Whitewater BC, Conditions Report: Stop 3 on the Powder highway tour

Tom Gellie | | Conditions ReportConditions Report
Finding some fun hits on the backside
Finding some soft snow and fun hits on the backside near Face Plant.

After a great couple of days skiing at Red Mountain we made the short 1 hour drive to Nelson excited to ski Whitewater. There hasn’t been much snow in the last two weeks but this didn’t matter as what we found was good old fun steep tree skiing, amazing food and beautiful dry packed powder.

Carving into the clouds on the sweet snow on the backside of the mountain.
Carving into the clouds on the sweet snow on the backside of the mountain.

We spent the morning lapping the summit chair and the many tree runs off the top as there was a junior Freeski competition we could watch from the chair. We had full view of each competitors run down Blast from the chair ride up. One kid sent a huge air skipping three cliffs landing into the steepest section of the run. Very impressive. He took the win for the day. Whitewater is well know for its freeskiing terrain but they also do an excellent job of grooming. We made sure we rested the legs and ripped some fast laps in between hooking into the corduroy.

This young gun sent the triple cliff towards the top of the run, 360'd the road gap and the went massive almost hitting the chairs on the lift.
This young gun sent the triple cliff towards the top of the run, 360’d the road gap and the went massive off the bottom kicker almost hitting the chairs on the lift.

The best tree runs of the day were Terra Ratta, a cliff sectioned steep zone with chalky soft snow, and the Backside. We love the tree skiing at whitewater better than any other place We’ve visited. Today was one of those classic days were you ski fast and hit little double up bumps making your own ski cross track using the natural terrain. We managed to even find a small section of untracked powder without going out of bounds. Speaking with the locals the backcountry is fairly safe and still lots of untracked to be had so if you have the gear and the knowledge get out there.

Finding some fresh snow
Fresh snow and blue skies.

 

After skiing hard all morning we treated ourselves to some of the healthy gourmet food at the Fresh Tracks Cafe. We’re both bold enough to claim that as far as ski resort food goes Whitewater takes the crown. All freshly made and such a wide variety of options. Jenny went for the backside bowl and I had the coconut curry Ymir Bowl. As you can see from the picture the lunch spot on the deck is stunning with Ymir Peak in the background. The coffee is also top notch local company Oso Negro’s blend of beans.

Jenny enjoying her Backside Bowl Curry. Ymir Peak in the background.
Jenny enjoying her Backside Bowl Curry. Ymir Curry bowl in the foreground and Ymir Peak in the background.

Finishing up the trip we ventured to the edges of the resort boundary looking for softer lines and some interesting features to ride. I love that about whitewater, its a true free ride playground with hits in all directions. Watching the local kids ski here is truly inspiring as they get creative with all sorts of linked up hits and gaps over hazards. If you like that sort of skiing Whitewater can keep you grinning even if the snow gods have been asleep for a while.

Getting some inspiration from the young ones. Pretty tame compared to what they were hitting.
Getting some inspiration from the young ones. Pretty tame compared to what they were hitting.

 

So looking back on the third stop here are our top picks:

-Best coffee is………..everywhere in Nelson.

-Best food is the Whitewater cafe for lunch and the Red Light Ramen Bar in Nelson for dinner. Outside of Japan its the best Ramen we’ve had in a while.

-Unique local was Rudy and his skiing Parrot. Yes the parrot skis around the hill with him.

-Most memorable moment was arriving at our friend Dave’s Pimp house overlooking Nelson and the Lake knowing this was our digs for a few nights.

-To bring next time is touring gear so we can get out into the backcountry surrounding Whitewater and the area. We spotted dozens of people touring the ridges around us.

So tomorrow we hit the road to Kicking Horse stopping in at some hot springs to recoup and recharge. Yeehaaa.

Photo Tour

Beautiful day above the clouds
Beautiful day above the clouds
Great snow under the Glory Chair
Great snow under the Glory Chair
Easily Accessible out of bounds terrain if you have the gear. Can you say Pillows!
Easily Accessible out of bounds terrain if you have the gear. Can you say Pillows!
Jenny in the Enchanted Forest
Jenny in the Enchanted Forest.
This snowboarder was laying it over on the crisp groomers.
This snowboarder was laying it over on the crisp groomers.

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2 thoughts on “Whitewater BC, Conditions Report: Stop 3 on the Powder highway tour

  1. Great comments thank you
    I am a mountain host at Whitewater so many People we tour have the same feelings this one great place to ski

    1. Thanks for the nice article! I had the pleasure of skiing at Whitewater last winter (Feb 2016) and I absolutely loved it. In many ways it feels like a small area, but in reality it packs a big punch! And it is such a beautiful mountain with great views, as exemplified in your photos! I also happened to grab a day of cat skiing outside of Nelson with Valhalla Powdercats; now that was a blast. The whole area is really geared to suit the needs of true mountain skiers. And the locals are down to earth folks, really great hosts.

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