As one of the biggest cities in Canada, Edmonton has plenty to do inside the city limits, but taking a bit of a drive outside the town will allow you to explore some excellent skiing options. For those planning an upcoming visit to Alberta and looking for great ski resorts near Edmonton, we’ve curated a list of the closest options.
One of the best things about the ski resorts near Edmonton is the variety of destinations you’ll find. There are some sizable hills with challenging runs as well as family-friendly slopes where you can get out to enjoy a casual day on the snow. Most of the immediate ski areas are smaller hills catering to beginner and intermediate riders.
The biggest resorts in Alberta require a farther drive from Edmonton. The Alberta region of Canada has hot springs too, especially rich in the area west of Calgary.
Here are the ski areas near Edmonton, Alberta, in order of proximity:
Snow Valley Ski – Edmonton: 10 km | 20 minutes
Snow Valley Ski Club is located right in the city of Edmonton meaning visitors don’t even have to leave the city to have some fun on the slopes. At Snow Valley, visitors will find four lifts and eight runs to explore. This small hill is an outstanding spot to get out for some fun after work, or even during your lunch break! With modest prices and a friendly atmosphere, this is a great place to spend time in the winter.
One of the best attractions at Snow Valley is the terrain parks. There’s a beginner park in addition to the main park, and each has a variety of features for you to grow your skills. Some of the notable features in the main park include a flat bar, cannon rail, hip jump, and raised lipstick rail. Experienced terrain riders can knock off the rust here, and it’s also a great place for beginners to get started.
Rabbit Hill – Edmonton: 32 km | 40 minutes
Rabbit Hill is another great option to get on your skis or board without traveling far from the city. Not only can you keep your drive time short by visiting Rabbit Hill, but you can also keep everyone in your party happy.
All levels of skiers and snowboarders will have fun at Rabbit Hill Snow Resort, with runs suitable for total beginners up to black diamond runs. There are also a variety of lift options, including a chairlift, ropes, magic carpets, and T-bars.
Just like Snow Valley, Rabbit Hill also has two terrain parks for you to explore. With an assortment of boxes, rails, and jumps, you’ll be able to challenge yourself all season long. If you need help developing your skills, whether on the slopes or in the terrain park, private and group lessons are available with experienced instructors.
Gwynne Valley – Wetaskiwin CTY: 70 km | 1 hour
Another great option for the whole family to get out and enjoy the snow is Gwynne Valley Ski Area, located to the south of Edmonton. If you are an adult who is just getting into skiing, or maybe you have skied for years and would like to teach your children, Gwynne Valley is perfect.
One of the most nerve-racking experiences new snowboarders and skiers have to accomplish is getting on the lift, and for those who are smaller, this can be a daunting task. A recent addition to Gwynne Valley that speaks to what this friendly destination is all about is the ‘spud lift’, specifically to help kids get up the slope.
While many big mountain resorts can be intimidating places for young people, places like Gwynne Valley Ski Area create opportunities to foster growth and are essential for the future of the sport.
Tawatinaw Valley – Tawatinaw: 96 km | 1.25 hours
As you start to drive a little farther from Edmonton, you begin to find a little more incline and a few more challenging ski runs. Some of those runs can be found at Tawatinaw Valley Ski Area, the largest hill of the aforementioned ski resorts.
This destination has a sizable collection of trails available, ranging from easy to difficult. Among these are a few Black Diamonds such as the Superpipe, Beaver Gully, and Otter’s Slide. Additionally, there are options in the terrain park area for all skill levels, including a mini-park for beginners and the main park with bigger features.
Looking for a change of pace from downhill skiing? Tawatinaw also offers tubing, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing.
Medicine Lodge Ski – Bentley: 162 km | 1.75 hours
Continuing the theme from much of this article, we have another hill that is all about having a great time with family and friends. They keep things simple at Medicine Lodge Ski Area, and that’s a good thing.
Ride the T-bar up to the top and pick from one of a few runs to make your way back down. Thanks to modest pricing and a welcoming environment, you might find yourself returning to this ski area week after week during the season.
Misty Ridge Ski Hill – Neerlandia: 157 km | 2 hours
At Misty Ridge Ski Hill, you will find something that you don’t see at many similar resorts: the ability to make snow. That alone is enough to put this destination on your map if Mother Nature hasn’t been providing much fresh powder.
In addition to making their own snow, Misty Ridge also offers an excellent bunny hill for those who are just learning how to ski or snowboard. It’s not always easy for beginners to find a place to practice without getting in the way of more experienced skiers.
With such a long bunny slope available, you’ll have plenty of room to practice turning and stopping. The practice time you put in at community-operated Misty Ridge Ski Hill could help you conquer many bigger mountains later on.
Taking a Ski Trip from Edmonton
As our list has established, the skiing options in the Edmonton area are mostly smaller hills with a limited number of runs and a few extra features. These can be great spots, but they aren’t going to scratch the itch when you are looking for that big mountain experience.
For that, you’ll need to take a bit of a road trip to get up into the Rockies. Fortunately, if you are willing to drive for a few hours or more, you can find some outstanding ski destinations.
In Jasper, Marmot Basin is an excellent option with over 1,700 skiable acres and a base elevation of more than 5,500 feet. The longest run here stretches out to 3.5 miles, so you’ll definitely be able to put those skills that you built on the smaller hills to the test here. With 91 total runs, 7 lifts, and two terrain parks, this is a mountain that’s certainly worth the drive.
Further south in the Rockies, you can find a variety of ski and snowboard options worthy of your attention. Some of the best ski resorts near Calgary include Lake Louise Ski Resort, Mount Norquay, Sunshine Village, and Nakiska Ski Area. With so many great local hills and the big mountain resorts within a day’s drive, Edmonton is a prime home base for a winter full of powdery fun.
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