4 Ways to Learn a New Winter Sport in Vancouver This Year

Skier at Cypress Mountain in Vancouver

Skiing at Cypress Mountain. Photo: Destination BC/Insight Photography

Do you look up to the gorgeous snowy mountains above Vancouver and just want to be there? Learn a new winter sport this year and make it a reality. With intro lessons and rentals, it’s easy to learn to ski, snowboard, snowshoe, cross country ski, and backcountry ski in Vancouver. Find out how below.

Until further notice, in line with the public health order issued on November 20, non-essential travel into and out of BC is not recommended. BC residents let’s do our part by continuing to stay local and support local, with your immediate household or bubble, in accordance with the latest guidelines

Safety First: AdventureSmart recommends bringing a backpack with essential safety and first aid gear on every outdoor adventure. Check the forecast and pack extra clothing for the weather. Leave a trip plan so someone knows where you are going and when you will be back.


Learn to Cross-Country Ski

Cross country skiing is a fun way to experience the snowy forests while also getting a full-body workout that builds core strength. Cypress Mountain’s Nordic Centre is home to the closest cross country ski trails to Vancouver. They offer 1.5-hour intro lessons for beginners where you’ll learn the basics and get set to tackle the trails on your own. There are packages that include rentals too.

Cross country skiing at Cypress Mountain near Vancouver

Cross country skiing at Cypress Mountain’s Nordic Area. Photo: Cypress Mountain (Facebook)


Try Skiing or Snowboarding

If you’re never tried skiing or snowboarding, it can be hard to decide which to learn. Skiing is easier at the start but harder to master, while snowboarding is challenging for the first few days, but after that, it’s simpler to make progress. No matter which one you choose, taking a lesson is the best way to set yourself up for success.

All three of Vancouver’s North Shore mountains offer beginner lessons and rental packages designed to help you learn to shred on skis or a snowboard. There are COVID-safe small group lessons, multi-lesson packages, and private lessons. Find lesson info on the websites for Grouse Mountain, Mount Seymour, and Cypress Mountain.

Taking a ski lesson on Grouse Mountain

Ski lessons on Grouse Mountain. Photo: Tourism Vancouver/Grouse Mountain


Learn to Snowshoe

Snowshoeing is one of the easiest winter sports to learn. There are a few techniques and safety precautions to master, but mostly, it’s just walking through a winter wonderland. If you’re going for the first time, consider taking an intro class. Both Mount Seymour and Grouse Mountain offer intro to snowshoeing tours with an experienced guide to help you get started.

If you want to go on your own, Cypress Mountain, Mount Seymour, and Grouse Mountain all have safe, marked, in-bounds snowshoeing trails with regular safety patrols. They have snowshoe rentals too.

Snowshoeing on Grouse Mountain

Snowshoeing on Grouse Mountain. Photo: Tourism Vancouver/Rishad Daroowala


Try Backcountry Skiing

If you’re an experienced skier or snowboarder but want to try skiing untracked snow outside the resort, taking an intro to backcountry skiing or splitboarding course is the safest way to go. Experienced guides will take you to safe terrain, teach you how to use your gear to climb uphill, help you learn the basics of avalanche safety, and ensure you get some killer turns in on the way down. Book a course with Mountain Skills Academy and Adventures.

Learning to backcountry ski with Mountain Skills Academy and Adventures near Vancouver

Photo: Mountain Skills Academy and Adventures

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