Flake-filled skiers’ RV dream trip along the Powder Highway

Flake-filled skiers’ RV dream trip along the Powder Highway

Breadcrumb Trail Links Relax Travel RV. Photo by Powder Matt Mosteller

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Some say “acting happily” is one of the tools for being happy, but my personal approach is to take action on the trips that are on your “someday we’ll make it” list. Happiness just follows. Time is valuable. As wild, fanatical skiers, we recently followed this mantra and embarked on an RV road trip from Calgary, Alberta to our destination in British Columbia—the Powder Highway, to be exact. Who wants a posh all-inclusive when a skier’s do-it-yourself dream trip on wheels awaits? Just yourself, the motorhome and large mountain landscapes in all their snowflake splendor.

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Ski hut on wheels

We took this ski safari to the road in CanaDream RV’s winterized maxi motorhome. The journey started effortlessly with an incredibly easy online check-in and pickup process, so we set out in search of plenty of powder turns. The camper has all the essential systems to keep you warm including a highly efficient stove. Add some big, comfy blankets for a warm night’s sleep, and don’t worry about running out of power since you’ve got four batteries for plenty of juice in reserve. We’re coffee nuts, so we hooked up this espresso machine for that morning mocha at the slopes to get us going for skiing. Although the weather turned cold, the camper kept us nice and warm so we could fully enjoy the deep snow, complete with the first tracks! In short, this home on wheels has everything you need to make the most of the slopes, from ski storage and three large sleeping areas to flushing toilets, a sound system and a fully equipped kitchen. With weekly rentals starting at $175 per night, you can’t beat the price either.

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Article Contents Views galore from the ski slopes of the Kimberley Alpine Resort. Photo by Powder Matt Mosteller

distance counts

Excited from chasing snow in the Canadian Rockies, we followed live weather updates from the crew at OpenSnow. Ideally, this trip begins with pickup at Calgary International Airport, then we head west to one of Canada’s largest ski resorts, Kicking Horse Mountain Resort. About a three hour drive from Calgary, this mountain playground has the fifth tallest vertical in North America and more slides than any other ski area in the country. We split the drive so your maximum leg is 4.5 hours, next almost three hours, with a stop to swim at Radium Hot Springs. From Kicking Horse in Golden, BC we made a pit stop along the route to our next location and my goodness did we ever make our move there. Take a break in Invermere and stretch your legs with a skate on Western Canada’s longest ice rink, the Lake Windermere Whiteway, before rolling into the Kimberley Alpine Resort. This magical mountain has long fall lines through Canada’s most forested terrain. When it came time to take off, we took off with powder dreams to make our next stop at Fernie Alpine Resort – and we timed it perfectly. Return to Calgary via the scenic Cowboy and Ranch Route. As a reminder, sipping freshies in most of the bowls in the Canadian Rockies was the perfect way to cap off this offbeat trip. By the way, this route is “epic friendly” because the EpicPass is good at each of these ski resorts we’ve visited.

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Cover of the Article 5 Spring Outdoor Adventures in and Around the Canadian Rockies Get Out in the Cold while Camping Top Six for Beginning Snowshoeing in the Canadian Rockies Classic Views of the Canadian Rockies, Fernie, BC Photo by Powder Matt Mosteller

Enjoy your meal

Following the blizzards and non-stop skiing will make you hungry. While many prefer crisp, clear, sunny days, we were looking for some powder snow that really whets the appetite. Here’s a foodie highlight from every city as you shred fresh along British Columbia’s Powder Highway.

Golden, British Columbia – Try Canada’s tallest restaurant, Eagles Eye Restaurant, atop Kicking Horse Mountain Resort. Also in town are Bacchus Books & Cafe, Bluebird Cafe and the new Wandering Fern Cafe.

Kimberley, British Columbia – Check out the coffee at Kickturn Coffee Roasters. Restaurants abound, check out Biscuit Supper, Pedal and Tap, Stonefire Pizzeria or Old Farmhouse Restaurant. Afterwards head to The Shed or Grist and Mash for a well deserved pint.

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Fernie, British Columbia – Dinner on the Mountain sounds good? Head over to the Cirque Restaurant for a great view while you dine. When in town, Yamagoya is always a treat, as well as Bramasole Restaurant and Wine Bar. For killer coffee head to Rooftop Coffee Roasters.

Chasing storms and following snow

We used a mix of mountain weather forecasts from different sources and then checked what OpenSnow had to say. After making our forecasts, we tried to find the best possible day for storm ski snow.

Good gear to enjoy those starry nights

Black Diamond Legend Gloves served us well throughout the trip while shoveling snow off the door and were perfect for hitting the slopes. We encountered a cold front en route, but Outdoor Research’s Super Alpine Down Parka came in handy for keeping the chill out. On these sunny days, Smith Optics’ Shift MAG kept an eye on the road. We threw in a Black Diamond shovel and always carried a pair of Lacrosse Outpost 2 winter boots to deal with slush and dirt in the parking lots. On evening cross-country rides, the Black Diamond Sprinter 500 Headlamp was a great help in illuminating our trail routes. Skip the cup of soup for nibbles – we’ve packed Pad Thai, delicious, easy-to-prep food from Backpackers Pantry.

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