Resort Review: The best kept secret Sun Peaks, BC
On the winding drive from Kamloops, Mostly Mental Shuttle Driver Doug paints a fantastic picture, “You’ll have to get right out, it’s been snowing all night!” Followed by “but to be fair, if you want to rest it snows here all the time”. It was around this time that I knew i’d made a great decision in choosing Sun Peaks as the place to spend my winter.
Have you heard of Sun Peaks? Don’t worry if you haven’t, despite being the 2nd largest ski resort in Canada a lot of people simply bypass it on their way to other BC resorts. But with the addition of a new chairlift, terrain to suit the whole family and no crowds, Sun Peaks should be firmly at the top of your ‘Ski Resorts I Need to Visit’ list.
As you drive into Sun Peaks you can see from the village that this is not you average Canadian ski resort. European in style and with Mount To to your left and Mount Morrissey to your right, automatically your mind wanders to the quantity of the runs here.
Set amongst three peaks, Sundance, Tod and Morrissey, the terrain here is diverse, with a total of 4270 acres of runs amounting to 137 trails with the longest being 5 miles long. The lay out across the three mountains ensures that the few people who do ski at Sun Peaks are spread out meaning that you often find yourself with the whole run to yourself. This is particularly true on Morrissey an area with some great advanced terrain as its a little further from the village.
Sun Peaks is the perfect family resort with most runs from Tod and Sundance leading straight back down to the base area. This means it is possible for your group to ride runs of varying difficulty and all meet back up at the chair.
Sundance is the perfect place to start your day with wide groomers allowing you to warm up those legs and get your carve on. Sundance is also home to Sun Peaks impressive park which starts at the top of Sundance lift, and gradually increases in difficulty until you hit the big booters down near the base area. Tod gives access to some great tree skiing as well as a short walk into The Gills backcountry area. Whereas Morrissey is where you want to go to find those steep and deeps on a powder day.
The runs at Sun Peaks are majority graded as intermediate terrain 58% with advanced and beginner trails at 32% and 10% respectively. I personally feel that intermediates will love and progress at Sun Peaks because it has an abundance of groomed runs and entry glades that will both challenge and excite progressing riders. The 6 meters average annual snowfall will help their enjoyment with the quality being extremely dry and light.
Sun Peaks is easy to navigate with 13 total lifts, including 4 high speed quad chairlifts, 2 quad chairlifts, 1 triple chairlift, and 6 surface lifts including the addition of Orient Chairlift this year.
What we love about Sun Peaks…
Great terrain and lots of it with little to no crowds, especially on Morrissey or under the Burf chair. Great for learners with high quality ski school!
What we dislike about Sun Peaks…
Not much, the village style can make accommodation near the slopes pricey. Oh and the Burf chair could do with an update, taking 24 minutes from bottom to peak, but this also comes with the benefit that less people riding the Burf means more fresh tracks on a powder day.
Travel to resort
Nearest international airport is Calgary but a short internal flight to Kamloops will get you within a 30-40 min drive of Sun Peaks Village. Highly recommend Mostly Mental for shuttle services, great for airport transfers or trips into Kamloops to watch the hockey
A short hike into The Gills can lead to powder turns days after it has last snowed and is highly recommended. My favourite terrain was found on Morrissey, you really felt like you could have the whole of Morrissey to yourself.
If you are looking to make the most of Poutine whilst in Canada, check out the bacon cheeseburger poutine from Hoopla or go next door to Mountain High to grab a slice.
I was in staff accommodation for most of my time in Sun Peaks, however I was also fortunate to stay at the Sun Peaks Grand when I first arrived. The rooms are everything you’d expect and the location was perfect. Added benefit outside heated pools and hot tubs!
We would recommend this place for…
Families, intermediates, tree run shredders and every skier or boarder who doesn’t like lift lines. I would also say freestyle riders will also love this place due to the great progression and park which is laid out over 10KM
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