Back in April, the FREESKIER crew made our way up to the Great White North to explore five of the most iconic ski areas along British Columbia’s Powder Highway. But we didn’t go it alone—joined by The North Face athletes Tom Wallisch, Rob Heule and a group of hotshot Revelstoke-based ladies that call themselves “The Blondes,” we made our way from RED Mountain to Revelstoke over the course of a week, making sure to stop at Fernie, Panorama and Kicking Horse along the way. Over the course of seven days, we skied, ate, slept and admired the views of Canada’s Kootenay Rockies, documenting each stop with a precise itinerary. Now, we want you to take the trip for yourself—exactly how we did it last spring. Below, we’ve outlined every stop of the trip and we hope you use our agenda to plot your own route around the famed Powder Highway.
Red Mountain offers 360 degrees of terrain that’ll test any skier’s mettle. The ski area, located just north of Rossland—a mining-era town recognized as one of the first ski municipals in Canada—boasts over 2,600 acres of lift-served skiing with an additional 1,600 of hike-to terrain. The cherry on top is the Mt. Kirkup Cat Skiing, which charges a measly $10 per run to shred open bowls and top-notch trees.
WHERE TO GO IN ROSSLAND:
Merging boutique accommodations with an authentic Rossland vibe, this is the place to shack up during your stay
Experience après “Rossland style” with all-day bar fare, nightly specials and live music that’ll have your boots rockin’
This restaurant and lounge offers locally-sourced dishes and top notch cocktails that’ll suit any skier’s palette
At the only local brewery in Rossland, you’ll be treated to an array of Pale Ales, Lagers and Experimental Beers
Thanks to its complete lack of lift lines, the snow stays fresh at Fernie even days after the most recent storm. The resort’s terrain is defined by an incredible amount of natural features that allow skiers to get ultra-creative across five alpine bowls, 3,550 feet of vert, 2,500 skiable acres and 142 runs. We have a feeling you’ll want to come back before you even leave.
WHERE TO GO IN FERNIE:
Fernie’s only ski-in, ski-out accommodations offering an array of condo and hotel-style rooms
Fernie’s biggest music venue also offers bar fare and TVs for watching the big game
Hands down, the best spot in town for brekky bagels and sandwiches, this spot gets a fat stamp of approval from the FREESKIER crew
Established as a coal mining town in 1887, Fernie’s main drag is lined with historical buildings and modern shops
One of Fernie’s best spots for nightlife, this boho-style bar features local acts and plenty of drink specials
Quintessential base area dining and bar service often features live music from the afternoon until evening
Sample small batch hand-crafted spirits in the custom tasting room, open regularly throughout the week
Taste a variety of vodkas at ultra low temperatures while rockin’ custom Helly Hansen parkas—pinky up!
Home to one of the most happenin’ bars in town, this hostel features an array of rooms for individuals or groups
This under-the-radar resort doesn’t average quite the eye-popping snowfall totals as its Powder Highway brethren, but its terrain is still worth the effort to experience. Take Taynton Bowl, for example—its 750 acres of wide-open bowl skiing used to be part of a heli-skiing operation, but is now completely inbounds, patrolled terrain.
WHERE TO GO IN PANORAMA:
The newest restaurant in the village, serving up homemade pasta and pizza with a variety of wine sourced locally from British Columbia
Perched atop the Panorama Mountain, this pitstop is known for its grilled bratwursts, pirogies and “Ray’s Chili”
Located in Kootenay National Park, these natural hot springs offer the perfect respite following a day on the ski hill
The northernmost resort on The Powder Highway, the 2,800-acre Kicking Horse caters to those smitten with steep, challenging trails. Take your pick between four behemoth cirques, separated by three beastly ridgelines. While ascending the 4,133 feet of leg-burning vert, keep your eyes peeled for any one of the 85 inbounds chutes.
WHERE TO GO IN GOLDEN:
Get the steak and leave with a full belly at this top rated, country-style restaurant that offers uninhibited views of Golden’s stunning mountains
Quick coffees, cappuccinos and breakfast items make this the spot to stop before heading up the Gondola
You better have been keeping up with your leg exercises prior to visiting Revelstoke, because it boasts the most vertical—5,620 feet—of any resort in North America. The Stoke is also blessed with 400 inches of average annual snowfall, spread across its 3,121 acres of skiable terrain.