Kimberley Alpine Resort, British Columbia
Canada’s diamond mine at North Star Mountain
Kimberley, known as British Columbia’s Bavarian city, was founded in 1891 as a mining town but remade itself as a ski resort in 1972. The town chose a Bavarian theme and boasts Canada’s largest cuckoo clock. The resort, nestled in the Purcell Mountains in southeast British Columbia, offers visitors a spectacular winter playground with excellent snow and 64 trails covering 1,800 acres of varied terrain.
Skiers enjoy two faces of North Star Mountain with the difficulty of trails rated 25% beginner, 45% intermediate, and 30% advanced. There are two snowparks for boarders and 26 kilometers (16 miles) of trails for cross-country skiers. The resort’s top elevation is 1,981 meters (6,500 feet) with a vertical drop of 751 meters (2,645 feet). Kimberley offers night skiing, snowshoeing, hockey, curling, ice skating, and snowmobiling, as well.
Kimberley is a great destination for families. Full day-care facilities are available for children between the ages of 18 months and 12 years old. A KidzRule Evening Program offers different activities every evening. The Ski and Snowboard School gives group and private lessons for adults and children in a fun environment.
The resort’s weather is a bit milder than at the resorts in next-door Alberta. Its average annual snowfall is 400 centimeters (150 inches). Kimberley’s slopes lie in a perfect catchment area for powder, and snow stays light and dry for days, especially in the quiet, gladed black runs. Kimberley recently increased its snowmaking ability by boosting its water supply and adding four new snowguns.
The resort is just a little uphill from the town making it easy to enjoy après-ski activities in the town center. Restaurants range from the pine log décor of Kelsey’s Bar and Grill to a self-serve cafeteria. Shops sell clothing and accessories as well as unique gifts.