Monday, April 6, 2015

Revelstoke | British Columbia

After our spontaneous four day stint in Lake Louise, we headed south on the Trans-Canadian Highway, the jagged mountains punching into the partly cloudy blue skies and interweaving with the long-stretching Pacific Canadian Railway trains. The new landscape had me in complete awe and excitement, and so did the prospect of our next destination, despite the fact that we knew the skiing at Revelstoke wasn't going to live up to her promises. 
"Revy" or "The Stoke" is a gritty, funky, ski-obsessed mountain town situated in southeastern British Columbia. Grizzly Bears greet you at the entrance.

Revelstoke Mountain Resort which opened in 2007, holds the record for the longest lift-accessed vertical descent in North America; it is well know for massively long runs, endless glade skiing, and deep champagne powder. It's a playful mountain, and I imagine just how phenomenal it could have been, had she gotten even a small storm while we were there, or in the week prior to our arrival. I forgot about the lack of powder in moments when I was speeding down a freshly groomed trail like Snow Rodeo, a wide open steep like Hot Sauce, or tackling the bumps on Jalapeno. Mostly, I longed for it when I jumped into the woods for the heck of it, only to be greeted with bare spots and ice. Sometimes Mother Nature's on your side, other times shes got plans of her own. (As every other person we spoke to felt the need to point out what we were all well aware of: the snow was back east where we came from! Silent cringes in the gondola all around.) Nevermind all of that. It's beautiful here.

We stayed at the fancy, well appointed, ski-in ski-out Sutton Place Hotel at the base of the mountain. The staff couldn't have been more accommodating and understanding about the lack of snow (and our need to seek it out) - allowing us to shorten our week long reservation on the front end and check in mid-week. The hotel lobby is gorgeous, embodying a fresh modern look with luxe touches. They offer a fantastic wine and cheese happy hour every evening that we made sure to hit up before catching the free shuttle into town.

Breakfast every morning was at La Baguette for cold brewed-coffee, artsy lattes and cappuccinos and hearty breakfast sandwiches or a terrific yogurt and granola bowl. For lunch on piste it was mild enough to sit on the deck at Revelation Lodge, which provided us with sweeping views of the Monashee Mountains and the valley below. From the cafeteria style offerings and from the bar, respectively, one day it's spicy beef pho capped off with a birthday Fireball shot ski, the next afternoon a large poutine (I'm beginning to loose count of how much poutine I've consumed....) and a round of Bloody Ceasars (the Canadian version of a Bloody Mary and about my 8th of the trip). Look to apr├Ęs ski at MaKenzie Common Tavern by the outdoor fires, with a cold micro-brew at the bar, or a round of pool in the basement. The other restaurant at the resort is Rockford Wok Bar & Grill. We ate here the night we arrived - noshing on chili edamame, Thai steak salad and Kung Pao chicken noodles, washed down with bottles of cold Junmai sake, followed by sake bombs and creative cocktails like the lychee lemongrass martini or a green tea mojito. 

For dinner in town, Kawakubo is where all the locals recommend. Reservations are encouraged. The sake bombs streak continues and the sushi is delicious. There's enough bars downtown for a crawl, we make our way to River City Pub, The Taco Club and The Cabin (sadly, all the bowling lanes are booked.) My favorite and not to be missed spot is The Village Idiot for all its retro straight-ski paraphernalia. 

 Mid-stay, about half us us choose to indulge in massages at the resorts Refinery Day Spa. I found the prices to be reasonable and my masseuse was excellent. I'd recommend booking in advance for ideal times, as spots do fill up quickly. Otherwise, the secluded third floor hot tub should help with relaxation and absolving achy limbs. As far as hot tubs go, this one was pure bliss.

For the last run of the trip, three of us who had been skiing together all along decide it's the 9 mile green cruiser that loops back and fourth throughout the entire mountain, top to bottom, no stopping allowed. The Last Spike was a carefree run that fittingly ended our time here.
Revelstoke, I plan to come back and experience you in all the rest of your glory. In the meantime, I'm still stoked to have visited. We've been reminded on this trip that no matter what Mother Nature has in store, keep calm and go skiing.

 2950 Camozzi Road
Revelstoke, BC V0E 2S1, Canada

on mountain / summit photos courtesy of Mike Nelligan


  1. So fun! gorgeous pics. I would love that granola bowl right now.

  2. Looks like you made the most of the snow-less weekend. Love the final shot of all of you with your skis!

  3. Nice way to celebrate your birthday. Looks like fun in spite of the snow conditions