Stretching the Last of the Spring Snow at Sun Peaks Resort, Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada.
The Sun Peaks Ski Resort is known as one of Canada’s sunniest ski resorts. It’s located a short distance away from Kamloops, British Columbia, in it’s own unique Resort Municipality which offers some homes, vacation rentals and a few limited city services. The resort is anchored by three distinct mountain skiing experiences, each that offer their own strengths and benefits. We’d get the experience of testing out all of them on our visit today.
This post is one chapter on our trip through the mountains of British Columbia, Canada. This trip was enhanced through Marriott Bonvoy Elite Status and Hertz President’s Circle. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.
Read More from This Trip
- Trip Introduction: Skiing in British Columbia, Canada during a Pandemic
- The Coastal Mountains of Whistler Blackcomb, Whistler, British Columbia, Canada
- The Dry Champagne Powder of Big White, Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada
- Home Block Restaurant at Cedar Creek Winery, Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada
- The Fairfield Inn and Suites, Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada
- The Spring Ski Conditions of Sun Peaks Resort, Sun Peaks, British Columbia, Canada
Activity: Stretching the Last of the Spring Snow and Sun Peaks Mountain Resort, Sun Peaks, British Columbia, Canada, during a Pandemic.
Planning a Visit to Sun Peaks:
The Ski Resort of Sun Peaks Mountain Resort is located approximately forty five minutes drive way from the city of Kamloops, British Columbia. The nearest airport is the Kamloops International Airport (Airport Code: YKA), which is occasionally serviced by Air Canada, Westjet and Central Mountain Air. Having flown through a few times, I wouldn’t expect to many scheduled flights and you may be better off landing in Kelowna Airport and driving the two hours to Kamloops.
On our trip, we were staying at the Fairfield Inn and Suites Kamloops. We left this property and drove up by rental car to Sun Peaks Mountain Resort. It was a fairly winding road, and much more twisty than our drive up to Big White from Kamloops.
Like with our visit to regionally neighbouring Big White, Kelowna, we booked a lift ticket on line. The lift tickets were a reasonable $109 CAD ($86 USD), which was much more economical than our $167 CAD ($130 USD) for additional days at Whistler Blackcomb. After parking the car, we located the kiosks and easily redeemed for our tickets.
Skiing at Sun Peaks:
The mountain of Sun Peaks is much more of a skier’s mountain as compared to Big White. The pitches of the hill are much more steep and the runs are much more wide and expansive. I felt that the mountain was much easier to ski for a skiers like me that enjoys a good fast cruise.
The first order of business to climb the mountain was a trip up the Sunburst Express. The run views were great, and the slopes were completely empty. We’d happen to be visiting on their third day from the end of the ski season. As a result, we had some spring like conditions for the day, with softer forgiving snow.
It was another deserted ski experience with the hill mostly empty thanks to the health pandemic.
We headed down to the ultra long Burfield Quad Chair. The chair marked the furthest west most point of the ski resort. The chair featured some pretty inspiring views as it climbed the spine of Tod mountain.
The Burfield Chair was the first and only chair I’ve ever written that has gone over a horse riding stable.
From the Top of Burfield, the snow was pretty good. MrsWT73 was cutting up some turns on spring like snow.
Food and Beverage:
On Mountain Dining
In a different method than many other ski resorts, Sun Peaks doesn’t seem to have too many on hill restaurants. We could only locate this one, which didn’t seem to have a proper name, at the top of the Sunburst Chair.
Every ski area seems to do things a little differently in the pandemic. At Sun Peaks, reservations were not needed, although we had to add our name to the list for entry into the restaurant. This took about fifteen minutes to wait for a table.
Once inside, we had cafeteria styled dining with seats outside on the patio. They must have had some labour shortages as it took quite a while to get the food actually prepared in the restaurant.
Fortunately, Sun Peaks was offering alcohol for purchase unlike Big White which was completely dry. We enjoyed some crisp local British Columbian Okanagan Pear Cider with lunch today.
There were fire pits going on the deck, which made for a warmer experience while sitting outside.
After lunch, we explored the rest of the resort. We gradually worked our way to easier slopes towards Sundance Mountain. There were quite a few runs and there was enough there to keep us entertained. There was also a terrain park for kids. Like Big White, most the hill was completely deserted as a result of the pandemic.
Towards the end of the day, we discovered a pop up bar at the base of Mount Morrisey. I left MrsWT73 at the base with an outdoor wine and a fire pit while I went off to bust off a few final cruising runs on Mount Morrisey.
I left her there and happily found my mid life crisis on the ski hill.
Bottom’s Bar and Grill
Not one to miss out on an Apres Ski Bar, after the end of the day, it was off to locate the best Apres Ski in Sun Peaks Village. We located the Bottom’s Bar and Grill. Given the pandemic, there wasn’t a lot of demand for tables and we were easily accommodated on the patio outside.
A Local Beer for me and a Cider for MrsWT73 along with large smiles; happy to actually be doing something instead of sitting inside under a provincial or federal health lockdown.
We would eventually drive down to Kamloops and overnight at the Fairfield Inn and Suites Kamloops. We’ would end up returning home to Vancouver the next day. We got stuck on the Coquihalla highway in a snow storm for 1 hour, but would eventually make it back to Vancouver and returned our rental car with over 1,233 kilometers travelled over the 4 day trip.
I was relieved to get off the Coquihalla Highway road after that white knuckled adventure.
Summary: Our day at Sun Peaks Resort:
Our day at Sun Peaks was a better day than at Big White. I was more impressed with the hill overall in that offered more challenge and complexity and generally a more varied skiing experience. Although we had some softer snow marking the end of the ski season, I’d be more favoured to return to Sun Peaks for a ski visit than Big White.