Northstar-at-Tahoe -- California
Northstar, on Lake Tahoe, tops the list of family-friendly West Coast resorts for its manageable size and beginner and intermediate terrain. Families who prefer popcorn by the fire over disco will fit right in.
Why kids love it: The Paw Park adventure zones offer bumps and jumps designed for young skiers and snowboarders.
Why parents love it: A Parent Predicament lift ticket allows parents to share one ticket -- perfect for folks who alternate skiing and watching the kids.
Why families love it: A free one-hour Mommy, Daddy, and Me clinic offers tips on skiing with kids ages 3 to 5.
For non-skiers: Hitch up to a dog sled for a 20-minute tour, or hop on a guided snowmobile tour.
Children's programs: The Minor's Camp offers an all-day childcare program for 2- to 6-year-olds with learn-to-ski options available. Starkids and Shredkids packages, with skiing and snowboarding, are available for ages 5 to 12 and include tubing, lift ticket, and rental equipment. New this season is a Startykes program for 4-year-olds that offers tubing and alternate snow sports for kids not ready to ski.
Lodging: Try the Village Lodge or private condominiums. 800-GO-NORTH; www.skinorthstar.com.