North America’s best kept secret is out. SilverStar Mountain Resort is British Columbia’s 3rd largest resort, but has all the charm and easy access of an intimate village. From the colourful village to the pow pow, here’s 10 reasons why you need to ski SilverStar now!
It’s all natural. That’s right, it’s 100% the real deal, nothing man made, no snow makers, no chemicals. And on average, more than 700cm of fresh snow falls each season. We’re talking fresh powder baby!
2. It doesn’t get too cold
Unlike other Canadian resorts, the average daytime winter temperature sits at around -5 degrees Celsius. That’s substantially warmer than destinations like Banff and Lake Louise but still cold enough for the snow to stick around.
3. Ski in ski out
SilverStar village sits right in the middle of the skiable terrain, so you can ski in and out, no shuttle bus required. Hotels and lodges are clustered around the village, and are predominantly also ski in ski out. A shuttle bus runs around the apartments and houses further down the hill, and down to the nearby town of Vernon, but if you’re after easy access to the snow, this is the mountain for you.
4. Crowd free
It’s rare that you’ll wait at a chair lift for more than a minute or two, with crowds dispersing across the 3,282 skiable acres. There’s an uphill capacity of 14,000 skiers per hour but much of the time you’ll have the ski run to yourself. Sure, there might be a line at Bugaboos for freshly baked pastries, but even then there’s plenty of seats.
5. Village life
SilverStar’s picturesque village isn’t too dissimilar from what we imagine Santa’s North Pole to look like. Twinkling, snow-covered windows and brightly coloured facades turn this into a real Winter wonderland. There’s a cute old school lolly shop, quaint yet brightly coloured pubs and hotels like The Bulldog, and even activities like snow carving competitions. The local dogs bounding through the snow are just an extra cute bonus. With a mining history, the village certainly retains its old world charm.
6. More than just the ski runs
You don’t have to spend your entire day on your skis or snowboard. At SilverStar even the My1Pass day ticket includes access to fat bike trails (yes, on the snow), snowshoe trails, tubing and skating. The SilverStar Tube Town is a short walk from the village and is open until 9pm every night. There’s even a magic carpet so you don’t need to pull your tube up the mountain – very handy after a long day skiing. Twice a week On Mountain Yoga takes place in the Snowbird Lodge, excellent for a bit of post-ski stretching or meditation, there’s weekly trivia nights at the Red Antler, live music at The Den and ice skating, hockey and curling at Brewer’s Pond, a one-hectare natural skate rink. Did we mention the Pinheads Bowling lanes?
7. Family friendly
Whether you’ve got toddlers or teenagers, SilverStar has an excellent range of kids programs. There’s everything from day lessons to longer programs, with options for breakfast club (if you want to hit the snow early), pre-lesson day care, lunch and after ski activities like Bakeoffs, DIY Engineering and Science Lab.
8. Bear Claws and cinnamon buns
The bear claws at Bugaboos Bakery Café are legendary. Caramel, chocolate and cashews – in white, dark and milk chocolate – these are the perfect energy hit. If you can tear your eyes away from the freshly baked scones, cookies, cakes and pies. On the mountain, Paradise Camp is famous for its gigantic cinnamon buns. Served totally covered in sugar syrup, they are not to be missed.
9. Spa time
Brand new this season is the Elevate Spa, an Aveda Concept Spa where you’ll walk in, shed your winter woolies and bliss out for a few hours. The small spa right behind the main drag of the village is the perfect spot for a day off from skiing, or an afternoon easing your tired muscles. Book in advance for remedial massages.
10. A nice long season
Most years Silverstar’s season runs from late November until into April, and you’re still getting excellent coverage through March. This year, mid March still had a 260cm snow base and days with 2-5cm fresh snow.
Fly into Vancouver, and hop on a quick 45 minute flight to Kelowna. SilverStar is perched inside the Okanagan Valley, and is a 1 hour shuttle drive from Kelowna Airport past some of the famous Okanagan lakes.