By Staff Writer Richard Irwin
The Kootenay mountains are famous for the light, dry snow the region gets. Red Mountain Ski Resort gets more than 300 inches of light powder annually. Add in its 2,919 feet of vertical and you’re talking lots of steep and deep.
Powder days are nearly every day at the ski resort located near Rossland, a scenic mining town in British Columbia. Red Mountain added another mountain this winter.
“Not only does the expansion increase Red’s skiable terrain by about 1,000 acres, it also adds wide terrain variety — from groomed cruising runs to tree glades and alpine chutes,” explained Chris Cushing of Snow Engineering Group, one of the ski resort industry’s design firms.
“This project is one of the most dramatic transformations of an existing major ski area that we’ve seen and it is one of the largest — if not the largest — single-season ski area expansion projects in North America in several decades,” Cushing added.
We decided to check out this hidden gem on a ski trip last year. It takes a little work getting to Red from Los Angeles, but it is well worth the effort.
First, we flew to Spokane, then jumped on a shuttle for a two-and-a-half-hour drive north across the border. Customs officials in Canada carefully checked our passports and questioned us about our ski trip. (Be sure all your travel documents are in order or you’re not getting in.)
Fortunately, the route proved easy to follow with no major mountain passes to negotiate in the softly falling snow. Soon we made it to the base of the mountain, where we were staying in the Slalom Creek condos.