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Marmot Basin

Spring Skiing in the Canadian Rockies

March 11, 2016
By Naomi Witherick

Stay and ski for a few days at Sunshine Mountain Lodge (background), Banff's only on-hill accommodation. Image: Banff & Lake Louise Tourism / Paul Zizka

Stay and ski for a few days at Sunshine Mountain Lodge (background), Banff’s only on-hill accommodation. Image: Banff & Lake Louise Tourism / Paul Zizka

Spring skiing in Banff and Jasper is about BBQs, music and spring passes at killer prices. Expect great conditions too, with sunshine and late winter snowfall. Here are the deals and events not to miss.

The Annual Slush Cup Competition at Sunshine Village, Banff.

Sunshine Village’s Annual Slush Cup will be making a splash May 23. Image: Sunshine Village

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5 Alberta Rockies Ski Areas

By Where Staff

For nearly a century, skiers and boarders have flocked to the alpine paradise of the Canadian Rockies’ ski resorts. No wonder. Ours is a land where peaks outnumber people and the ski season is longer than any other in the country.

Photo: Banff Lake Louise Tourism / Paul Zizka Photography

Photo: Banff Lake Louise Tourism / Paul Zizka Photography

The impressive wilderness of Canada’s Mountain Parks (Banff and Jasper national parks, and Kananaskis Provincial Park) boasts an enviable combination of tree lined and open bowl terrain, high-speed lifts and on-hill amenities that summon skiers and boarders from around the world. Local ski enthusiasts dish out insider details to make your visit memorable.

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Another Two Ski Lifts at Marmot

Canadian Rockies Express Lift at Marmot Basin

Marmot Basin leads Canadian ski areas with three new chairlifts in as many years. You can ride:

• The Canadian Rockies Express that debuted in 2009/10 is the region’s longest high-speed quad. Rising from base to the top in 7.5 minutes, skiers can cycle four times and ski 10,000 vertical feet in an hour!

• The new Paradise high-speed quad chair is 71% longer and more accessible than the triple chair it replaced. It goes to the upper area of the mountain in 4.6 minutes at twice the speed of its predecessor.

• The new lower mountain School House triple chair is more comfortable and easier to use than the T-bar it replaced. It services Marmot’s new Learning Area.

These new chairs have big benefits. Lift lines have been virtually eliminated. From the top of the quads skiers enjoy superb views, and access all other lifts plus an amazing variety of green to black terrain.—JN

Marmot’s Chairlift with Benefits

Marmot Basin's Canadian Rockies Express high-speed quad by Frederic Legault

“Last year I put 90 days on my pass, the most ever. And I’ve been skiing Marmot Basin for 24 years,” says Matt Doig. He credits the joys of Marmot’s new Canadian Rockies Express for much of his increased slope time:

• Rising bottom to top in 7.5 minutes, this is the Canadian Rockies longest high-speed quad. It’s easy to cycle four times and ski 3000 vertical m (10,000 ft) an hour.

• The huge capacity of the Canadian Rockies Express has virtually eliminated lift lines.

• Riders get a full view of the Terrain Park action.

• From the top of the new lift, skiers access an incredible variety of terrain plus all other lifts on the mountain.

• The Canadian Rockies Express terminates at 2300 m (7500 ft) and above-treeline views of Jasper framed by Pyramid Mountain, and Athabasca Valley peaks.—JN

Aerial View

Aerial jump at Marmot's Rogers Terrain Park

Skiers and boarders of all abilities strut their skills on Rogers Terrain Park jumps, boxes and tables at Marmot Basin. But if you’d rather spectate, try the Kokanne Glacier Sun Deck; grab a beer and enjoy the view. Or, ride the Canadian Rockies Express; the region’s longest high-speed quad provides a good vantage to see tricksters in action. —Alison Baird