Maybe this is just a me thing, but I have always associated the end of October with the beginning of winter, and all things Christmas. Once Halloween has passed, fall is dead to me until next year. Of course, fall doesn't technically end until December 21st, but Mother Nature doesn't care about that; especially not in Alberta.
Although the weather has remained decent up until now, it won't be long until we're buried under endless piles of snow. Alberta has always been infamously known for our brutal winters and its bipolarity. We've already had one snow storm this year, so who knows what else is in store over the remaining months? On the bright side, though, snow season also means ski season, and I know plenty of Albertans who love to ski.
Our weather isn't the only thing we're famous for, though. With those gorgeous Rocky Mountains running through our province, how can we not be full of amazing ski resorts? Even if you're not usually one for winter, or anything associated with it, maybe this is your year to get out there and try something new. Even if you don't enjoy it, at least you'll get some cute pictures for Instagram so your followers will think your outdoorsy.
If you're ready to hit the slopes, we've compiled a list of the Alberta resorts you need to check out this year, split up by their location. Bundle up, and get ready for a crazy winter at all of your favourite spots:
For resorts in Northern Alberta, click "Next".
Kinosoo Ridge Snow Resort // Cold Lake
Kinosoo is one of the best resorts to check out in NE Alberta, and is great for skiers of all skill levels. They have 13 runs, many of which are fully lit for the night, as well as a terrain park, tube park, and brand new lodge.
Pine Valley Snow Resort // Tawatinaw
Just one hour north of Edmonton, Pine Valley has something to offer everyone. Over 25km of cross-country ski trails, 24 downhill runs, and two tubing trails will keep you busy all day.
Misery Mountain Ski Area // Peace River
Situated within Peace River city limits, Misery Mountain is not only affordable, but also versatile. From night skiing to trails of various skill levels, to a tasty concession, they've got it all.
Fairview Ski Hill // Fairview
Fairview is great for skiers of all levels, and they offer unique events throughout the season, including Family Day Races. Fairview uses 100% natural snow on over 20,000 feet of terrain.
Marmot Basin // Jasper
Marmot Basin is the only ski area in Jasper National Park, and it's just one of the many reasons the park is worth visiting. It has the highest base elevation of any major ski area in Canada, and boasts 86 runs on 1,675 acres of property.
For resorts in Central Alberta, click Next
Canyon Ski Resort // Red Deer
Canyon is Alberta's largest non-mountain ski area, and features 538 feet of vertical ski slopes. The resort offers 22 runs, including four new runs for the upcoming season, as well as 80 acres of terrain, and terrific lighting for those nighttime runs.
Mount Joy Snow Resort // Lloydminster
Mount Joy is the perfect spot for a family trip, or a day on the slopes with friends who are new to skiing. The resort is super affordable, and offers equipment rentals and concessions for you to enjoy.
Medicine Lodge Ski Area // Rimbey
If you like to keep things simple, Medicine Lodge is where you'll want to go. The ski area is simply one big hill, made out of all natural snow, offering a variety of runs for people of all skill levels.
Drayton Valley Brazeau Snow Club // Drayton Valley
Since the mid 1950's, the Drayton Valley Brazeau Snow Club has been providing Albertans with a quality experience on the slopes. Affordable prices, a bunny hill, and 12 runs will keep you coming back again and again.
The Lake Louise Ski Resort // Lake Louise
If you're after an authentic skiing experience, what better place than the heart of the Rocky Mountains? With 4,200 acres to be explored, Lake Louise has something to offer skiers of all abilities.
For resorts in Southern Alberta, click "Next".
Castle Mountain Resort // Pincher Creek
Seeing that it's the second largest ski resort in Alberta, Castle Mountain is definitely a resort that's worth visiting. They boast nearly 3,600 acres of terrain and over 79 trails. Whether you're a newbie or a pro, you're sure to find a favourite at Castle Mountain.
Pass Powderkeg Ski Area // Blairmore
Pass Powderkeg isn't as popular as some other ski resorts, but that's ultimately what makes it so great. The ski area is designed for skiers of all ages and abilities, and is easily one of the best spots for night skiing in Alberta.
Hidden Valley Ski Resort // Medicine Hat
Any Alberta ski regular knows that Hidden Valley is one of the best. A winter playground, spanning 600 ft will keep you occupied and having the time of your life for hours on end. Diverse runs will challenge you and improve your skiing abilities.