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Revelstoke questions

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Friends, I plan to use Skican to book a week in Alberta or BC. I keep coming back to Revelstoke as the most attractive and interesting option. And one of the cheapest. Package that includes flights from Boston to Calgary, rental car for a week, five of six day tix and accomodations all for $1210 US.
So a few questions:
1. Is there enough interemedaite terrain for a week? My wife is a solid advanced intermediate but would feel most comfortable on blue groomers. Living in Maine teaches you to ski on the snow, not in it. Her ideal trail would be packed pow. I would really like to get some big bowl skiing in. Never done it.
2. How is the ski school? We went to Whistler four years ago and spent three days in their Ski Esprit program - basically you ski with an instructer and the same group all day. It was a lot of fun and very instructional. I would like to do a few days of that and then ski free for a couple
3. Travel logistics - The flight arrives on Sunday in Calgary, presumably in the late afternoon or evening. You then collect the car and drive what I understand is about five hours to Revelstoke. Ski Mon to Fri. Then drive back to Calgary on Sat and fly out Sunday. How is that five hour drive from Calgary to Revelstoke and is it silly to think it can be done by newbies in the dark? I have heard that it traverses some rugged territory and can is subject to closure for avalanches. True?
Appreciate any personal insight you might have. I am not wedded to Revelstoke. If y'all have other suggestions in the vicinity (KH, LL, Banf, Red Mountain, etc) I am all ears.
Much obliged.
David
post #2 of 15
I believe the tree line at Revelstoke that's lift-serviced is a lot higher than other Canadian resorts.
post #3 of 15
Yes the tree line is higher in Revelstoke. It's a warmer but much snowier climate than Kicking Horse on the other side of Rogers Pass.

Depending on how late you get to Calgary, I would question the wisdom of that 5-hour drive with Rogers Pass at the end of it too late at night. Kelowna is the better gateway airport about 2 hours from Revelstoke. I think Kelowna works better for you and your wife, because you have Big White there which is an excellent intermediate groomer area. Apex and Silver Star are also nearby.

The major areas between Calgary and Revelstoke (Kicking Horse and Lake Louise) are also advanced-weighted in terrain distribution. Sunshine would be the best area for an intermediate on the Calgary route.
post #4 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiking4 View Post
I believe the tree line at Revelstoke that's lift-serviced is a lot higher than other Canadian resorts creating less open bowl skiing.
But you still got a massive vertical! It'll take you 45 minutes though to get down to the base from the summit! (considering an intermediate's perspective)
post #5 of 15
I made the drive from Calgary to Kicking Horse at night. We had good weather with bright moonshine so it was really pretty easy, but I would not want to do that in bad weather.

If there was any way to switch your flight to an earlier time I would do it. Or maybe you could stay in Banff your first night, ski Sunshine the first day and then make your way to Revelstoke.
post #6 of 15
First, I'll say that I have not skied at Revelstoke myself, but living in the area and skiing at other resorts, I have had numerous conversations with people who ski there frequently. The word I have received is that it is not well suited for intermediates, especially those who prefer piste/trail skiing. The experience at Revelstoke is geared towards skiers who prefer steeps, trees and off-piste, although they have a limited number of runs for intermediates (see the trail map on their website). The notion of using the ski school to develop a higher confidence level and familiarity with the hill is a good idea.

As for the highway from Calgary to Revy, it is not an easy or predictable drive in winter. Mostly, it's ok, but it's an old twisty highway with lots of truck traffic. Road closures due to avalanches are infrequent but always possible. Definitely advised for daytime driving vs. end of day.

I agree with Tony's suggestion about Kelowna with Big White and Silver Star to warm up for Revelstoke. The alternatives of Sunshine and Lake Louise are good, too.
post #7 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alberto View Post
I agree with Tony's suggestion about Kelowna with Big White and Silver Star to warm up for Revelstoke. The alternatives of Sunshine and Lake Louise are good, too.
Word.
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
Appreciate the suggestions. Big White is looking strong, particularly witht he ski in/out accomodations. What about Sun Peaks? The trail map looks a bit more interesting than Big White. Not much about it on the forum.
post #9 of 15
ski school is NOT AT ALL like whistler. reve is a small town, skiers mountain. Think more like bridger bowl and less like vail.

Calgary to reve is 5+ hours assuming good open roads. I have seen in take 8-10 or days if the road is closed.

banff has 3 different areas, plus day trips to panorama and kicking horse. bigger town, more acc'm, food, non-skiing options, no car needed, easy bus shuttle from calgary to banff.

www.banffadventures.com for lots of booking options
post #10 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by deliberate1 View Post
Appreciate the suggestions. Big White is looking strong, particularly witht he ski in/out accomodations. What about Sun Peaks? The trail map looks a bit more interesting than Big White. Not much about it on the forum.
I've not been to Big White but I've been to Sun Peaks and Silver Star (companion mountain to Big White) several times each. For blue groomers, both mountains have an abundance. For more advanced terrain, Silver Star takes the prize. The Putnam Creek area is for real. Steep, varied, shaded for better snow quality, it is a delight for the experienced skier.

The Sun Peaks base area is a mini-Whistler, and the Siver Star base is in a Mining Town motif and is smaller and more intimate than SP.

Siver Star caters to families with an ice skating pond and a tubing hill that are both lit at night while Sun Peaks has a tubing hill and a public pool.

Both Kamloops and Vernon have all of the amenities that people need, including lodging. Vernon is closer to SS (20 minutes) than Kamloops is to SP (45 minutes). Kelowna airport is closer to SS and has more flights. Kamloops' airport is further from SP and has less flights.

My personal bias is toward Siver Star because of its expert terrain and more intimate setting. You would have a great time at either place.
post #11 of 15

There are some good gladed areas and there sections of each mountain with some good steeps. I enjoy Big White as well, although I'd make similar comments about the terrain. Certainly, from my observation and from the many comments made by visiting skiers, Sun Peaks is often well regarded because of the village design and the overall experience. Truthfully, I think you would enjoy any of the three interior BC ski areas mentioned (Sun Peaks, Silver Star, Big White).


Edited by Alberto - 11/2/11 at 6:29pm
post #12 of 15

Revvy review

Ok. I'll try and give a bit of a revvy perspective for you. Terrain. Its a big mountain. But there aren't many lifts. Lots of vert, with a few traverses. I'd say that for the most part, the cut runs are easy to difficult blues (even many of the blacks). If you can have a look at the trail map, the bottom half of the mountain is pretty chilled. The north bowl blues are all groomed, and they are some of the funnest groomers I've skied. Lots of rollers, enough steepness to make them interesting, but they're still groomers, so nice and predictable. So I think that there is definately enough terrain to keep your wife interested.

Ski school is (as noted) not whistler. Head of the snow school Dan Skulnik (not sure of spelling) is awesome, and the group he has is a good bunch. There are, however, only 11 ski pros. I don't think that there are any organised programs such as you are describing, but best bet would be to call the school and ask for details. Super helpful people.

The drive from Calgary is not overly pleasant. its 5 hours min in winter. more if there is snow. and there are avalanche closures. but in defense, they are really good with keeping the roads open.

hope that helps

b
post #13 of 15
Thread Starter 
Friends, I really appreciate your great help. I think maybe I will do one of the combination trips from Skican and spend three at Sun and four at Silver. And Revvy next year.So much fun. So many choices. So little time.
David
post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by deliberate1 View Post
Friends, I really appreciate your great help. I think maybe I will do one of the combination trips from Skican and spend three at Sun and four at Silver. And Revvy next year.So much fun. So many choices. So little time.
David
Good choices. You should have a great time. Enjoy!
post #15 of 15
You may want to consider flying into Kelowna. Then it is a 2 hour ride to Revy. We skied the hill last year and would STRONGLY recommend it. I ski Fernie Alpine Resort (20 years) and will be moving to Revelstoke in a year due to the increasing bad management of the hill, etc. etc.
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