Guest post by Karl Nelson (thanks Karl!)
If you’re new, don’t have a car and are worried about passes, just get the Grouse Mountain Limited Early Pass if you are reading this before the discount ends on Nov 30.
If you have a car, consider Cypress Mountain, but please make sure you have winter tires (I won’t help dig you out when your car gets stuck in the snow – I will wave as I go passed though), the discount for Silver passes ends Sep 30 for Cypress.
All the local mountains are open ‘til 10pm daily during peak season, usually from December – April(ish). Grouse typically stays open a little longer than the rest of the resorts. By that point the season is usually pretty dead, but if you just want to ride/hit the park Grouse may be a better option for you.
Obviously, if you are closer to one mountain vs another you may not need this guide!
Full Season pass price : $825
Limited Early Bird Price : $349 (ends until Nov 30)
If you don’t have a car this would most likely be the best option for you. You can take public transport all the way to the bottom of the gondola. Get the Limited Early Bird pass, which is a new type of pass for Grouse. Keep in mind that you will have to pay if you go on the weekends in Jan and Feb, and also between Christmas and New Years (discounted I’m sure). To be completely honest it’s a gong show at any of the locals during those days and are they are probably worthwhile avoiding.
There is also the Y2Play pass that goes on sale around March/April, which is a full season pass for the next season. It is usually between $300 and $400.
View this post on Instagram
G8 Pass : $699
Silver Pass $369 (ends until Sep 30, but you can get it for $319 with discount code)
If you have a car, I recommend Cypress. It’s around a 30-40 minute drive from downtown Vancouver. I find there’s more runs to hit up on Cypress, more secret powder stashes that people don’t know about and so I prefer Cypress.
Get the Silver pass, like the Limited Early Bird from Grouse. Again, you can’t use it on weekends in Jan, Feb and between Christmas and New Years. There was a discount code posted in the Kiwis on Vancouver Facebook group that gives you another $40 off, see below!
Here are the discount details:
- Access the online account here.
- Login –
- Browse the passes & pick the one(s) you want.
- Enjoy all the fresh mountain air and snowy slopes you can!
The G8 Pass includes a bunch of free things such as discounts on lessons and rentals, and reciprocal discounts with other partner resorts. It costs a bit more though, but if you’re keen go for it.
You can catch a bus up to Cypress. It costs $10+ and runs at a schedule until 10pm daily, or you can get a season pass for the bus if you want to use this mode of transport frequently.
View this post on Instagram
Season pass price : $359 (ends until Sep 30)
In previous years, I would recommend getting a pass at Seymour to people who are new to Vancouver. However, with Grouse having the new limited pass, I would suggest getting that instead. Seymour is still a fantastic mountain with great terrain, and it is smallest out of all the local mountains. It’s just not as easy to get to (easier than Cypress though without a car).
However, if you’re only wanting to go up on the weekends in Jan / Feb, this is the best and cheapest option.
You can get to the bottom of the mountain by public transportation, then pick up the Seymour bus at A&W in Park Gate Village. It costs a few dollars there and back, and runs at a schedule until the mountain closes. Or you can thumb it up and hitch up the hills as there are heaps of drivers who are more than happy to drive you up.
There is also a Ladies Ski Free on Monday nights (please check the website for details or if they still offer this). And of course, there is a trail next to the resort for snow-shoeing and backcountry access.
Mountains within 2-3 hours
If it’s your first year, you should consider getting an Edge card. Be warned though that Whistler can get very busy and expensive, and expect be line ups during on weekends, unless you go during the week or are there the first few weeks after New Years.
You can take the bus from Vancouver pretty easily through a number of options: Epic Rides, Snow Bus, Whistler rides, and the Greyhound.
If you are getting a season pass at Whistler, look at the Epic pass as you get access to a lot of resorts, however most of them are in the states (Stevens pass is quite close however!). If you plan on travelling around the states this may be the best option!
Day passes at Whistler are crazy expensive $150+ from the ticket booth. You can get discounts by buying early. If you love Whistler you’ve probably already got a season pass which can make it pretty reasonable to go there. It is an amazing mountain!
From Vancouver, you will need a car, a passport and a valid ESTA! Mt Baker is down in Washington and is around 2-2.5 hours by car. Day trips are definitely doable. If you do so, leave Vancouver as early as 5:30-6:00 am (this is driving from downtown Vancouver) to beat the lines at the Sumas border. There is no accommodation at the mountain but you can do a weekend and stay at the nearest town 30min away in Glacier, WA.
It’s great place to go, tonnes of pow, not as busy, local vibe, and very chill crowd. It is reasonably priced at $60 USD for a day pass, which is around $80 CAD.
Never go here 😉 , tell everyone it’s horrible.
View this post on Instagram
Who’s looking forward to days like this? Come get your 2018-19 season pass at our lowest prices of the season now at our NEW Droppin’ In rate before Oct. 1st. If you miss that you can take advantage of our Still Savin’ discount up until Nov. 2nd when preseason rates end. Visit our website for details and be sure to check out some more of the best times from last season encapsulated in ‘The Speed Of Fun’ a microsite by @thesnowboardersjournal up on our snow report. Winter is on its way! Photo: @colin_wise_man Rider: @timmytaussig #therealmtbaker #mtbakerskiarea #mtbaker
These hills are fun and they are a lot smaller than Baker or Whistler. They are around 2-2.5 hours away and are a lot quieter but harder to get to as you will need a car to get to them. The chairs are pretty old but there are some great hidden gems in the hills.
View this post on Instagram
⏰THE COUNTDOWN IS ON⏰ Starting Monday March 19th you can purchase your 2018/2019 Seasons Pass at the Early Bird Rate! . It’s the most affordable rates out there for a full season of fun at Sasquatch Mountain Resort! . Check out our Website for more information about what to expect for next season including the link to our e-store where you can purchase and upload your photo from home and information on a NEW GENERATOR! ?: @samroberts.3 . . . #sasquatchmountainresort #fantasticfamilyfun #sale #earlybirdsale #seasonspass #ski #snow #snowboard #fraservalley #explorebc
Hit up the Kiwis in Van group! I’ve only recently got into splitboarding, still learning areas to go to and have really only done short tours around Revelstoke, and Mt Seymour, and will be doing a bit more of this in the coming season. Make sure you have your AST 1 (Avalanche Safety Training) as its pretty gnarly out there!
The Rest of BC and Beyond
For the rest of the mountains around BC and beyond, you’ll need a car or a friend to drive you. There are mountains such as Sun Peaks, Big White, Silverstar, Mt Baldy, Apex which are around 4+ hours away drive. Revelstoke, Whitewater, Red Mountain, Kicking Horse, Fernie are 8 hrs+ away.
These hills are amazing not as busy as Whistler and the Powder is drier and amazing. If you make it out to them, the weekends can get a bit busy but I would recommend doing more than just the weekend, or a roadtrip to hit them up. Whenever I’ve been they have been nothing compared to a week day on Whistler.
Yes, there are a lot more that I have missed out. You can’t really go wrong with the mountains around BC if your just going for a day. All of them are great depending on the how much snow has fallen of course. I definitely have had epic snow days on most of these mountains so check out snow forecast for the list of BC resorts.
Can’t wait for the season to start, not long now!