48 Hours in Terrace, B.C.
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Skiing and apres pleasure run deep at one of the snowiest places in North America
Terrace smells, looks and feels wild.
A region carved by the immense power of the ocean, awe-inspiring glaciers and a hidden fault line, the landscape surrounding Terrace, B.C. is distinct. A mixture of coastal and interior rainforest coats the valley, breaking only for the nearby Skeena and Kitsumkalum waterways.
A fresh layer of snow blanketing the town and nearby mountains greeted us and we felt welcomed back into town as we prepared to ski at nearby Shames Mountain. Basecamp for the next 48 hours was established in a cozy hotel located in the centre of Terrace, a perfect location to embrace snow opportunities in any direction while partaking in the town's night life.
Forty feet of snow fall each year here. Yes friends, this is the average for Shames Mountain (My Mountain Co-op).
With a reputation of being one of the snowiest places in North America, we had to investigate and see for ourselves. Disappoint it did not. By midday we had eaten our weight in snow purely from the amount of face shots consumed, it was that deep.
Thanks to Robin Cecioni, Shames Mountain resident and maintenance manager, we dug deep into the freshly laid corduroy to finish the day. Our first day at Shames provided a full sampler of terrain, between the snow and lighting. We didn't want it to end, but the local beers served on the outdoor patio soothed our powder cravings just fine. With a clink of the glasses, flakes began to fall again. Could it be a full reset on snow for tomorrow? Riddled with excitement from the day and the possibility of doing it all over again tomorrow made it hard to sleep.
Wide-eyed we said good morning to a fresh foot of snow and headed back to Shames Mountain with backcountry ski touring gear this time around.
It's worth noting that Shames is not open the whole week. As a group of experienced and professionally trained backcountry users we concluded after careful research and information gathering that today would be a safe day to play in the backcountry and within the limits of the closed resort. Skinning up under the still chairlift was cruisey on the groomed runs, but soon the skin track was deep as we ventured past the resort boundaries and into the backcountry. Ridgelines flawlessly linked peak to peak creating a visual feast of powder-filled backcountry opportunities. We didnt have to go far for epic terrain and amazing snow.