Guidebook

Big White's Backcountry Gems

Skins and a bit of local knowledge lead to some wonderful tree skiing off the back of B.C.'s 3rd largest resort!

Charlie Boscoe

Description

Within an hour's reach of Kelowna - BC's 3rd largest city - sits the province's 3rd biggest ski area; Big White. "Biggie" is primarily known as a family resort (the area's own tagline is, "Canada's Favourite Family Resort") but there's also some excellent advanced terrain too, both lift and foot accessed.

Officially you aren't supposed to use the Big White lifts to access the backcountry so if you're going to do it then, at the very least, make sure you're suitably equipped and experienced for the tour you're doing. It's officially not permitted to use the lifts to access the backcountry but it seems to be tolerated if skiers are sensible and respectful of the terrain they're entering. Don't be the reason that Big White ski patrol get stricter!

The 4 tours in this guidebook are all suitable for intermediate skiers, but they do take you into avalanche terrain so they deserve respect. The ski area is also not responsible for you once you leave their boundary so also bear in mind that you'll need to be completely autonomous on these lines.

All of the routes in here are merely guides as to how to access different areas rather than specific lines - each of them accesses a different bowl and each bowl can be skied in countless different spots. Use these routes to get into the bowl, and then use your imagination to get the most out of them!

Back of Gem
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP's Editorial team.

Back of Gem

Big White Ski Resort
0 - 1 hrs
1.1 km
164 m
172 m
36 °
Some of the steeper terrain around Big White, easily accessed from the Gem Lake chairlift.
Difficult
Private
East Peak from Black Forest
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP's Editorial team.

East Peak from Black Forest

Big White Ski Resort
2 - 3 hrs
5.3 km
391 m
390 m
29 °
A long skin in is rewarded with some huge scenery and epic tree skiing.
Moderate
Private
Big White Mountain and East Peak
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP's Editorial team.

Big White Mountain and East Peak

Big White Ski Resort
1 - 2 hrs
3.1 km
291 m
521 m
33 °
A scenic journey through some fabulous ski terrain
Difficult
Private
Big White Mountain North Face
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP's Editorial team.

Big White Mountain North Face

Big White Ski Resort
1 - 2 hrs
2.9 km
201 m
431 m
41 °
Some of the steepest terrain around is remarkably easy to access!
Difficult
Private