10 best spots for skiing and snowboarding near Vancouver

Vancouver is famous for all the great outdoor recreational opportunities that everyone has access to, whether it is on the land and or in the sea. Hiking? Check. Sailing? Check. Kayaking? Check. Tons more? Absolutely.

Let’s take a closer look at what Vancouver and the surrounding area might be most famous for: skiing and snowboarding.

Here are ten of the best ski and board destinations around Vancouver.


Local mountains


1. Cypress Mountain

Located in Cypress Provincial Park in West Vancouver on the North Shore, Cypress Mountain is a gem that features 53 alpine runs with an elevation gain of over 600m.

Cypress Mountain has the most terrain of the local mountains and features awesome views of Howe Sound, the Burrard Inlet, and the city of Vancouver.

Notably, Cypress hosted the freestyle skiing and snowboarding events for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games.


2. Grouse Mountain

Grouse Mountain features 33 runs over an elevation gain of 365m.

Grouse is a favourite of both locals and visitors alike because of its accessibility: you can take a local bus to the gondola so no car is required.

Grab your gear and go!


3. Mount Seymour

Seymour, located in North Vancouver’s Mt. Seymour Provincial Park, is a great choice for beginners and budget-minded skiers.

Oh, and how about the snow? Lots of it: Mount Seymour averages about 12m a year.

Seymour is also famous for its four terrain parks, with a total of more than 30 features.


Coastal resorts


4. Whistler

Located 90 minutes north of Vancouver, world-famous Whistler Blackcomb Resort is consistently rated the number one ski resort in North America.

Offering 200 runs, 1500m of vertical, and a lift system capable of moving as many as 100,000 skiers an hour, Whistler is a skier’s paradise.

Add in an average of more than 10m of snow a year and you can understand why Whistler is as popular as it is.


5. Mount Baker

Located just over the US border in Washington State, Baker is a legendary destination, especially for experienced snowboarders.

Baker receives a ton of snow: an average of 16m a year, and even received an incredible 29m of the white stuff in 1999.

Baker was one of the first resorts to welcome snowboards rather than ban them. Are you a boarder? You should make the pilgrimage to Baker.


6. Mount Washington

Found in central Vancouver Island, Mount Washington is a hidden gem. It might take some time to get there, but this resort has something for everyone.

Take the Hawk six-pack high-speed lift to the peak and enjoy the wide variety of terrain available, including some excellent glade skiing for the more adventurous.

Snow? No lack of it: Mount Washington averages over 11m a year.


Interior mountains


7. Big White

One of Canada’s biggest and best resorts, Big White offers massive amounts of terrain and vertical in a family-friendly environment.

Located near Kelowna BC, Big White is famous for its ‘snow ghosts’ (trees completely coated in snow) and ‘Champagne powder’ (Kelowna is in a wine-producing region).


8. Sun Peaks

Another big, family-friendly resort, Sun Peaks actually offers skiing and riding on three different mountains!

Found near Kamloops BC, the resort features a beautiful European-style village and lots of sunshine for frequent ‘bluebird’ days on the slopes.

Do you like skiing the trees? Sun Peaks has 19 gladed areas in addition to 137 named trails of all varieties.


9. Silver Star Mountain Resort

A special feature of Silver Star is its mid-mountain village. The village is a colourful and rustic, featuring ‘old west’ style buildings – and, yes, you do ski down from the village to access the high-speed six-pack chairlift that will whisk you quickly up to the skier’s paradise above.

From the peak you have a choice: ski the family-friendly front side of the mountain or continue to the back side of the mountain where seriously steep and deep runs await.

After a long day on the slopes you have to check out the snow tubing attraction: it’s a ton of fun.


10. Apex Mountain Resort

Apex is the southernmost of the major interior resorts (located near Penticton BC) and is home to lots of dry, plentiful snow (an average of 6m a year).

One of the great things about Apex: you never have to wait to get on a chairlift—it’s a hidden treasure. Finish your run and get back on the lift. Get ready to clock some serious vertical metres!


Ski it out

It’s worth noting that most ski resorts around Vancouver offer more outdoor activities than just Alpine (downhill) skiing. You can also enjoy activities like Nordic (cross country) skiing, snowshoeing, snow tubing, skating, and snowmobiling. Heck, Whistler even offers wildlife watching tours, zip lining, and a Scandinavian style spa.

If your legs get too tired to do another run, there’s always something to do at a BC mountain resort.