If you’re looking for one of the best family friendly ski resorts then Ski Big White in Canada should be on your list. Biggie has been on the rise for years, and that’s no coincidence. There is a reason it’s known as one of Canada’s best ski resorts for the whole family.

If you go ski Big White you will end up skiing in a lot of whiteout days with a few bluebirds in between but trust us it’s absolutely worth it. These whiteout days mean A LOT of snow, yay!

You will find some of the softest snow imaginable. (and often untouched) snow out there which makes tree riding a blast! And the best part? The season starts in November and goes all the way until the end of April!

Everything you need to know about Skiing Big White, Canada

In this post, you will find everything there is to possibly know about skiing Big White, that will simplify your trip and make the whole experience easier for you.

This post includes:

  • The best way to get from Kelowna to Big White (or even all the way from Vancouver).
  • The easiest and cheapest ways to get a place to stay on the hill along.
  • Secrets to getting the most bang for your buck.
  • The best ways to save on lift tickets.
  • And much more.

No matter if you’re coming from a different country to do a ski season at the hill. Or you’re just a tourist passing by… If you’re wanting to experience some of Big White’s magical terrain then we have you covered!

Skiing Big White has been an absolute blast this season and even though we lived in Kelowna we made the trip up a few times a week to enjoy the beautiful mountain. It’s such a breath of fresh air to be up at Biggie.

Now let’s get to it…

Big White ski resort in winter.

Kelowna to Big White

One of the many beauties of Big White is the fact that it is so close to Kelowna. For myself (Dom), growing up in Alberta and having to drive 4 hours each way to go skiing makes this 1-hour drive seem like nothing. For Jo, growing up in Denmark, it’s a whole other story…

From Kelowna, all you have to do is take Highway 33 East until you turn off on Big White Road. As long as the weather is fine and the roads are great you’ll get there in no time. To the lower chair, it should only take about an hour.

Two things to keep in mind are:

  • You definitely will need winter tires and a reliable car to get up to Big White. Remember that you’re driving in the mountains. During winter. I think you get the point 😉
  • Note that the road seems wider than it actually is when there’s snow on it. The actual road is pretty narrow but the snow on the sides covers the potholes and the ground so it looks wider. Don’t fall for it 😉

FYI, there are absolutely NO GAS stations up at Big White so make sure your car is full before going up. Not talking from experience or anything (whoops)…

The roundtrip is roughly 100kms return which isn’t too far but there is quite an elevation gain so you will use a fair bit of gas to get up and down. So why not try and carpool and make the trip more enjoyable, cheaper, and all around better!

Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links which means that if you decide to use them we get a small commission from the platform. Thank you <3
House up at Big White Ski Resort.
Photo by Gavin Crawford

How to get there from Kelowna

There are three ways of carpooling that we’ve tried when driving to Big White, and we highly recommend using any of these any day of the week. It can be a pain to try and find a ride without carpooling, and it’s usually quite expensive and inconvenient too.

Poparide

This is Canada’s only ride-sharing app and we are grateful that it exists. Public transport is a nightmare in Canada. And expensive. And inconvenient.

With Poparide, lifts up and down the mountain are usually always $10. A pretty reasonable price if you ask us. Especially compared to the shuttle.

There are people who are driving back and forth every day between Kelowna and Big White so you should have no problem getting a lift up with someone. It also makes the ride much more enjoyable.

All drivers on Poparide have to submit government ID so it’s a pretty safe app. We’ve driven over 40 people on it and also taken rides and we’ve had no issues whatsoever. If you’re new to the app here’s $5 off your first ride.

Big White Ride Share Facebook Group

This is a specific group for people who are looking for ride shares and people who are posting trips down to Kelowna and back. One way trips usually cost $10 and if you’re going return with the same driver you can give them $15 total. We find this to be a great alternative for rides as well.

Official Big White Facebook Group

This group is basically a huge group of friendly people who live up at the mountain or go there all the time. If you want you can check if someone has a ride posted or post your own ride and hopefully someone can help give you out! We’d recommend using this group if you can’t find rides on Poparide or in the rideshare group.

Big White Ski Resort.

Jobs up at Biggie

If you’re a local or a traveler coming to Biggie on a work holiday visa then it’s a good idea to start applying for jobs in late summer before the winter season starts. Ski resorts love to fill their positions a few months before the season starts.

Jobs

Big White Jobs is the best place to look for jobs on the hill. You’ll be able to find all the current open positions and how many available spots they have.

If you’re looking to make a bit of extra money, try working as a server or bartender where you can make good tips. But no matter what kind of job, we’re sure you’ll have a super fun time because you’ll be surrounded by a bunch of like-minded travellers!

House up at Big White Ski Resort.

Big White Accommodation

Accommodation can get a little tricky since it is quite a small ski village and lots of the housing is for the staff at the hill. But there are a few solid options to find places to live or rent while you’re up at the hill. Of course, lots of it is locally owned by people from Kelowna who go up for the weekend. But since we’re in the gold rush days of online short term renting there are those options as well.

Airbnb

One of the easiest ways to find accommodation up at Big White is via Airbnb. If you haven’t got an account or make a new one you can get up to $62 CAD off your first stay. Try to book a few months in advance if possible though because there are a limited amount of available options.

Skiing up at Big White near Kelowna.

VRBO

Some places that aren’t posted on Airbnb may be posted on VRBO so try giving that a look. Especially if you’re looking for bigger and fancier places you will most likely find those options on VRBO.

Big White Accommodation Page

There are some regulations up at the mountain which means that not all buildings allow for those rental platforms to function. Instead, lots of the rental units can be found on the Big White accommodation page here. Prices tend to be a bit more expensive here but you will have a lot more options.

Otherwise, you can try the official Big White Facebook page where you can talk to some locals and may even be able to get a discount of some sort and not have to go through a middleman to rent a place up at the mountain!

Gondola at Big White Ski Resort.

Lift ticket information

Do not buy a season pass! You will most likely (99%) get a season pass with your job and unfortunately, if you buy a season pass before you start work you will not be able to get it refunded! 🙁 It happened to a friend of ours and it sucks! It’s nice to not have to splurge out $700- $1050 CAD in one day if you don’t have to 😉

If you plan to ski a lot in a season and you aren’t working at Big White then you should definitely get the early bird season pass. It usually has to be bought before the end of October and costs around $700.

If you miss out on the early bird price it’s still worth paying the $1049 CAD though. The ski pass comes with many perks and pays itself off in about 7-8 trips up to the mountain.

Here are some of the perks you get with a season pass at Big White:

  • You can give up to 2 friends 25% off their day passes
  • 15% off ski and snowboard rentals
  • 10% off ski rentals for friends
  • 15% off food and beverage at certain pubs, restaurants, and cafes
  • other small things!

So if you just plan on going for the day and one of your friends has a season pass then consider asking them to use their discount on you and save 25% off your ticket.

Apart from that, the cheapest way to buy a 1, 3, or 5-day pass is with the BIGGIE CARD!! You will save between $30-$40 CAD for each day you go. So it’s totally worth it and all you have to do is go to any Ski/snowboard shop in Kelowna and buy it. One we can recommend is Play It Again Sports.

Once you have your Biggie Card you can reload it online whenever you want and you can reuse it every season!

Dom stuck in a tree well at Big White Ski Resort.

Big White snow report

One of the most important things you’re going to want to know is how the snow is looking up at Big White. Skiing is a lot better when it dumps on the mountain and you can ski in fresh powder. There are a few ways to follow the snow reports up at Biggie. If you’re on Instagram then give @skibigwhite a follow. They post daily updates of the conditions and how much snow they’ve got in the past 24 hours.

Otherwise you can always go check out Big Whites snow report online where they have webcams, daily snow reports, grooming information, and much more. It’s super important to check the weather before you go because especially at Big White the weather makes a world of a difference. If it’s windy, cold, and foggy then you can get up to the hill and end up seeing absolutely nothing. It doesn’t hurt to check in the morning and see if it’s worth going up!

Summary

We’ve given you all the information you’ll hopefully need to explore Big White and making the most of your time up at the mountain. The rest is for you to explore and uncover. It’s a beautiful mountain that is very family-friendly and perfect for any level of skier and snowboarder.

Our season up at Biggie was filled with snow ghosts, low visibility, amazing tree runs, and cruising through the Ogopogo. We made the best of the days we could see and laughed when the visibility was brutal…where we’d end up usually eating french fries and sipping on hot chocolate.

It’s fair to say the name Big White is very fitting. Enjoy your time shredding down the mountain!

Have fun!

Dom & Jo
Red White Adventures
red white adventures logo with swan and moose

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33 Comments

  1. Kelsey on February 26, 2020 at 12:14 pm

    Looks like such a pretty resort! I’m new to snowboarding, but now I’m dying to get on the mountain as much as possible. Would love to check this place out one day 🙂

    • redwhiteadventures on February 26, 2020 at 7:19 pm

      Hey Kelsey,

      It’s definitely one of Canada’s finest resorts! We loved skiing up there and hopefully can share it with some friends who may want to visit it one day as well.

      -Dom

  2. Candice Rice on February 28, 2020 at 7:44 pm

    I plan a ton of trips and one of the biggest challenges for me is transportation or getting to the places I want to go to (often I don’t rent a car – although in Canada I do). Thank you for providing that info! It is super helpful!

    • redwhiteadventures on February 29, 2020 at 6:01 pm

      Hey Candice,

      Yeah unfortunately Canada is so big and vast you need a car to get everywhere since public transport isn’t ideal! Definitely consider using Poparide thought if you ever get a chance! It’s an awesome app! =)

      -Dom

  3. Julie on February 28, 2020 at 8:20 pm

    This was so thorough, thank you for all that information. Super helpful 🙂

    • redwhiteadventures on February 29, 2020 at 5:58 pm

      Hey Julie,

      We wanted to make it super easy for any future traveller wanting to ski at Big White! Thanks! =)

      -Jo

  4. Ting on February 28, 2020 at 10:36 pm

    That’s cool! I’ll share this with my husband. We went to Banff 2 years ago to snowboard and it was pretty awesome. My next stop will probably be Whistler or Jasper, now adding Big White to the list!

    • redwhiteadventures on February 29, 2020 at 6:18 pm

      Hey Ting,

      Sounds great! Where did you guys go in Canada!? Whistler is amazing and so Jasper and Banff!

      -Dom

  5. Amanda on February 28, 2020 at 11:27 pm

    Looks like a gorgeous ski resort with lots of choices for accommodations. Great info!

    • redwhiteadventures on February 29, 2020 at 6:00 pm

      Hey Amanda,

      Thanks so much! The ski resort is definitely one of our favorites!

      -Dom

  6. Prakhar Kasera on February 29, 2020 at 2:48 pm

    I have never been to Canada, neither I have ever been skiing. But I would love to experience both. It looks like Big White could be a perfect place to go skiing.

    • redwhiteadventures on February 29, 2020 at 6:26 pm

      Hey Prakhar,

      It’s a fun experience for sure! If you ever get the chance you should try it one day! =)

      -Dom

  7. Cyndi Buchanan on February 29, 2020 at 4:22 pm

    This looks like so much fun! I’m terrible at skiiing, but I still love to go.

    • redwhiteadventures on February 29, 2020 at 6:17 pm

      Hi Cydndy,

      There’s an awesome section to learn so you have nothing to worry about! =)

      -Jo

  8. Katherine on February 29, 2020 at 4:38 pm

    I need to learn to ski already! Big White looks gorgeous and I’d love to visit one day and make the most of it!

    • redwhiteadventures on February 29, 2020 at 5:57 pm

      Hey Katherine,

      Interior BC is amazing and worth visiting. IF you ever get a chance book a chalet in Big White for a weekend!

  9. Joanna on February 29, 2020 at 6:47 pm

    Big White looks like the perfect ski getaway, with so much snow and slopes for both beginners and advanced. it looks so beautiful up there as well!

    • redwhiteadventures on March 3, 2020 at 12:52 am

      Hey Joanna,

      That’s the beauty of it! It’s fun for everyone and every level of skier! =)

      -Dom

  10. Kanupriyaa Choudhary-Legha on March 1, 2020 at 1:08 am

    I have never been into winter sports but this honestly sounds so good. Thinking about going to one of the mountains near LA this winter to try some stuff out. Maybe I will end up in Canada next year!

    • redwhiteadventures on March 5, 2020 at 12:32 am

      Hey Kanu,

      Oh wow what mountains are those? Who knows..it’s only a few states away! =)

      -Dom

  11. The Handy Journal on March 1, 2020 at 7:48 am

    This place looks absolutely amazing ! I love to ski and now starting to learn more about snowboarding ! hopefully will visit Canada soon !

    • redwhiteadventures on March 5, 2020 at 4:48 pm

      Hey Handy,

      Wow that’s awesome. Skiing and snowboarding are so fun. If you love winter sports it’s something you have to try out! =)

  12. Vasundhra on March 1, 2020 at 9:48 am

    Ah, this is insightful! Definitely referring to your recommendations when I book my ski trip, next. Thank you!

    • redwhiteadventures on March 5, 2020 at 12:29 am

      Hey Vasundhra,

      Yes!! It’s worth visiting in late spring for sure!

      -Jo

  13. Dominique Walton Brooks on March 1, 2020 at 5:37 pm

    I had to look this up because I am not familiar with the area. My husband is the skier in our family and he talks about Whistler a lot. I will have to check and see if he knows about Big White. He would enjoy it!

    • redwhiteadventures on March 3, 2020 at 1:04 am

      Hey Dominique,

      Ahh Whistler is another amazing place to go ski in Canada. I’ms sure he would! =)

      -Jo

  14. Shannon on March 1, 2020 at 5:54 pm

    Wow this place looks like a winter wonderland! I’ve never been skiing but it sounds so fun!

    • redwhiteadventures on March 3, 2020 at 1:03 am

      Hey Shannon,

      It truly was an epic place! We loved going up on the weekends! =) Maybe you’ll end up going one day!

      -Dom

  15. Candle on March 4, 2020 at 3:00 am

    The views are breathtaking!! You can definitely tell you loved this resort. What is there to do if you come with a group and you’re the only one not able to ski? I can see me skiing for one day and I would be good. lol.

    • redwhiteadventures on March 5, 2020 at 12:30 am

      Hey Candle,

      Yes we sure did. There’s ice skating, snow shoeing, sitting at a pub and having a few pints, and enjoying the views!!

      -Dom

  16. Shelley on March 4, 2020 at 8:20 am

    This looks like a great destination. My husband is from Lethbridge, Alberta. I wonder how far away that is – we may check it out next time we are up there.

    • redwhiteadventures on March 5, 2020 at 12:28 am

      Hey Shelley,

      It’s a bit of a drive because it’s in a bot of an inconvenient place from Lethbridge but definitely worth visiting one day! =)

      -Dom

  17. redwhiteadventures on June 19, 2020 at 7:15 pm

    Hi Gilbert,

    Thanks for your feedback! =)

    -Dom

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