Revelstoke Mountain Resort catches most eyes for big mountain skiing. The central British Columbia resort hosts the Swatch Freeride World Tour and boasts a rabid backcountry for hike, heli, and cat skiing in addition to its monster inbounds vertical. But Revelstoke is not just for those destined for the big leagues of skiing; it’s for families, too.
The secret is that the resort caters to families as much as its steep skiers. “People get psyched out about big, bad Revelstoke,” says Dan Sculnick, director of the Revelstoke Outdoor Center (ROC). “But the real face of the resort is that you can get around with the family.”
The ski area boasts plenty of family-friendly terrain — especially in the lower elevations. But even on the upper mountain, the Ripper Chair yields 2,400 vertical feet of playful terrain where a family of intermediate skiers can have fun. Short tree routes flank groomers with abundant tree trails for exploration.
For family lodging, the Sutton Place Hotel houses condos that sit smack above the kids center, ski school, tubing hill, learning lift, and childcare center. The compact base area makes for a kid-friendly zone that does not require tromping miles in ski boots to the lesson meeting area. Some condos are even pet friendly, so the family dog can come along on the ski trip.
Especially for families, Sculnick has developed on and off snow perks for kids. He designed kids lesson programs for bigger payoffs. Smaller groups allow for more successful learning conditions for kids, and recently revamped beginner terrain provides a good start for skiing or riding. “In lessons, mileage is key,” he says. “The coolest thing is for levels 1-5 to spend more time riding or skiing than sitting on a lift.”
The Kids ROC provides an extension for the snow school. Geared for ages 6-12, it serves as the meeting place for lessons and waiting time filled with fun and games. A small climbing wall and a foam play pit offer off-snow challenges while waiting for parents or lessons. Kids ROC also opens Wednesday through Saturday evenings with dinner and tubing, frisbee golf, or games to allow parents to have a night out.
For children 18 months to 6 years old, the Mountain Child Care provides half- and full-day care and interfaces with lesson programs for tots. The care center also opens several evenings each week for parents to take a night off.
Revelstoke’s base area houses the ultimate après family fun. Turtle Creek Tubing Park features easy access to the sliding lanes via a conveyer carpet. Tubing is offered Wednesdays through Sundays, 2-8 p.m. With the right condo, parents can sit indoors with a bottle of wine while watching older kids take tubing laps.
For split-ability families, Revelstoke’s variety of terrain can allow for a day when everyone can find satisfaction. While the kids are in lessons, parents can tack on the big mountain experiences of cat, heli, or backcountry skiing and still return in time for laps on the tubing hill with the family.
For more information on Revelstoke’s family programs, look here: Kids ROC, lessons, tubing, Mountain Child Care, Sutton Place Hotel.
Revelstoke Mountain Resort, BC
1st January 2013 - 7th April 2013
children 6-12 years old