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6 Stellar Reasons to Plan Your Winter Getaway to Silver Star NOW
Looking for a reason to head to the snow this winter? We’ve got six right here! Read on and find out why you should make for the charming mountain village of Silver Star, a North Okanagan treasure, where you’ll find the welcome as expansive as the fabulous range of activities on offer.
1. Make Tracks Like A Pro
Seasoned skiers and riders probably know SilverStar Mountain Resort for its enviable reputation for great snow and varied terrain. A noted training base for some of Canada’s most accomplished freestyle skiers, the mountain presents a matrix of 132 runs and 3,282 acres of skiable terrain – a “mellow frontside and hairy backside” offering everything from easy-access groomers to the incredible pow stashes in the steeps, chutes, and gullies of Putnam Creek.
Two Nordic skiing areas (Sovereign Lake and SilverStar) offer 105km (64 miles) of daily-groomed trails; the largest continuously groomed network of cross-country ski trails in Canada. There are plenty more ways to up your winter game, too. What about a game of shinny on the 2.5-acre natural ice rink? Or head off on a forest snowshoe excursion (don’t forget your marshmallows and a flask of hot chocolate!) or get your heart pumping on a fat bike ride or down the slippery slopes of Tube Town.
2. Unwind in the Welcome of the Village Vibe
Long-time local and ski pioneer, Brian James, muses that Silver Star Village is like a Norman Rockwell painting come to life. Experience the optimism, colour and sheer fun of this community with a walk along the boardwalks of the main thoroughfare. Pop into a locally-owned boutique tucked in snow-capped buildings painted in oranges, blues, and purples. The aesthetic of bright buildings with ornate trimmings and hand-crafted signs is inspired by the Klondike era — a time of rowdy saloons, guest houses, and exuberant live performances.
This home-away-from-home is located mid-mountain at 1,600m (5,200ft), and just a short walk (or ski) from amenities and lifts. Wake up early and watch as mountain life begins for the day: Snow cats returning to the village after a night of grooming the runs, cheerful locals heading to work or play, and the tantalizing scent of Frank’s house-roasted coffee drifting out of Bugaboos Bakery Cafe.
Silver Star Village mixes all the ingredients for a cozy winter stay: ski-in/ski-out accommodation, great food, and relaxing ambiance. After a day of winter play, soak those aching muscles in your hotel’s slope-side hot tub, hit the spa for a massage, or kick back for an après-ski session at a local bar.
3. Fall for the Snow. Consistently. All-Naturally.
With its prime location in the Shuswap Highland of the Monashee Mountain range, Silver Star gets the best of the Pacific storms that barrel in from the coast. Enjoy a mountain resort blessed with an annual average snowfall of 7m (23 ft) — and with less moisture content than the coastal snowpack, Silver Star’s featherlight pow is seemingly bottomless and fluffy. So, plan that early or late season visit! There will be plenty of White Gold to enjoy (some of our biggest snow falls are in the spring).
4. A Taste Above the Ordinary
Silver Star Village eateries take inspiration from fresh, seasonal ingredients sourced from the bountiful Okanagan valley to craft unique and eclectic dining offerings. Try Indonesian-Dutch cuisine at the Bulldog Grand Cafe, cozy up at locals’ favourite Long John’s Pub, or try elevated dining at The Den, prepared by acclaimed chef, Scott Sanderson. The Black Pine Social’s mixologist-designed cocktails, curated wine list, and European-inspired tasting plates add a contemporary flare to the mix. The newest restaurant, D’Argento, is delighting adventurists with upscale Italian fare in a casual atmosphere.
For an unforgettable mountain summit dining experience, take a nighttime Snow Cat ride up to Paradise Camp for a lantern-lit dinner paired with wine and cocktails.
5. Culture, History, and Local Characters
Spend any length of time in Silver Star and you’ll discover an unwavering spirit and pride for the area. This has long been a place of innovation and resilience, reflected in the Indigenous peoples, who have lived, prospered, and protected these lands for thousands of years; and the hearty settlers who have made it their home in more recent times.
Whether you’ve managed to secure a spot at the locals’ table at Bugaboos, or are a first timer, you’re never a stranger at Silver Star. Smiles are a free and widely used currency around town, from the lifties to the shopkeepers (tip: come say “hi” to Sue at Coldstream Dry Goods).
Take the self-guided Silver Star Mountain Museum walking tour to learn about the area’s roots in silver mining and the passionate locals who helped build the ski resort. While you’re on that cultural journey, be sure to pop into independently-owned Gallery Odin to check out a rotating exhibition of Canadian contemporary art.
6. Fun! Fun! Fun!
Experience Silver Star together with friends and loved ones. This winter marks the return of live events at Silver Star, beginning with a vibrant Light Up celebration in December to usher in the holiday season. February’s Winter Carnival offers a host of events, including Indigenous performances, ice carving, art, and culinary events.
Spring heralds the arrival of sunshine, Peak Pride, and the SEISMIC Spring Festival, a celebration of all things music, sport, and mountain culture. The season culminates in April with the second annual Sovereign2SilverStar Ski Marathon, a challenging and fun race that links the two Nordic ski areas. Throughout the season, watch for grassroots events like wellness activities, rail jams, women’s ride days, and s’mores by the community fire pit. Visit the events page to stay in the know.
Experience the magic of winter. Book your visit to Silver Star now.
Photo Credits: Amanda Wallace, Lianne Viau, Amber Turnau, Andrew Strain, Morten Byskov