Months ago, Santa Monica filmmaker Francis De La Torre and his wife booked a vacation home in Lake Tahoe over Christmas week. They were looking forward to days of skiing and snowboarding in fresh, plush powder — conditions they can't count on closer to home.
But all they found when they arrived were slushy bunny slopes with artificial snow in patches of shade. By their first afternoon, they had shed their wool sweaters because it was too warm, left the slopes and headed for the area's beaches, hiking trails and casinos.
Advertisement - story continues below