How to #SkiNorthBC
Northern BC lures skiers and snowboarders with epic snowfalls and wide-open spaces, perfect for powder shots and Instagrammable views to send home.
Ski resorts with deep stashes and soulful local vibes are just the beginning. You can pick from so many winter adventures: cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, tubing or snowmobiling through a vast, winter wonderland.
Bring along your family and friends and make a holiday out of it. We're pretty sure you'll be wondering what took you so long to get here.
Of course, you're bound to meet a few locals along the way who are happy to share their favourite spots for adventure.
To help plan your visit, check out below what the in-the-know locals have to say about their favourite places to eat, ski or ride, eat or just play in the snow. Here's the play by play on #HowtoSkiNorthBC!
Claire Challen (pictured below right, with friends) is a sponsored Rossignol skier and instructor based in Smithers. Her unbridled enthusiasm flows through everything, including her love for sharing winter in her home base.
Keep reading for her tips.
Where to eat? What are your top three places to eat in Smithers?
- Blue Water Sushi
- Telly’s Grill
Where to stay: Learn about where to stay here.
Getting there: A straightforward four-and-a-half hour drive from Prince George along the Yellowhead. Or, skip the drive and fly in via Central Mountain Air.
Challen's tips to skiing Smithers: "Head right when you get off the chairlift at Hudson Bay Mountain Resort and look for someone who knows where they are going - and you’ll be sure to find some secret snow stashes."
Austin Gray works at Ruckus Skis, Boards and Bikes in Prince George. He’s a big time mountain biker and skier who's got the skinny (and fat) on all things PK and PG.
Where to play: Powder King Mountain Resort
What is your best tip for skiing in northern BC? "My best tip for skiing up here in the north, and in particular Powder King, is to be ready to ski the deep! Even if it hasn’t snowed for a bit, there’s always fresh turns to find, so bring the fat planks and leave the groomer skis at home!" (editor's note: see image above.)
What are your top three places to eat?
- Welcome to “Powder Town” the base of Powder King where The King’s Pub and Dining Room is the spot on mountain.
- Stay just down the way at the Azouzetta Lake Resort (5 mins from the hill), and wait till you get a load of their fresh doughnuts, fresh made breakfast sandwiches and stellar pizzas!
- If you are really lucky you might score an invite from one of the locals or those from Prince George who own cabins on the hill for a barbecue!
Where to stay: Learn about where to stay here.
Getting there: Powder King is a two-hour drive north from Prince George or can be part of a stellar road trip - Edmonton to Marmot to Powder King. And then hit a new one on your way home - Nitehawk - for a night ski and an apres you will not forget. Be sure to stop in at Grande Prairie’s dino-themed indoor water park in their Rec plex (it even has a surf rider wave machine!). If you choose to fly (be sure to buy carbon credits to offset the flight), Prince George Airport has daily arrivals from a host of cities. Come #SkiNorthBC.
Local Bonnie Grenon is the social media manager for Troll Ski Resort and a long-time local photographer, who's tapped into the Quesnel scene.
What is your top tip for those coming to the experience the Barkerville Highway, and skiing at Troll? Travelling down the Barkerville Highway is like travelling back to when life was easier and more carefree. You will be met with the friendliest people, wearing the warmest of smiles. Adventures here will bring back memories of your childhood while helping to create lasting memories in the now.
Whether it is sledding, cross-country or downhill skiing, snowshoeing, tubing, or just taking in the local culture, from Troll Resort, through Wells, and onto Barkerville, we have everything you are looking for.
What are your top places to eat in Quesnel? "Quesnel's newest restaurants - Red Tomato Pies and Heavy D's BBQ - have been getting rave reviews. Red Tomato Pies is a homemade-style pizza place originating from Williams Lake (where it is WILDLY successful) and Heavy D's BBQ is a licensed BBQ- style restaurant specializing in pulled pork."
Where to stay: Find places to stay here.
Getting there: Fly Central Mountain Air from Vancouver landing directly into Quesnel (buy carbon offsets, or plant trees). Or, make a road trip landing into #SkiNorthBC country with about a 4 1/2-hour drive north of Kamloops. Come #SkiNorthBC.
Dave Jorgenson is a local Wells radio and adventure travel producer. His mission is to get you outside and explore his backyard.
Where to play: Cross-country and downhill skiing, ice fishing, ice skating, tubing, history, single malt whiskey.
What is your top tip for those coming north to go ski Wells/Troll? Get out here! Troll has unique onsite accommodation, Wells does too, and it’s just 20 minutes away embedded in the mountains. It takes effort to tag all the ski options when you #SkiNorthBC, so get out of the cities and experience non-urban, and non-resort options in accommodation and eating. That way the fun stays with you well past the experience on the hill!