TERRACE, BC — Shames Mountain Ski Area, located just outside of Terrace, British Columbia, is the type of place where you can get in powder tracks with little to no effort, because they are everywhere. The big story and the top story at Shames is powder; this hill is known for getting more snow than most other lift-serviced destinations on the planet.
“Here at Shames, it’s a very organic experience. We are a traditional ski hill, you come here to play in the snow, period. It’s all about fun,” explains general manager, Marty Elston.
The thing that continually blows me away about Shames is the opportunity to make turns in powder conditions that last for days. At any other ski destination the pow gets gobbled up quickly, but here in the Skeena Mountain Range and the entire region of Terrace, not only do the opportunities linger, but there is no rush to get at them, because there are not many people around to eat them up.
If you are a fan of the backcountry, then Shames is your spot. There are a ton of incredible backcountry options, like when we hit into the runs V and Burnt Trees, which is a cool hike with some outstanding powder stashes all funnelling into a great basin that will pop you back into the resort boundaries.
Although the mountain may be home to a vertical of only 468 metres (1,600 feet), one chairlift, one t-bar and 28 trails, you may just want to keep Shames on your list for one single fact – a 12 metre (40 feet) average snowfall.
To put that into perpective, that's five stories of the white stuff
"Today we went over the meter stick at 5 meters … it’s buried,” said Mike Talstra, ski school director. "Last year we received 190 centimetres in 24 hours and this season we received 300 cms (just short of 10 feet) in a week. In conditions like this it's like you don’t even need edges on your board or skis, it's so powdery. We get, maybe, two days of ice here, ever.”
There have been reports where it’s started to snow and it hasn’t stopped, to the point where people get snowed in up at the lodge. Luckily, there is Sneaky Pete’s to keep everyone occupied and it’s one of the local’s best kept secrets. Galloway’s is the on-mountain bar featuring a very interesting and delicious signature drink that combines a generous blend of Kahlua, Rye and milk over ice in an oversized mug from a free pouring bartender.
The resort works with a number of hotels and lodges in Terrace to provide special packages that include both lift tickets and accommodations. To find out more about Shames Mountain Resort, visit www.shamesmountain.com
To find out more on Terrace itself, it’s lively nightlife, excellent dining options, alternate activities and it’s many amenities, visitwww.kermodeitourism.ca
Vertical: 488 metres (1,600 ft), Elevation: Base area: 700m (2,300 ft), Top: 1,189m (3,900 ft)
Lift system: Double chair, t-bar and a handle tow, Trails: 28 total
Natural Glades: 45 ha (111 acres), Longest Run: 4 kilometres (2.5 miles)
Day lodge facilities: Galloway’s Mountain Bar, Panhandler Café which offers hot and cold food, ski and snowboard school, retail shop, customer service, rentals, and repairs.
Annual Snowfall: 1,200 cms (39+feet)
Drive from Terrace:30 minutes (38km/23 miles) *Open: Wed-Sunday
The Terrace airport offers regional air service to and from Kelowna, BC and Prince George, BC, plus direct flights from Vancouver, BC are available through Air Canada.
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