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Valemount, BC--New Ski Area Proposes to Have Biggest Vert in N. America - Page 2

post #31 of 49

Problem with Marmot is they pretty much get no snow... I imagine there will be some traffic from Prince George... people from Edmonton drive to Revelstoke, and Valemont is closer.

 

I can see the hype and appeal moving from Revelstoke to Valemount as the developers and owners of RMR have looked for every excuse to invest as little money as possible in growth and infrastructure, which has really held back the potential of the mountain.

post #32 of 49

Edmonton is the closest large population to Valemount and it is probably about a 6 hour drive in winter. And while Valemount is farther from Edmonton than Marmot ski area (Jasper), it is closer to Edmonton than Lake Louise or Sun Peaks which normally do get some Edmonton skier visits.

 

Edmonton is the gateway to the Alberta oil fields, so while some real estate sales to Edmonton skiers is possible, the current depressed price of oil has killed oil exploration and likely purchasing of second homes by many Edmonton skiers along with it.

 

As far as an international airport for Valemount, to sum up Albertaskigirls early post: It is not going to happen.

 

The regional airport in Kamloops (under an hour from Sun Peaks) can handle jet aircraft and services about 150k people in the immediate region and while the building of Sun Peaks has caused an increase in air traffic, there are still no direct flights from Canada's 2 largest cities, Toronto and Montreal. There are a noticeable number of Seattle skiers who have second homes at Sun Peaks (about a 6 hour drive) and a few years ago Sun Peaks paid a subsidy to Horizon Air to provide winter time flights out of Seattle to Kamloops. It was not sustainable and was cancelled after a couple of seasons. So even an expanded regional airport for Valemount is probably not viable or the expansion will be linited and not able to deliver enough skiers.

post #33 of 49
Just mulling the possibility there are destination vacationers for whom the remoteness is part of the appeal; getting away from the crowds both on and off the slopes. Maybe the long drive to get to
Valemount isn't any more a deterrent than getting stuck in I-70 traffic from Denver to Breck or Vail. Just thinking out loud.

Also, should climate change actually change to the degree that it would negatively impact the viability of many current resorts (it is estimated that the mostly-horrible season much of the west of North American experienced in '14-'15 is a sample of what the winter climate will be in 70 years), then having skiing at remote places like Valemount and (dare I say it) Jumbo may be what we have.
post #34 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by DesiredUsername View Post

Just mulling the possibility there are destination vacationers for whom the remoteness is part of the appeal; getting away from the crowds both on and off the slopes. Maybe the long drive to get to
Valemount isn't any more a deterrent than getting stuck in I-70 traffic from Denver to Breck or Vail. Just thinking out loud.

Also, should climate change actually change to the degree that it would negatively impact the viability of many current resorts (it is estimated that the mostly-horrible season much of the west of North American experienced in '14-'15 is a sample of what the winter climate will be in 70 years), then having skiing at remote places like Valemount and (dare I say it) Jumbo may be what we have.

Makes me think of Aspen and JH.  When those places were starting out, how many daily flights were there?  In particular for Aspen, how many daily flights when Snowmass was in the planning stages?

 

Of course, the Canadian Rockies is a lot different than places in the U.S. Rockies for Americans who live east of the Mississippi.  But perhaps there are folks from Australia/NZ or Europe who would be interested.  I get the impression that Aussies tend to do ski trips that are 2-3 weeks in North America, including families.

 

As for summer vacations, the idea of getting away from crowded U.S. national parks out west can be of interest to folks in New York City.  The adventurous families who can get away for 3-4 weeks can even drive.  I say that from personal experience growing up in NYC since my father was a professor who didn't teach during the summer.  We drove all the way out on CN1 after crossing at Buffalo.

post #35 of 49

That's all true..but can they make enough to keep the lifts turning from that?  I mean, there are already ski resorts that are somewhat financially challenged.  I get the low crowd thing..I love that aspect and would probably drive a few hours..but how many would?  Dunno.  I hope it gets up and running and it's good and hopefully it's the anti-Whistler..

post #36 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott43 View Post
 

That's all true..but can they make enough to keep the lifts turning from that?  I mean, there are already ski resorts that are somewhat financially challenged.  I get the low crowd thing..I love that aspect and would probably drive a few hours..but how many would?  Dunno.  I hope it gets up and running and it's good and hopefully it's the anti-Whistler..

 

Both Castle and Whitewater are already the undeveloped anti-Whistler and even the developed resorts in the B.C, interior are uncrowded and easier to get to and are mostly not visited by Americans or Europeans.

post #37 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanoT View Post
 

 

Both Castle and Whitewater are already the undeveloped anti-Whistler and even the developed resorts in the B.C, interior are uncrowded and easier to get to and are mostly not visited by Americans or Europeans.


Good points.  Are there enough customers to keep Valemount going?  I mean, it would have to be a destination..something would have to set it apart.

post #38 of 49

Looking at Valemount on Google Earth, there is a lake that stretches from Golden to Valemount, almost in a straight line.  They could have a Kicking Horse - Valemount ferry!

post #39 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Posaune View Post
 

Looking at Valemount on Google Earth, there is a lake that stretches from Golden to Valemount, almost in a straight line.  They could have a Kicking Horse - Valemount ferry!

 

Kinbasket Lake is a man made lake created as a result of (I think) the Mica Dam. The ferry would probably need some ice breaking capability and an all day trip. On a clear day it would be great scenery and in extremely remote country. The cost would probably be prohibitive.

post #40 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanoT View Post
The ferry would probably need some ice breaking capability and an all day trip. On a clear day it would be great scenery and in extremely remote country. The cost would probably be prohibitive.

Exactly!  It would be spectacular, but it's too much.  Just like the rest of the project from my humble view.

post #41 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanoT View Post
 

 

Kinbasket Lake is a man made lake created as a result of (I think) the Mica Dam. The ferry would probably need some ice breaking capability and an all day trip. On a clear day it would be great scenery and in extremely remote country. The cost would probably be prohibitive.

 

Does it freeze solid? Maybe a snowmobile tour between the two on the lake? 

post #42 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbostedo View Post
 

 

Does it freeze solid? Maybe a snowmobile tour between the two on the lake? 


Freezes over I suspect..don't freeze solid.  Ice fishing along the way??  :D

post #43 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Posaune View Post
 

Exactly!  It would be spectacular, but it's too much.  Just like the rest of the project from my humble view.


Yeah..I kinda think so too. 

post #44 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Posaune View Post
 

Looking at Valemount on Google Earth, there is a lake that stretches from Golden to Valemount, almost in a straight line.  They could have a Kicking Horse - Valemount ferry!


The distance is 115 miles, way too long IMHO even in summer.  The existing much shorter B.C. ferries already take half an hour at Arrow Lake south of Revelstoke and 45 minutes at Kootenay Lake east of Nelson.  Kinbaskset Lake is mostly frozen in winter. I've had the occasional bird's eye view flying into Chatter Creek.

 

I just pinned the proposed area on my Worldwide Ski Map Google Earth kml file.  It's exactly between the town of Valemount and the Cariboo Lodge.

post #45 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott43 View Post
 


Freezes over I suspect..don't freeze solid.  Ice fishing along the way??  :D

 

Oh...yeah... that's what I meant. I didn't expect it would actually be solid the whole way down.

 

Still, it's 120 miles, so I guess you'd need to haul a-- to make it in a reasonable time... doesn't seem do-able unless you want to camp and ice-fish... which would actually be a really cool trip, but would take too much time away from skiing! :cool

post #46 of 49
Hmm... Just for fun, mapped the time and distance from my house to Valemount, about 7 hours 15 minutes. That's 3 hours closer than Jumbo would have been. Also, closer than Mt Bachelor, closer than Sun Valley, much closer than Targhee and Jackson. It's about 5 hours for me to drive to Sun Peaks, 6 hours for me to drive to Schweitzer, about 7 to drive to Red or Whitewater, 6 1/2 hours to Revelstoke, 9+ hours to Banff.

So it makes more sense for me to hit up Valemount, either on its own or with a stop at Sun Peaks, than to go anywhere else, other than Whistler. Assuming of course that's it's a road trip rather than flying somewhere.

I say, go ahead and build the damn thing.
post #47 of 49

I also doubt this is going to happen soon but then look at how fast Kicking Horse and Revy became a destination.

Both were very small local hills until each got just one big gondola.

Everything changed overnight. 

 

I know a few people living in Valemont who are pretty excited at the possibility of being that next Golden or Revelstoke.

Unlike Jumbo there is less opposition. Seems unlikely any of them will make much money soon but neither have any of the other ski areas in BC in initial decades of operation. A lot of them have gone broke at some point or other and all started with pretty limited facilities

post #48 of 49
It's not only the day skiers but it also has corporate intrest. A lot of organizations head to chile for summer training, some of that training could now be done easier and cheaper in Valmont. All it really takes is a gondola, day lodge and a few good runs to get going.
post #49 of 49

I'd be happy if it worked.  I'll do the drive, no problem.  So fingers crossed for me!  :D

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