It’s only nearly Halloween but many folks around the region are celebrating first snows and the steady accumulation of fresh snow up high. The countdown is officially on!
The dreaming about fresh tracks has begun… now it’s just a matter of how you’re going to make it actually happen. #Yourbetterlife combines supreme ski and snowboarding in one of the most beautiful, and still mostly hidden, gems on the continent while you make a living, make great new friends and enjoy a deep-rooted sense of community.
Here’s how: The Powder Highway. This incredible pocket of some of the world’s best powder located right here in our own Kootenay Rockies and has been making the news for quite some time now. And, remarkably, it’s still relatively undiscovered.
Looping 1,000 kilometres through the south-east corner of British Columbia this renowned powder route offers unique, historic and, in some cases, delightfully funky communities along with arguably the highest concentration of skiing in the world. There are no fewer than 60 resorts, heli-ski, backcountry touring, cat-ski, and cross-country destinations more than happy to welcome you as part of their team.
Here in the southeast corner of British Columbia, the Powder Highway, or Route 95A as it’s also known, connects seven incredible and diverse ski resorts. Certainly, choose one and ski it all season and you’ll be a pretty happy camper, but they’re close enough that you can pack up for a few weekends and succeed and checking three or four off the ol’ bucket list.
In addition to the free skiing that you’ll naturally enjoy working at one of these fabulous resorts, there’s also a number of other perks afforded to employees. From food, beverage and retail discounts to super employee friendly room rate deals, if you’re working at one of these exceptional destinations, the powder pickings become just that much easier… what’s your pleasure?
FERNIE SKI RESORT
Averaging 37 feet of snowfall in any given winter, Fernie Alpine Resort, offers 2,500-plus skiable acres. This is any powder-hound’s dream! Enjoy plenty of (nearly) untouched powder in this spectacular ski and snowboard playground with five bowls, endless ridges and sheltered glades. Fernie, the village – voted the “friendliest place on earth” by GreatOutdoors.com – is a historic little gem where you will no doubt spend plenty of time at the favorite local watering hole, The Brickhouse, which you might recall from Hot Tub Time Machine.
Fernie Alpine Resort is “hiring for personality” so bring your customer service and team player A-game! They are gearing up for the winter season so there’s plenty available from the ticket office, to ski patrol and snowmaking to kitchen positions. They’re also hosting a full-on Job Fair this weekend, so if you’re wanting some serious small town charm along with world class snow, get thyself to Fernie – NOW!
KIMBERLEY SKI RESORT
Moving west on the Powder Highway circuit brings you to another historic and scenic mountain village, British Columbia’s highest town, the Bavarian City of the Rockies, Kimberley. Kimberley Ski Resort is one of the most accessible resorts on the Powder Highway, located just 30 minutes from Canadian Rockies International Airport (YXC).
This mountain, located right near town, boasts 80 runs and 1,800 acres of skiable terrain, including the expert skier paradise, Black Forest. If you’re not a skier but looking to work and live in a winter wonderland nevertheless, Kimberley offers endless activities including dog sledding, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling and helicopter tours.
Kimberley Ski Resort, too, has a winter job fair coming up on November 5th, where they will be recruiting for any number of exciting and challenging positions. If you can’t make it there in person, be sure to find more information HERE to apply.
Having undergone a terrifically successful rebranding the village is enjoying something of a resurgence, both in retail and gastronomy. The Platzl, once famous for it’s Alps-ian appeal, is drawing the public once more with great shopping as well as great eats with restaurants and pubs such as the Pedal and Tap, Heartbeet Bistro and Stonefire Pizzeria.
PANORAMA SKI RESORT
Heading up Highway 93/95 you’ll find yourself at quaint and scenic Invermere and, deep into the Purcells, Panorama Mountain Village. Aiming to be a leader as a family destination and considered a “smaller resort” it still provides world-class services and amenities. While not quite the snow machine that Fernie can brag, they receive up to 15 feet of snow annually and offer 2,800 acres of skiable terrain, nonetheless.
Exceptional double-black diamond trees, access to heli-skiing and wide-open, groomed boulevards Panorama draws staff from all corners of the world in search of incredible vertical. They have a searchable database of positions for which to apply, with all winter positions up for grabs.
KICKING HORSE SKI RESORT
To the north… if vertical is what you’re after, look no further! Kicking Horse Mountain Resort is home to one of the continent’s longest vertical drops – 4,133 feet!! – and trademarked as the “Champagne Powder Capital of Canada.” Endowed with an annual average of 24 feet of some of the lightest and driest powder on the planet, Kicking Horse offers 106 runs that span across 2,800-plus acres of lift-served, diverse terrain (including 70 inbound chutes).
Just over two hours from Calgary it makes for an easy drive if you’re needing your urban fix. Kicking Horse Mountain Resort enlists 5 Guiding Principles providing for the foundation of their workplace culture: Guest Experience, Employee Experience, Growth & Ingenuity, Community Relationships and Financial Responsibility.
All manner of positions are looking to be filled, so consider how you can contribute to the Kicking Horse Mountain Resort philosophy and join the team!
REVELSTOKE MOUNTAIN RESORT
If you’re looking for big snow and a town that offers character, community and just all-round terrific energy, Revy is for you!
Conveniently located, along the Trans-Canada between Golden and the commercial centre of Kamloops, not only does Revelstoke Mountain Resort boast an impressive 480 to 720 inches falls annually, they’re providing you the longest lift-served terrain in North America – an outrageous 5,620 vertical feet! If you’ve got stamina to match your skills, you’ll want to attempt its longest run, Last Spike, winding an amazing 9.5 miles down the mountain!
Are you courageous, compassionate, and competitive? Revelstoke Mountain Resort wants you! This is an adventurers mountain and there are openings for adventurers in all departments.
WHITEWATER SKI RESORT
Are you in search of the magical? The beautiful? The progressive and spiritual? Well, Nelson and Whitewater Ski Resort are perfect for you!
Named by Powder Magazine as “one of best powder mountains on the continent,” this pocket of winter wonderful is located just outside of Nelson, and receives an average of 40 feet of light, dry snow annually. There’s no shortage of varying natural terrain providing you more than 2,000-plus feet of steeps, deeps, chutes, bowls and glades across its 1,184 skiable acres. All of this brought to you by just three chairlifts. Powder seeking simplicity at it’s best!
Hate lift lines? Well, they pretty much don’t exist at Whitewater Ski Resort.
Love food? It reaches a whole other level at Whitewater! Former owners of the ski resort, Mike and Shelley Adams, ran the Fresh Tracks Café where they lured snow and culinary fiends alike with the food that would form the foundation of Shelley’s famous Whitewater Cooks series of critically acclaimed cookbooks, encouraging fabulous, healthy and delicious food.
A unique and wonderful corner of the Powder Highway, for sure! Find your place in it – all manner of positions, from Morning Gourmet Sandwich Maker to Barista to Snow School are open and waiting!
RED MOUNTAIN SKI RESORT
Here at Imagine Kootenay, we’ve been keeping a keen eye on the goings on at Rossland’s RED Mountain.
Known for their historically non-conformist and progressive philosophies, the ‘crazy uncle’ of the ski resort world, the folks at RED continue operating in that vein with their recent crowdfunding effort to keep the long running resort with her people.
So, while you may not be able to own a piece of RED, you can certainly revel in the joy of living and playing in this mining-real town, one of the first real ski towns in Western Canada and working for this unique resort.
There are few locations blessed with a topographical layout like that of RED Mountain’s. Ski or snowboard the 2,912 foot vertical drop oozing with endless, untouched fall-line snow. Not only is there 2,600-plus lift-serviced acres but if you’re game to hike, there’s an additional 1,600 acres where you’re always sure to enjoy fresh tracks. Like Whitewater, jump on the lift without a line.
If you’re needing to get to the city, the US border is nearby with only a couple of hour drive to Spokane.
All kinds of job openings are listed, from Freeski Coaches to Line Cooks and any number of roles in between.
Take advantage of the sheer numbers of winter opportunities these unique and wonderful resorts and communities are offering!
In the dead of winter the Powder Highway is a bright and vibrant light where opportunity meets lifestyle. What might have previously been simply a dream of living your outdoor adventure, here in the Kootenays, #yourbetterlife can, indeed, become a reality.