With over 4,200 Acres Sun Peaks is the second largest Canadian resort.................
Cruising down the lovely groomed blue trails on Mount Morrisey, one of three mountains that overlook Sun Peaks, it is easy to see why the resort appeals to intermediates – the slopes roll down to the village, lined by trees and somehow manage to make you feel relaxed and excited at the same time. They flatter your technique and will make modest skiers feel even more at home on the slopes than usual. Add in that these glorious trails are sparsely populated and you can see the appeal of these slopes.
Morrisey’s trails are a step up from most on the opposite peak – Sundance, which offers nursery slopes near the village and some long green and blue trails, some of which can be mastered by novices with only a couple of days practice under their belts. Several of these trails wind down through the villages town homes and others lead back to the edge of the village centre, meaning that much of the accommodation is ski-in/ski-out.
Photograph courtesy of A. Stein
Across from Morrisey and rising above Sundance is the resort’s original peak, Mount Tod, which is home to the more advanced terrain. From the mid-mountain restaurant there several routes down, including a couple of easier trails, but in general they are the steeper end of blue or single black in grading. Above the Sunburst Lodge, the resort’s on-mountain lunch spot, there lie some tougher slopes, including a number of gloriously wide open black runs and some tougher double blacks. Tod is also home to Sun Peaks’ recent addition, Gils; this previously back-country area became in-bounds last winter and adds a new dimension to the resort’s terrain, so much so that the resort is now boasting off-piste camps within its ski school programme.
The addition of Gils and that of some new black trails on the west side of Morrisey has lead to Sun Peaks becoming Canada’s second largest ski area, at 4,270 acres. Its resort village remains pleasantly quaint and understated though – a dozen or so lodgings cluster around a ski-through village core, which is home to a few shops, several cafes and a modest, yet diverse choice of dining options – from Sushi to Tex-Mex, via Pizza and Steak.
Sun Peaks may still appeal to those that love to cruise blue trails and then sip a couple of relaxing drinks with dinner, but with its recent additions on the slopes the resort can now offer to challenge more advanced skiers and snowboarders too.