How to #SkiNorthBC

 
Photographer
Jeremy Allen

How to #SkiNorthBC

The 2020/21 ski season is going to be the year of the staycation and that means exploring our big, beautiful backyard. Most of us won't be heading to Hawaii or Mexico, so it's the perfect time to explore the pristine expanse of #SkiNorthBC.

Epic snowfalls and wide-open spaces, perfect for awesome Instagram shots - and social distancing - are what we're all looking for these days. Up here, 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. 

People and experiences make a #SkiNorthBC adventure unforgettable.

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. 

Hudson Bay Smithers
Photographer
Jeremy Allen

Smithers:

Local - Claire Challen, Rossignol skier and dynamite person with a zest for life

Where to play: Smithers is home to Hudson Bay Mountain Resort and Skeena Heli/Cat Skiing

Of all the options, what is your favourite winter experience in Smithers and why?

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.

Where to eat? What are your top two or three places to eat in Smithers?

  • Blue Water Sushi

  • Roadhouse

  • 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.

Powder King
Photographer
Doc Pow

Powder King:

Local - Austin Gray works at Ruckus Skis, Boards and Bikes in Prince George. He’s a big time mountain biker and skier

Where to play: Powder King Mountain Resort, tobogganing, ice skating, snowshoeing.

What is your best tip for skiing in northern B.C.? 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! 

What are your top two or 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 cinnamon buns, 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.

Murray Ridge Fort St James
Photographer
Jeremy Allen

Fort St. James:

Local - Sarah Grill works as a nurse in town and is on the board for Murray Ridge Ski Area, in Fort St James

What is your top tip for those coming to the north to go ski Murray Ridge? Ride the Ridge. Find a local and head off-piste to experience our endless kilometres of steep terrain. But, be sure to give the legs a break and hit up one of our rippin’ groomers, too.

What are your suggestions when it comes to eating out in Fort St. James? If you haven’t grabbed a burger and poutine at Murray Ridge, the North Arm Pub always has good eats and friendly staff to pour you a pint or two. Or, alternatively, get yourself a dinner invite from a friendly local. 

 

Where to stay: Find places to stay here.

Getting there: Prince George to Murray Ridge (Fort St. James), is about a two-hour drive. Make it part of a Hudson Bay (Smithers) and Powder King road trip.  If you have to fly, land in Prince George and go from there.

Troll Quesnel
Photographer
Jeremy Allen

Quesnel/Troll

Local - Bonnie Grenon, social media manager for Troll Ski Resort and long-time local photographer

Where to play: Snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, fat biking and trail running, craft beer and history.

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. 

Where to eat? What are your top two or three 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.

Wells
Photographer
Abby Cooper

Wells

Local - Dave Jorgenson is a local 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.

Check out this SnowSeekers' story about the top five reasons to visit Wells.

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!

Where to eat? What are your top one or two or places to eat in Wells? Is there a stop in Quesnel you don’t miss? The Bear’s Paw Cafe in Wells is the No. 1 spot in winter, but always be sure to check their hours. They’ll even deliver directly to your door if you’re staying at the Mountain Thyme Guesthouse or Willow River Inn.

Where to stay: Learn about Wells here.

Getting there: Fly Central Mountain Airlines from Vancouver, landing into Quesnel (think about making a donation to Trees Canada to offset the carbon)

When You Go

Stay tuned. We will be connecting you with more information on all things #SkiNorthBC soon. For the latest, please bookmark this page - #SkiNorthBC Expedition home page.

In the meantime jump onto our partners' links to learn where more about the region's outdoor winter adventures.

For all things #SkiNorthBC, visit our campaign hub here

Use the tag #SkiNorthBC to let us know what you discover. You could be featured on our social media channels!