Powder snow is a renewable resource, every big storm wipes the slate clean and re-dresses mountains in their fresh white finest. At the same time, once the lifts start cranking pow-line perfection is also very much a limited resource, as happy shredders create bliss with every schmear turn, straight line, and stomped air.
Finding that perfect middle ground of terrain, weather, and frequent powder perfection resets over a timeline that lasts a full season can be tricky. Location, ski partners, and a willingness to ride the line between progression and tradition also play a role.
But this age-old, internal pow shredding algorithm—when dialled in correctly—delivers the ultimate fresh-turns-per-ski-day ratio as well as tangential benefits such as deep joy, sparkling adrenaline, and soul satisfaction. Skiers in the know simply refer to it as “The Good Life.” And one of the best, most consistent places to find it is RED Mountain, in Rossland, BC.
“I came to RED one summer with some folks I met from here,” says ski patroller Alli Eve. “That was 1993—I’ve never left. I love the people, the community, the terrain, and of course, the snow.”
And there’s generally no shortage of snow. With an annual average snowfall of 760 centimetres (300 inches), Red is the southwestern-most resort in British Columbia’s infamous “Powder Highway,” a collection of snow-pummeled, stash-heavy ski towns in the Kootenay/Rockies region of the province. This is literally where powder dreams come true for skiers from all over the world.
But perfect snow isn’t perfect unless it falls on the right terrain—steeps, glades, bowls, ridges, even groomers have a role to play in RED’s 3,850 acres of shred-ible terrain off of three separate summits (Red Mountain, Granite Mountain, and Grey Mountain.)
“RED has incredible 360-degree, fall-line skiing from the top of Granite Mountain,” says ex-world freeskiing champion Jeff Holden. “It’s one of the best ski hills in the country, and with a 25-minute side-country hike to the top of Mount Roberts, I can’t wait to get back to shred some blower pow for my 27th consecutive season.”
Holden competed at RED’s inaugural freeskiing event back in 1997 and returns to Western-Canada’s longest standing freeride event each season as a judge for the International Freeskiing Association and the Regional Director of Western Canada Freeride. “The old double chair installed to the top of RED Mountain in 1973 still holds the soul of skiing for me,” Holden adds.
And that sort of history is easy to slide into at RED. The oldest ski hill in British Columbia (in all of western Canada, actually), RED’s snowsliding history dates back to the late 1800s, when Scandinavian prospectors brought the love of sliding on snow into the gold rush mountains of the western Kootenays. The Rossland Ski Club held the first organized ski races in Canada and the country’s first downhill race took place February 15th, 1897 from the top of RED Mountain down into what’s now the site of the Rossland Museum & Discovery Centre. RED’s first gas-powered lift opened on December 26, 1947. In 1968, RED Mountian hosted Canada’s first-ever World Cup ski races, which brought the best skiers in the world to town. Except one of the best was already here, Rossland’s own Nancy Greene won her second World Cup championship right here on her home mountain.
The town of Rossland plays a key role in RED’s ski-town appeal. Small enough to remain friendly even on the busiest days (which are never really busy) but large enough to have a vibrant arts community and a punching-above-expectations culinary scene, Rossland is a ski town through and through.
“I love it because it’s small,” Alli Eve explains. “You walk down the street and you know people. The whole town is on a single postal code. Of course, that has a downside too. If there’s something going on the mountain, everyone knows you work there so I get people grilling me at the grocery store.
Eve is generally happy to share her on-hill knowledge with locals and guests alike, though she’s definitely holding some secrets when asked about her favourite runs. “Main on Granite is nice,” she says. “So is Gambler on Paradise, and I love the run Corduroy on Grey when it’s groomed. And of course Sally’s Alley— a run so good my daughter is named after it.”
Family, tradition, powder, and a perfect hometown hill for the next generation of skiers to shred it. Aka: The Good Life. But don’t take our word for it, come to RED and see for yourself.
“I came to Red one summer with some folks I met from here. That was 1993—I’ve never left."
"I can’t wait to get back to shred some blower pow for my 27th consecutive season.”
“The old double chair installed to the top of Red Mountain in 1973 still holds the soul of skiing for me.”
DID YOU KNOW?
The resort has nearly 3,000 ft of vertical drop and 300-inches of snowfall a season. That's deep!
Since RED Mountain is located very close to the US border (just under 9 miles north), there are several options available for air access through Canada and the USA. Fly, drive or take the shuttle!
The Constella Cabins are a collection of six overnight cabins perfectly nestled on the backside of Granite Mountain, at RED’s aptly named Paradise Basin. Not into cabin life? Check out these overnight options.
BIG MOUNTAIN, SMALL TOWN
RED Mountain x Mountain Life
With a perfect mix of deep pow, primo
terrain, and legit ski-town vibes RED Mountain continues to showcase The Good Life
DID YOU KNOW?
RED is the oldest resort in Western Canada!
DID YOU KNOW?
The town of Rossland was founded in 1897.
DID YOU KNOW?
The Rossland Winter Carnival was held annually from 1898 until 1917, took a 30-year hiatus for various reasons, and has now been going strong ever since.