British Columbia’s Ski Resorts Elevate Family Fun

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In BC, a winter escape to one of the province’s ski-in/ski-out resorts promises cool outdoor adventure sure to take family togetherness to new heights.


Mount Washington
Bookended by Strathcona Provincial Park to the west and the deep blue waters of the Georgia Strait to the east, Mount Washington Alpine Resort is home to five chair lifts and five Magic Carpets that serve more than 688 hectares (1,700 acres) of ski and snowboard terrain suited to all levels. For little ones, Easy Acres, with its Magic Carpets, makes first tracks for beginners a breeze; once they advance, it’s on to groomed runs and the forgiving Goodtime Glades. Families don’t have to stick to the slopes, though: 55 kilometres (34 miles) of cross-country track in Vancouver Island’s Strathcona Provincial Park beckons while a downhill experience at the resort’s Tube Park ensures a slide-and-glide good time for all. mountwashington.ca

Big White Resort
Big White Resort has a reputation for big-time family fun in BC’s interior. Here, even the smallest skiers are top of mind: the resort’s new Ogopogo Adventure Trail, a kid-friendly course that mimics the undulating shape of the mythical Okanagan Lake-dwelling creature, is proof positive. And there’s more incentive for newbies and their parents to head to the slopes near Kelowna: early-morning pickups transport kiddies from their accommodation to the mountain for instruction; young ones are equipped with the Flaik GPS system to track movements alongside stats; and Kids Centre After Dark encourages parents to kick off their boots while their tiny adventurers indulge in supervised tubing, skating, snowshoeing and tests of vertical strength on the resort’s own 18-metre (60-foot) ice tower. bigwhite.com

Silver Star Resort
At nearby Silver Star Resort, all-inclusive lift tickets promise more than unlimited downhill action on the resort’s four mountain faces. What’s in store? Adventurists can ditch the skis and boards and flash their pass for a downhill rush at the tube park, twirls on an outdoor mountain pond, snowshoe treks through thick forests of fir, biking in the snow (a.k.a. fat biking) and kick-up-the-heels cross-country skiing action. And once an adrenalin-fueled afternoon wraps, families can take it down a notch with sips of steaming hot chocolate by the resort’s outdoor fire pit — the perfect locale to toast fingers and toes, and to strategize another day’s play in the snow. skisilverstar.com

Sun Peaks Resort
Further northwest near Kamloops, Sun Peaks Resort delivers its fair share of togetherness with a host of new offerings. On the roster: keeners can be first (literally) to plough some snow with Fresh Tracks Private Lessons or opt instead to sharpen skills, and stir up a little friendly competition, during Saturday’s Family Fun Dual Races. Additional activities fill the roster, including Family Fun Nights (Tuesdays) at the skating pond and Craft Nights (Wednesdays) at the Sundance Kids Centre. For a true crowd-pleaser, the Thursday and Friday Fondue Dinner and Evening Descent showcases a night of ooey-gooey menus and live music, topped with a torch-led ski or snowboard glide down freshly groomed 5 Mile run. sunpeaksresort.com

Apex Mountain Resort
Three terrain parks, plus a World Cup aerial site, mogul course and the world’s longest rail, draw crowds at Apex Mountain Resort. Add night skiing and a lift-accessed tube park to the full-service, on-slope adventure, alongside a one-kilometre (.6-mile) ice skating loop and a groomed and lit outdoor regulation-sized hockey rink, and there’s more than enough reason to make this quaint, family-friendly resort, west of Penticton, every cold-climate crew’s preferred winter playground. apexresort.com

Panorama Mountain Resort
At Panorama Mountain Resort, near Invermere, getting off on the right boot is paramount; after all, skiing shouldn’t be scary. For tiny tykes and first-time teens, time spent on Panorama’s slopes promises to be smooth sailing, thanks to the resort’s new Discovery Zone (beginner area) and Kid’s Discovery Program, which includes all rental equipment, a beginner area lift ticket and lunch. An added bonus: Canada’s largest outdoor slopeside hot pools offer a soothing, bubbly reward at the end of the day that first-timers are sure to savour. PanoramaResort.com

Kimberley Alpine Resort
Thoughts of après-ski conjure a crackling fire and hot, spirited beverages topped with tales from the mountain. But what about post-ski play for little ones? At Kimberley Alpine Resort, holiday evenings unfold with a flourish with themed events that focus on crafts, movies, games, treasure hunts and more. And when the smallest adventurers aren’t fashioning snow-themed creations, they can opt for smooth cruising during daylight hours along Alpine Slide, a new beginner trail, bookended by twilight turns with night skiing down one of North America’s longest illuminated runs. skikimberley.com

 

STORY COURTESY OF DESTINATIONBC.CA

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