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Old 08-17-2007, 02:45 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Big White, BC, Canada

I usually stick to the resorts on the Alberta side of the Canadian Rockies (Marmot, Sunshine, Norquay, etc) but decided to hit Big White in BC for a week. Wow! Big White is like Disneyland for snowboarders. The snow was non-stop huge ass flakes and settled down in a silky powder. By the time you got back up from the chairlifts, the snow had covered the tracks from the last run...eternal virgin. But the resort can white completely out during a snowstorm and you will be forced to find your way to base using yellow poles that are set up everywhere. Stick with them or you are going off a cliff unintentionally (guilty!). This place is huge! I stayed at the SameSun hostel on the mountain ($25 Canadian a night) and the people and staff there were awesome, even with putting up with my drunk Canadian antics (sorry all you Aussies, and thanks!). Do yourself a favour and hit Big White.
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Old 08-19-2007, 09:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hey Snowolf! How's it going?! SB.com has just gone totally weird...again. Good to see some good postings on this new site from you. I have not hit Fernie yet but soon; looks like a total playground to say the least!
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Old 08-20-2007, 12:16 AM   #3 (permalink)
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they will be waiting for you at the border mdp, better leave your "vegtables" at home. its about 6 to 8 hours from seattle to big white give or take. the borders arent that bad getting into canada, going back to the states always seems to be harder. they can be busy both ways especially on weekends.
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Old 08-20-2007, 04:59 AM   #4 (permalink)
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it is kinda weird that a euro-limey like me has been to both these places! and yet you 'locals' have not!

Big White, is a nice family based place, that is prone to utter white outs, hence the name. lots of tree lined runs and mellow, roller runs. a nice place for sure, but not very demanding, other than the cliff, especially if you hike around the bowl a bit from the chair lift. nice pistes tho; good for the french ski tema to do their high spped carnage!

fernie tho, is big arse, big mountain. lots of well serviced bowls and an absolute treat for anyone loving the steep and deep. the parks in both are about as good as each other; not great, but not crappy.....

basically, for family fun and good night life, go BW. (but be sure to check your hotel bill on checking out! i stayed at The Inn and the aussies there, tried to charge me over $100 for one ONE pitcher of beer. when i said that don't look right, they said they knew i would question it! basically, they KNOWINGLY tried to con me!!!! how's that for customer service!? oh and another aussie tried to close the bar on us one night at about 9.30pm coz she wanted to go home!)

for hardcore killing it on the steeps, fernie all the way. i hear their night life ain't too bad, but seeing as i stayed in the actual town of fernie, rather than the places at the base of the hill, i was a slave to the last bus home, which rediculously, was as early as 5pm! that's a loss of many beer bucks IMO!
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Old 08-20-2007, 08:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Good review, Paolo!
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Old 08-20-2007, 11:19 AM   #6 (permalink)
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cheers guv!

this year i am hoping to go japanesy for chrimbo (altho the missus had italian based plans i fear) but come the new year, say late Jan, i might be looking towards whistlerville. anyone up for that?
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Old 08-20-2007, 11:29 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I won't be hitting Whistler this upcoming season. Other than the usual (Marmot, Sunshine, etc) I'll try and make it back to Big White again, Kicking Horse for certain, and perhaps Castle Mountain. Fernie is a possibility as it is only an extra couple of hours to reach. Might do the Downhill Riders thing to Kicking Horse to avoid driving down Roger's Pass myself (better to get completly drunk and let a complete stranger driving a bus full of deviants do it instead).
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Old 08-22-2007, 05:51 AM   #8 (permalink)
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you mean at fernie snowolf? coz Big white is proper treelined and family orientated.

fernie has got lots of good scary shit in bounds, so back country might not even get touched! but for sure, there are many higher hikes to climb up to.

it can be pretty sketchy terrain, so at the very least you need to tell the patrol where you're heading to and be fully avy kitted up (which i am sure you always are) with a gang of other adventurers ready and able to dig you out, should dragons come calling.

tis an exciting place for sure! i would go again.
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Old 08-26-2007, 11:11 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Big White is quite nice. From the point of view of mild powder it might be the best place I've been to in Canada. Like Paolo said it's nice and organized and to the most extent it's a ski in/ski out for the entire village of Big White. They have a gondola whose sole purpose is to connect lower village with upper village. The entire resort just feels very integrated. They also have night skiing which a weekly pass fully covers and from what I've seen the lit up runs are quite nice (long and wide). Nightlife is not as good as Whistler but fairly decent - you'll find things to do.

Since someone's mentioned Fernie let me sound my personal "meh". Fernie might have good powder (not great), but in general it felt a bit small and disorganized. The runs are not very varied (although the park was good), and not too many treelines and chutes. Infrastructure is OK, the village itself is somewhat far from the lifts so you have to take a bus to most places. In general I didn't feel too festive being there.
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