Metres of Fresh Snow on Vancouver Mountains: Exploring Grouse

Photo credit: lawrence's lenses | Flickr

Photo credit: lawrence’s lenses | Flickr

After a snow drought most of the winter, the floodgates have opened.  The last several weeks have seen the Vancouver mountains blanketed with metres of fresh snow.  For skiers who have waited patiently, the time is now to hit the slopes.

I checked out Grouse Mountain over a recent weekend, on a day when it was pouring rain in downtown Vancouver.  Up on Grouse, however, all that precipitation was light, fluffy snow; in fact, the mountain had been dumped with nearly 25 centimetres of white stuff in the last 48 hours.

Situated only about 15 minutes from downtown, Grouse is known as the “Peak of Vancouver.” It offers 26 runs serviced by four chairlifts, plus two terrain parks. While the mountain may not have the biggest vertical drop or most technical trails in the area (that distinction generally goes to nearby Cypress), it is a great setting for people (like me) still learning to ski, with more than a half-dozen easy green and blue runs.

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Metres of Fresh Snow on Vancouver Mountains: Exploring Grouse

Beginner’s Quest for Spring Skiing on Grouse Mountain

GrouseSki-21While cherry blossoms may be blooming on the streets of downtown Vancouver, a few thousand metres above the city, there’s still plenty of snow on the mountains.

It’s spring skiing season on the North Shore mountains.  That precious window of time when you can hit the slopes in a t-shirt and get a tan by the time the day is out.

Or so I’ve heard.  This is my first season on the slopes, so I’ve never actually experienced Vancouver’s legendary spring skiing myself.  But on a recent sunny Saturday, I decided to head to Grouse Mountain to see what all the excitement is about. Continue reading:
Beginner’s Quest for Spring Skiing on Grouse Mountain

Get Excited

Sun, skis and bikinis: Spring Skiing through April 29 in Vancouver

Photo credit: Photo-John | Flickr

Anyone ready for some spring skiing?

With the sun finally shining and the weather practically balmy, you might be thinking about heading to the beach.  But it’s not too late to get some time in on the slopes.

Grouse Mountain had a near record year in terms of snowfall, with a whopping 1,100 centimetres of snow since last fall (Remember all that rain we had in the city?  Well, that was all white stuff in the North Shore mountains).

Even with the warm temperatures over the weekend, Grouse still has a 518-centimetre base at the peak. With all that snow, the mountain plans to stay open to skiers for at least another week, until April 29Continue reading:
Sun, skis and bikinis: Spring Skiing through April 29 in Vancouver

Cross Country Skiing in Vancouver

Photo credit: Cypress Mountain

While Whistler gets most of the ski spotlight, Vancouver has three great ski mountains within a short drive of downtown.  And while we may not necessarily be able to top Whistler in terms of downhill thrills, Vancouver does offer an incredible option for cross country skiing enthusiasts: Cypress Mountain.

Located a 30-45-minute drive from downtown in West Vancouver, Cypress Mountain is considered the most popular cross country skiing destination in all of Canada.  Cypress boasts 19 kilometres of groomed/classic track trails with skating lanes, with 7.5 kilometres outfitted for night skiing.  Better still, trails weave through stunning alpine terrain – a true winter wonderland of towering trees and snow drifts high in the mountains.

I checked out Cypress’ Nordic offerings for myself recently.  Full disclosure: It was my first time on cross-country skis – so I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect.

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Cross Country Skiing in Vancouver

Ready for WinterPRIDE? LGBT ski week returns, Feb. 5-12

Travelocity Ski Guide Training for WinterPRIDE 2011

It was 20 years ago that Whistler – North America’s top-ranked ski resort – took one small step for gay skiers and one giant leap forward for the Pride movement.  Upset over the passage of anti-gay legislation in Colorado, local activists decided to boycott the famous Aspen Gay Ski Week and start their own celebration.  A few hundred skiers and boarders showed up for a low-key week on the slopes.

Fast-forward to the present and WinterPRIDE is ranked one of the top ten gay ski weeks on the planet by the UK’s Guardian newspaper, attracting up to 3,000 revelers every year.  And the party is anything but low key.

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Ready for WinterPRIDE? LGBT ski week returns, Feb. 5-12

Great Deals at Mount Seymour: Ladies Ride Free & Kids Ski Free Starting in January 2012

As Remy made evident in his post on skiing and snowboarding in Vancouver, easy access to nearby mountains is one of the best things about living in Vancouver. And hitting the slopes close to home just got much less expensive, too, with two great deals from Mount Seymour starting this month: Shred for the Cure, Ladies Ride Free & Kids Ski Free.

Mount Seymour’s Shred for the Cure, Ladies Ride Free is a new name for their 6th annual Guys Night Out, Girls Ride Free event: From January 9 – March 12, 2012, ladies ride free every Monday night starting at 6pm. Presented by Granville Island Brewery, Shred for the Cure is both a fundraiser for the BC Cancer Foundation and a great way to grab a group of friends, enjoy the slopes, and have fun, too. The Monday-night event includes food and drink specials at the Rock Chute Inn and nightly prize drawings at 9pm.

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Great Deals at Mount Seymour: Ladies Ride Free & Kids Ski Free Starting in January 2012