Photo: Bob Bennison


About 70% of British Columbia’s geography is considered “mountainous” and there are more than a few ranges that make their way through the province. The climate of British Columbia lends a hand to epic snowfall each winter. To show for it, nearly thirty resorts exist across the province, and more than a couple are famous across the country and globe as ski destinations. Below are some of the best of the best that British Columbia has to offer when it comes to a winter ski vacation destination.


Photo: Dave Steers

Whistler Blackcomb

Without need for an introduction, especially since the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, Whistler Blackcomb is British Columbia’s most famous ski resort. It is a ski destination that has it all: Hundreds of runs, glaciers, numerous chairs, a massive gondola, two peaks and a picturesque village boasting a rambunctious nightlife. Plus, it’s only two hours from Vancouver. There’s terrain on Whistler Blackcomb for everyone (about 35% of the mountain is marked green for beginners) and plenty of snow to go around. The snow that falls has a wide range of types and densities throughout the season, including the heavier stuff common to coastal mountains thanks to the humidity and moisture in the air. However, if you get a day right after a big dump, you'll be playing in pillows of powder.

# of Runs: 200+

Average Snowfall: 1,168cm


Photo: Oscar Grubweiser

Mount Washington Alpine Resort

Mount Washington is Vancouver Island’s stomping grounds and the Alpine Resort is a paradise for skiers and snowboarders. From its outback lift, all the way to the magic carpet bunny hill, there is terrain to suit every need. Over fifty percent of the mountain is dedicated to advanced and expert skiers and riders, with designated intermediate chairs, too. That being said, there is a forgiving green hill, and about fifteen percent of the mountain caters to those first-timers. They also offer a fantastic ski school and plenty of rental options. The snow here is often plentiful and even record-breaking at times, although heavier than other locations thanks to its lower elevation and coastal location. Mount Washington offers incredible views of the Comox Valley and Pacific Ocean that you can enjoy while racing down any of the 81 trails. They often get record breaking snowfalls, too.

# of Runs: 81

Average Snowfall: 1920cm


Photo: Vladimir Morgoslepov

Fernie Alpine Resort

Fernie is a charming ski town that offers a picturesque vacation matched with great snow and over one hundred trails to enjoy. New to the sport? About thirty percent of the tracks on Fernie are dedicated to beginners, most of them closest to the village for the early quitters wanting a beer break. If downhill isn’t quite your pace and the thought of taking on one of the highest peaks in a British Columbia mountain range doesn’t sound like fun, they offer a stunning array of Nordic trails to enjoy at the base of the mountain. Thanks to the city of Fernie being tucked right into the mountains, even those who don’t want to do anything remotely active with their vacation can still enjoy a dash of urban life. Fernie is known for its high annual snowfall and dumping of legendarily deep powder thanks to its interior location and position in the Lizard Range.

# of Runs: 141

Average Snowfall: 914cm


Photo: Eric Cain

Kimberley Alpine Resort

Tucked into the Selkirk and Rocky Mountains, Kimberley is a well-rounded ski destination that offers terrain for absolutely every level of skiing. About twenty-percent of the mountain is set aside for beginner skiers, while nearly forty is dedicated to those who know what they're doing. It even offers night skiing and has great ski-in, ski-out accommodation available on the hill. This means Kimberly Alpine Resort also offers some fantastic stargazing. While a bit smaller, Kimberley offers a sunny, laidback vibe that only a smaller resort can possess.

# of Runs: 80

Average Snowfall: 399cm


Revelstoke Mountain Resort

One of the newest resorts in the country, “Revie” has gained huge popularity and is known as a mountain for intermediate and advanced skiers and snowboarders. In fact, it's almost fifty-fifty for intermediate and advanced, with only 7% of the mountain set aside for those first-timers and beginners. Revelstoke is not a resort for the faint of heart. Aside from the usual resort lift-access trails, Revelstoke offers mountain-goers the chance to experience heli-skiing, cat-skiing and backcountry skiing all from the same village. The powder is considered to be a bit on the heavy side, but no one really seems to care - there's so much of it in a given season, and too many powder days to complain. Revelstoke has real potential to become one of the greatest ski resorts in British Columbia and despite its "new" status, is already one of the top resorts to visit.

# of Runs: 69

Average Snowfall: 1372cm


Photo: Doug Zwick

Kicking Horse Mountain Resort

Tucked into the Rockies, Kicking Horse Mountain Resort outside of Golden offers the best of family fun, and extreme, big-mountain skiing. Boasting the fourth highest vertical in North America and the title of Champagne Powder Capital of Canada, Kicking Horse is an easy, B.C. favourite. Despite the big mountain vibe, there's still about twenty percent of the mountain, and one of the four chairlifts, set aside for the beginners of the pack. The biggest focus, however, is on the advanced crew, who get to claim about forty percent of the slopes. Kicking Horse is famous for light, dry powder (hence the title) and getting lots of it. The cozy ski village tops off the experience with some ideal après-ski hotspots that let you relax after exploring.

# of Runs: 129

Average Snowfall: 749cm


Big White Ski Resort

Big White’s claim to fame is as Canada’s largest ski-in, ski-out resort village. Located just outside of Kelowna, there’s more to Big White than just downhill. From dog sledding to ice climbing, even those non-skier vacationers will find something to do. Intermediate skiers find a great home at Big White, as over half the mountain is dedicated intermediate, while beginners are allocated just under twenty percent. That being said, the groomers make it enjoyable for both beginners and intermediate alike, since they don't have to worry about the fluffy powder known to the mountain.

# of Runs: 118

Average Snowfall: 750cm


Photo: Paula Wallis

SilverStar Mountain Resort

SilverStar Resort has something to offer everyone from absolute beginner to advanced. However, it's truly a paradise dominated by the intermediate and average groups, with forty and thirty-five percent of the slopes dedicated to each respectively. Ski-in, ski-out access to accommodation and plenty of other winter activities make for a well-rounded trip. Especially considering they offer an all-inclusive lift ticket that gives you access to each of the activities available at the picturesque, mid-mountain village. The colourful houses help create a cheery, playful atmosphere in what is the third largest ski resort in British Columbia. SilverStar also receives ideal snow, alongside near perfect ski temperatures - cold enough to keep the snow dry and consistent, yet warm enough that you don't need to stop every other run to warm up at the lodge.

# of Runs: 132

Average Snowfall: 701cm


Sun Peaks Resort

Sun Peaks is one of the top ski resorts for family vacation fun. While it offers plenty of terrain for all types, the family-friendly aspect lies in its child-minding and ski school services, with plenty of other extra kid-friendly activities. Spread over a number of mountains, Sun Peaks possesses the second largest ski area in Canada and offers mellow groomers, challenging glades, and tough terrain like open bowls. Sun Peaks' powder, while in less quantity than other destinations, is relatively dry, making the skiing light and fun. Ten percent of the massive resort is dedicated to beginners, with fifty-eight and thirty-two percent set aside for intermediate and advanced/expert skiers and snowboarders respectively. The abundance of well-maintained and groomed runs makes Sun Peaks a haven for those intermediates in particular.

# of Runs: 135

Average Snowfall: 602cm


Photo: Feng Sheng

Panorama Mountain Resort

Panorama is true to its name, offering breathtaking views of snow-kissed mountain tops while you enjoy over 120 runs, or a post-ski beer in the charming village. The numerous events and competitions create an encouraging vibe that inspires even beginners to pick back up and hit the slopes again and again. Plus, the snow is dry and the weather is typically sunny, so the conditions are just as likely to coax you onto the hill as the vibes are. Another great aspect of Panorama is that, despite its fantastic offerings, the hill is quite undiscovered, meaning nearly empty runs throughout the day, even on weekends. A favourite for families and 20-somethings alike thanks to its awesome layout, and enjoyable nightlife, Panorama is a well-rounded hill with mountain village aspects for everyone. The hill is twenty percent beginner, fifty-five percent intermediate and twenty-five percent advanced.

# of Runs: 129

Average Snowfall: 500cm


Photo: William Ring

Red Mountain Resort

Located in Rossland, Red Mountain is filled with as much history as it is snow. It’s been around since the 1890s! With ski culture that runs that deep, you know you’re in for a good time. There are over 100 runs to enjoy, and the resort as a whole has remained fairly quiet as the years have gone by, lending to an “untouched” kind of vibe. The mountain offers everything any level of skier/snowboarder could want, from wide-open groomers, to steep pitches and tree-filled glades.  About fifty percent of the hill is for advanced On a non-powder day, you can have the whole place to yourself, too, although Red Mountain is used to its fair share of great powder days of light, fluffy stuff. For non-skiers, however, there isn't much to do besides enjoy a beer with a nice view. As far as mountain resorts go, Red Mountain’s rich history has ensured this particular spot is one of a kind. An added bonus is that the resort is still relatively inexpensive, especially compared to hotspots like Whistler.


# of Runs: 110

Average Snowfall: 762cm