of plants to look at
-they have a nice playground next to their parking lot with picnic tables nearby

-they have docents throughout the day if you have any questions about the animals
-animals include but not limited to: bears, wolves, owls, turtles, raccoons, cheetahs, birds of prey.  Check out the Ark website for their stories. 

Getting Around
-before the pandemic, they offered golf carts for those who need more help getting around.  Please call to check for availability
-a jogging stroller does great on their paths

-They have a nice gift shop that has jewelry, clothes, toys, books, various souvenirs, and snacks and drinks.

-no pets allowed. service animals welcome

Categorized Under "Outdoor Attractions" and "Museums & Zoos"

©Katherine Fung,
All Rights Reserved.

Friday, March 12, 2021

Perenn Bakery - Take your Taste Buds Abroad to Paris Eating the Finest Pastries in Town

20 St Lawrence Ave, Reno, NV 89509

New location-The Village at Rancharra(gorgeous)
7700 Rancharrah Pkwy, Ste 110, Reno, NV 89511
Updated post to come

I've been trying to come up with a line to start this review, but I'm having a hard time, so I figured, why not put all of them.

1.  Why am I only finding out about this bakery just now?
2.  It's places like Perenn that make me so proud of Reno and it's movement toward Foodie Heaven.
3.  When typing "best bakeries in Reno" on Google, why doesn't Perenn Bakery pop up?  Turns out that there's room for Google to improve.
4. You need to visit this bakery right now!
5.  Want to treat yourself or someone you love? This is the place to go.
6.  Perenn Bakery brings you the whole experience, exciting all the senses, with super fresh, gorgeous hand-crafted pastries and breads, a fancy & charming rustic bakery seating out in front, and, most importantly, unique and beyond delicious-tasting food.

They're even staying in the game with every other aspect of business, including social media, online ordering & bulk ordering, and catering. Ordering opens at 2pm (closing time) for next-day pick-up. At pick-up, no need to wait in line, just let them know.

Perenn has a professional website, gorgeous, drool-worthy photos on Instagram, check in with their guests regarding opinions, offer giveaways, and keep close ties with the holidays/seasons, offering holiday/seasonal-themed goodies and meal kits.

Their pastries alone will win me over and everything else is the big fat cherry on top, which is much appreciated.

As I'm typing this review, I'm on their site adding items into my cart for pick-up tomorrow curbside.  

Have you watched LOST?  Do you know that line where Jack tells Kate, "We need to go back! (to the island)"  That's how I felt when I had my last bite of Prosciutto & Gruyere Croissant.  Luckily, I know how to go back, which is what I'm doing first thing in the morning.

-local business that uses local, high quality ingredients
-If you are a butter lover, you will be a Perenn lover
-vegetarian friendly, not gluten free friendly. Breads are dairy free.
-priced a little more than the usual but totally worth it due to the best quality ingredients and just the best tasting food.
-The kind female worker with the beanie that boxed my pastries was down-to-earth friendly and answered my questions patiently. Cashier was also super friendly.
-don't forget to join their rewards program. Free croissant? That's a steal.
-They have the fanciest pastry box ever.
-There was a guy behind me that knew this was my first visit and told straight-up how I was 100% going to enjoy the pastries.  Yes, their pastries will get you raving to customers right in the same building.
-The chocolate croissant will get you talking in a French accent.  Quality chocolate. Flaky and well balanced.
-They bake everything fresh daily, so come early if you want to get a chance to taste their best-selling pastries or order online ahead of time.
-Their flaky croissants can get a little messy, so If you're trying to eat them in the car, best put a box right below.
-Fancy food calls for fancy drinks and chips.  Yes, they have them. Coffee, chips and assorted sparkling beverages available (Aura Bora is a unique brand that has flavors like cactus rose, lavender cucumber- no sugar)
-They sell merch.
-Midtown is not the best with parking, but there are spaces out in front across the street and nearby neighborhood parking available
-boulangerie/viennoiserie-type bakery-that means lots of milk & butter and in-house baguettes. Yes, they're fancy enough for these fancy classifications.
-If someone gave me a gift card to Perenn Bakery, this would be the only time I would share my pastry, and it would be with them. Gift Cards available in store and online.
-OMG for Avocado Toast!!! I never say OMG, but will make an exception for their toast. Bread-perfection, avocado-perfection, toppings perfection! Just the right balance with fats, acids, starches and magic.
-my last visit, I went for another box (6 minimum) to try all the other goodies. And every.single.pastry.was.bomb! Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookie, Chocolate Croissant, Cinnamon roll, Kouign- Amann, Cardamom Twist, Earl Grey cookie.  Yum in every single bite from start to finish.
-I saw a tub of cookie dough in their drink case.
-you can buy a jar of their homemade chili crunch and everything else on their website.

I am now on a mission to try every single item at this magical bakery.  Do you have a favorite bakery in Reno?  I am always ready to try new things. 

Categorized Under "Good Eats"

©Katherine Fung,
All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, March 11, 2021

Krispy Kreme Grand Opening in the Sparks-Reno Area

Attention all Krispy Kreme Fanatics
Yes, your doughnut wishes have been answered. A new location in the Reno-Sparks area will be opening soon!

75 Los Altos Pkwy, Sparks, NV 89436

Grand Opening:
March 16, 2021
March 21: Krispy Kreme will randomly surprise 120 guests with a "Celebration Dozen Ticket" that provides one free dozen original glazed donuts every month for a year.

Monday-Sunday from 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m
Drive-thru will open at 5:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily

It's no secret how amazing Krispy Kreme donuts are, but if you are one of the very few that have not yet had a piece of this heavenly donut, you are in for a treat.

Seven reasons you must try a Krispy Kreme Doughnut:

1. Taste
When you have a perfect-tasting doughnut, is there any other reason to not get one?

2. Freshness
They make their doughnuts in-house on the daily. If you want to see with your own eyes, they have a window for viewing the whole process. Yes, they have nothing to hide. They flaunt their feathers like a peacock.

3. Coffee
If you have perfect doughnuts, why wouldn't you have a good cup of coffee to go with it? Ethically sourced coffee is a plus.

4. History
The company started in 1937. Food tastes better, aged with experience.

5. Nostalgia
Krispy Kreme sparks nostalgia for the "good old days," when life was more simple and enjoying a doughnut was done every morning with a neighborhood friend on the front porch.
A lof of their charm comes from their branding; everything has been kept true to its history. Until today, Krispy Kreme has been using the same logo it first began using in 1955 and every shop is modeled in an old-fashioned "diner" kind of way.

6. Variety
Krispy Kreme is constantly switching up their flavors according to season and trends. Though I can happily eat their classic hit everyday (their glazed doughnut), people that seek different options will appreciate their effort.

7. Convenience
Open super early and open late night with a drive-thru available.

*If you haven't heard yet, Doughboy's Donuts is a local favorite, including this local. Located in South Reno at 57 Damonte Ranch Pkwy, Reno, NV 89521. Krispy Kreme sparked my love for doughnuts and Doughboys kept that love going.
*Krispy Kreme helps out the community with fundraising opportunities. For the pandemic, they've made it possible to raise funds in a contact-free and digital manner. Visit their website for more details.
*If you're adventurous, try making a burger using one of their doughnuts as a bun.
*Krispy Kreme doughnuts pair well with In-N-Out burgers. Yes, I'm not surprised either!

Categorized under News and Announcements

Friday, March 5, 2021

Tube Tahoe - Stunning Views, Fresh Air, and A Tubular Time

Two not so steep lanes (left) and  two steeper lanes (on right with orange netting)
Tube Tahoe was born during the pandemic, aiming to supply a fun spot for everyone to safely have fun outdoors.

(530) 600-2304
*Liability Waiver Form (save some time and fill out before your visit)

Business Snapshot
Tube Tahoe is a family-friendly tubing business in South Lake Tahoe that opens up in the winter and features beautiful views of Mt. Tallac and Echo Summit.  Here you'll find nicely groomed lanes, friendly service, a grocery store and food truck next door, and lots of tubuler fun.  Equipment is included and tubing is on a first come, first-served basis.  This business stands out with their long lanes (around 500ft.), limited crowds (fees may have something to do with this), views, and rad service.  Workers help guests onto their tubes, making this spot ideal for families.  If you're looking for steeper runs, this may not be the place you're looking for.  They hold free days for special needs families. You can follow them on Instagram for updates.

Check in at this building.

VIT (very important tuber) Season Pass

Click on "Book Reservervations" on homepage and click on "purchase tickets" to see this option. Rates as of 1.2023 

During the pandemic, my family made a trip out to our usual tubing spot-Adventure Mountain, but they were at capacity.  

I asked the worker out on the road if he knew of another tubing place around and he referred me and my family to Tube Tahoe.  

I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was close by (12 minutes).  

I'm glad that Adventure Mountain was at capacity since we were presented with another place to explore and try out.  

The four slopes at Tube Tahoe were perfectly groomed, with kind workers at the top to help hold the tubes in place before take-off.  

This was extremely helpful, allowing for my two little ones to be able to go on their own without me and my husband's supervision.

Me and my family had a great time at TubeTahoe.  Though it was different from our usual snow adventure —less crowds and fewer slopes — it was a welcome change as me and my family love to discover and explore new places.

If you're wondering, Adventure Mountain is also a great tubing resort, with more lanes (18 in prime weather), a snow play area, and a building that has a small shop and eatery area that serves fast food.  This resort caters both to smaller children and adults as some of the slopes are on the steeper side.  If you plan on visiting this resort, make sure to get there a bit before they open to avoid crowds and to secure a parking spot. 

Free Fun Day for Special Needs Families, 2023

"We are excited to host a Free Fun Day for Special Needs Families from near and far. Come visit us this Sunday, January 22nd from 9am – 4pm and check-in at the ticket shop! We will have two tubing lanes designated for this event. We will also be hosting this event on February 12th and March 19th, 2023, if you can’t make it this Sunday!" -source

Thanks so much for being awesome, Tube Tahoe! 

They have a small shop just in case you forget something.  Snacks available for sale.

On A Budget?  No Problem.
There are plenty of areas around Lake Tahoe that are open to the public free of charge (snow permitting).  Check out this video made by YouTuber Gabriella, showing you where to find them. 

-50% discount for South Lake Tahoe locals with ID
-no magic carpet. must walk up to get to the top
-their tubes were so comfortable compared to the ones at Adventure Mountain
-Google maps brought me to the wrong address. Instead, use the Holiday Market grocery store address. 
-Check the weather ahead of time so that you can dress appropriately. Check road conditions to make sure they are clear for travel. 
-Tube Tahoe is conveniently located right next to a grocery Holiday Market, gas station, and Pretty Odd Weiners
-the views of the surrounding mountains were breathtaking
-their store has all of the essentials- sunblock, winter gear, snacks, sunscreen, sunglasses
-outside sleds are not allowed for safety purposes
-there are no places to have picnics except for car or nearby places
-compared to Adventure Mountain, you are not allowed to play with snow in the surrounding areas
-there are a couple of mini slopes at the bottom that me and my kids had fun playing around
-walkway up to the slopes are not as steep as the ones at Adventure Mountain, making them more kid-friendly
-different rates for weekdays vs weekends. Check website for current rates. They charge per person
-first come first served
-helmets not required
-minors under 42" must ride with an adult
-can book for parties after the holidays
-if you're looking for another short road trip nearby, BOA Vista Orchards, a family favorite, is open year-round and the whole Apple Hill opens during Fall. One hour away. 

Pricing as of 1/9/2023
Please check website for current rates

Delicious dogs from Pretty Off Weiners next door after a full day of fun.

Pretty Odd Weiners 
from Website (as of 1/9/2023)

Monday 10:00am - 6:00pm
Tuesday 10:00am - 6:00pm
Wednesday 10:00am - 6:00pm
Thursday 10:00am - 6:00pm
Friday 10:00am - 6:00pm
Saturday 9:00am - 6:00pm
Sunday 9:00am - 6:00pm

*All opinions are my own.  Information subject to change.  Please check in with business for the latest information.

©Katherine Fung,
All Rights Reserved.