I wanted to flesh out my site with some more ski & snowboarding content as I’ve had a hankering to get out there again soon. Then I heard Big White Ski Resort picked up a shnazzy new award, and thought I’d grill them to answer some questions and explain to me what exactly makes Big White so different from the other ski resorts in Canada. Their friendly team happily answered my email, and I think it’s safe to say I might have just decided where I’m going to snowboard next. Let’s get to the Q’s and A’s.
Ski Canada Magazine recently awarded Big White “Best of Skiing in Canada,” what is it that sets Big White apart from other ski resorts?
Big White Ski Resort offers up big outdoor adventures in the heart of the Okanagan Valley. Nestled in the picturesque Monashee Mountain range, Big White Ski Resort is just 45 minutes from Kelowna International Airport. Boasting Canada’s largest ski-in, ski-out resort village, Big White Ski Resort can accommodate more than 17,000 guests. And all that winter fun hasn’t gone unnoticed. Big White has racked up numerous accolades, such as the people’s choice for 2014 Family Ski Resort of the Year.
How long has Big White been in operation, could you share a bit of the history?
The history of Big White Ski Resort dates back to 1963 when the hill opened with a day lodge and the longest T-bar in Canada. In 1963 the Serwa’s and Mervyn’s families started a huge undertaking, creating Big White Ski Hill from scratch. In their first year they had to build a road, a day-lodge and a lift. The original base area was located approximately where The Aspens is now. In that first year they did successfully complete the road, the day-lodge and the T-Bar. That feat put Big White Ski Resort on the path to becoming what it is today. In 1985, the Schumann Family purchased Big White Ski Resort with the goal to build a world-class ski resort focusing on customer convenience and service, while increasing capacity, and offering new skiing terrain.
While some ski resorts are known for powder, some for the terrain, some are known for parties, what would you say Big White is most well known for?
It’s all that beautiful champagne powder that makes Big White Ski Resort one of Canada’s top ski destinations, with an average annual snowfall of nearly 7.5 meters (24.5 feet). Big White Ski Resort boasts 118 runs spread across five powder bowls, and to handle all that winter-time traffic, Big White Ski Resort hosts 16 liQs, and a total uphill liQ capacity of 28,000 skiers per hour so you can spend more time on the runs and less time in pesky lines.
As Canada’s most family friendly ski resort, Big White Ski Resort is abound with family friendly fun. The resort has received top honours for offering up this and other types winter-themed fun for the whole family. Snow Action Magazine in Australia named Big White its 2014 Family Ski Resort of the Year, and the resort made the Out & About with Kids Best of Family Awards list as their pick for the 2014 Best International Family Ski Resort.
Sore bones, muscles, and ego’s tend to heal best with a day off of the slopes. Besides the amazing ski & snowboard, what are some other things to take in while visiting Big White?
From snowshoe tours to horse-drawn sleigh dinners to snowmobiling, Big White Ski Resort has an activity to suit every preference, including:
- Dog Sled Tours
- Ice Climbing Tower
- Ice Skating
- Sleigh Rides
- Snowmobile Tours
- SnoLimo Tours
- Snowshoe Tours
- Dining Tours
- Wine Tours
Read more about some of our other Big White Ski Resort Events & Activities.
Are there any big events that take place in Big White that you’d recommend planning your trip around?
- March 7, 2015 – Big White Kelowna Cup
- March 14-15, 2015 – Cruz the Blues
- March 28, 2015 – Big Whites at Big White
- April 1-5, 2015 – Canada Snowboard Snowboardcross Nationals
Other fun family events:
- Après Ski Family nights happen seven nights a week, with free popcorn, colouring for the kids and live music for the adults
- On Mondays and Tuesdays kids can get a break from parents during ‘Craft Nights’
- The ‘Hot Chocolate and Bonfire’ nights provide a delicious way to warm up on Wednesdays and Fridays
- On Thursday and Saturday nights, the resort transforms into a ‘Carnival’ atmosphere, featuring activities, prizes and face painting
- Families can test their knowledge during ‘Trivia Night’ Thursdays
- On Fridays Kid’s After Dark holds a ‘Pizza Party and Games Night‘ in the Kid’s Centre
- Saturday nights at Big White Ski Resort offer a world famous Fireworks show in Happy Valley
Special thanks to Big White for letting me ask a few questions and find out more about their resort. If their photos are a sign of anything, it’s that I need to get out there soon! That powder… goodness me.