Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the more common questions we get about the club.  Please feel free to contact us if you have more!

Click on a question to see the answer

  • I am Gay / Lesbian / Bisexual / Trans- gender / Straight — is this club right for me?
  • The answer is, emphatically, yes!  We are not a family club with children, nor a singles club for people who just want to find dates.  We are a bunch of people who just want to ski and snowboard, and do other outdoor activities, with friends.  We have fun sliding on the snow, and it doesn't matter what your orientation is.  Of course, we do have to share rooms on overnight trips, so if you need to be matched up with someone, you can let the trip leader know what your preferences are if it matters to you.
  • Can I bring a straight friend?
  • Yes, and members often do.  We are primarily about camaraderie during skiing and snowboarding events.  We are not a dating/singles club (though members make new friends of all kinds of course!).
  • Can I bring my child?
  • Only if he or she is an adult.
  • Can I smoke at SAGA North events? / Are SAGA North events smoke-free?
  • Smoking is not allowed indoors, both for social events and trips. With hotel rooms, you are free to ask for a smoking room when you check in, provide both roommates agree to that. Condos and homes are often rented as non-smoking units. SAGA North does not try to match smokers up with other smokers.
  • It looks like transportation is not provided for any of the weekend trips. How do I get there?
  • This is one of the advantages of being in a club. Your trip leader will send out a list of the other people going on your trip, with with their email, phone and city. You may send an email to the other people letting them know you need a ride, or are willing to give someone else a ride. This may sound intimidating if you don't know anyone, but it is actually a good way to introduce yourself to the other members. Most members are willing to give another person a ride if it isn't a long ways out of the way. Riders are expected to share the automobile expenses.
  • Do other people in the club [ ski / snowboard / cross country ski / hike / roller skate / play cards ]?
  • Yes, we primarily do ski and snowboard events during the winter and outdoor activities, such as roller skating and camping during the summer.
  • How does SAGA North decide where to plan the trips?
  • Members volunteer to lead trips wherever they like.  It is up to you as a member to help out.  We are a diverse club and if you do it, they will come!
  • I don't eat [ meat / nuts / dairy / pork ... ].
    I need special accomodations.
    I have a friend I want to room with, but paid separately.
    What can I do?
  • For any special request, please contact the trip leader. That's part of what they are for, though we won't promise that every request can be taken care of. If you think your request might be a problem, please contact the trip leader before you sign up. Every detail trip description page has a link at the bottom for contacting the trip leader.

    Most dietary or roommate requests are easily handled, but don't wait until you go on the trip to deal with it. Many meals will have something for vegetarians, but it always helps the trip or event leader to know how many to plan for. To be assigned as roommates, both persons must notify the trip leader.

    When it comes to choice of bedrooms, usually the first to sign up get the better bedrooms, if there is a significant difference. Other factors are also considered, such as a couple that wants to share a bed. However, if you have a genuine need, we will try to accomodate, if possible.
  • What happens if I have never skied / snowboarded before?
  • On all of our trips, there are a wide and diverse range of skiers/snowboarders from beginners to the more advanced.  Almost all resorts offer lessons, which we recommend for those just starting out. Let the trip leader and your roommates know — they will be happy to direct you to where you need to go.


If you are interested in joining, click here.

If you want more information, click here.

  • This is my first time.  How do I get my equipment?
  • All the resorts where we have trips have one or more shops where you can rent equipment. This usually takes about half an hour (or more if there is a large crowd). You can also rent in town and take the equipment with you, although this is less convenient. If this is your first time, the resort might exchange the lift ticket or voucher for a package deal that includes a limited lift ticket, equipment, and lessons that won't cost much more (if any) than the original lift ticket. When renting or buying equipment, boots are the most important to get a good fit, especially for skiers — if your feet hurt, nothing else will matter. If you rent at the resort, it is easy to exchange a bad pair of boots.
  • This is my first time.  What do I need for clothing?
  • For inner wear, stick to synthetics, that will not collect moisture and lose it's warmth. (Avoid cotton.) Two to four, thin, but warm, layers of inner wear, both top and bottom, allows you to adjust to the weather conditions better than really heavy clothing.

    For outer wear, the most important feature is water-resistance for both the top and the bottom. A hood will come in handy if it gets stormy. While warmth is important, too much can be a problem -- you can always add more layers underneath when needed. Plenty of pockets can be handy.

    Accessories to cover your hands, neck, head, eyes, and often even your face, are also necessary.

    And don't forget the sun block.
  • I haven't been to Tahoe before: where can I get info on the ski resorts?
  • We've got links and season pass info right here on our Ski Resorts page. We also have links to road and snow conditions on our Ski Resources page.
  • What happens if I go on a trip and there is [ too much snow / not enough snow / too hot / too cold ]?
  • Hey, that is part of the fun of skiing!  We are a social organization and we make the best of all situations.  Sometimes we generate heat and sometimes we generate cold.  But, always we have fun!  On rare occasions, if there just is not enough snow to ski or ride, we will cancel the trip and issue refunds when possible.
  • What are the club demographics?
  • We do not explicitly track this.  It is a mix of men / women, gay / lesbian / bi / transgender / straight, couples / singles, skiers / riders, different ages and races. What we all have in common, generally, is that we love to slide on the snow, and we are friendly to anyone no matter what your demographic might be.
  • Where are most members from?
  • Besides San Francisco, we have had members from all around the SF Bay area — from San Jose to San Rafael, and from Fremont to Oakland, Berkeley, Walnut Creek, and Concord — and even a few in other Northern California locations like Santa Cruz, Monterey, Stockton, Sacramento, and Yuba City, to name just a few.
  • What does "SAGA" stand for?
  • Officially, nothing.  It's just the word "saga".

    When the original SAGA club was formed in Los Angles in 1975, it was reported that SAGA meant "Skiers and Gay Athletes". In 1979 SAGA San Diego was formed, and then in 1981, this club was founded as "SAGA North" by some SAGA members who had moved from the Los Angles area to San Francisco, and it was incorporated the following year. In 1999, the board decided to informally call the club "SAGA North Ski & Snowboard Club" without changing the corporation name or filing a fictitious business name. Around 2010, some SAGA North members were less inclined to see the name as an acronym, and favored using "Saga" instead of "SAGA". Then in 2013, the board chose to return to using "SAGA" again.

    Currently, the registered legal name is "SAGA NORTH", the full informal name is "SAGA North Ski & Snowboard Club", and for short, you will see "SAGA North" in most places on this website.
  • What kind of business is SAGA North?
  • "SAGA NORTH" is the legal name under which the club was registered as a 501(c)7 non-profit corporation in the state of California in 1982. It is governed by an executive board elected each year by the members. As a non-profit, net income is retained, used only for club operations. (The state capitalizes the names of all corporations in the registry, so that is not significant.)
  • Is SAGA North involved with any business associations?
  • For many years, the club had been associated with Team SF, an umbrella organization for various LGBT sports clubs in San Francisco that helps organize the teams they send to the Gay Games. (Unfortunately, there are no winter sports in the Gay Games, so while some SAGA North members have attended the Gay Games for other sports, SAGA North has never had the opportunity to participate as a club.) SAGA North was not charged any dues for its association with Team SF, but it is not known if this relationship is still active, since SAGA North has not sent a representative to any of the Team SF meetings for quite a few years.

    In 2015, SAGA North joined the Golden Gate Business Association, the LGBT Chamber of Commerce in San Francisco.

    Sometimes, when SAGA North organizes trips to the various gay ski events, those can include some competitions and social events. SAGA North has occasionally helped sponsor official or unofficial parties at these gay ski events, usually jointly with other ski clubs. This sponsorship exists only for that specific event, and it has never included any control over the organization that manages the gay ski events.