Don't like the rut of skiing or riding at one resort all winter? Calgary skiers and snowboarders don't have to choose just one resort. Instead, you can buy multi-resort season passes that are valid at a variety of ski slopes in the Canadian Rockies. Weigh the differences between the passes to pick the best one for you.
Check out the multiple-resort season passes offered by Ski Big 3. The Banff ski group sells a three-area pass that is valid all season long at Lake Louise, Sunshine Village and Mt. Norquay. The season pass comes in six varieties: adult, student, youth, senior, midweek or family.
What's the advantage of the Ski Big 3 pass? Lake Louise and Sunshine Village operate the longest seasons in the Canadian Rockies. They are usually the first resorts to open in early November, and Sunshine Village often runs its lifts into late May. Mt. Norquay also offers night skiing January to March.
The Ski Big 3 season pass is on sale until Sept. 30. The adult pass runs $1,379 while the Ski Big 3 pass for midweek, students, youth, and seniors costs $999. The family pass costs $2,999.
Ski Big 3 also sells its whomper Rocky Mountain Passport, which is valid at eight resorts in Alberta and eastern British Columbia. The advantage is its sheer scope of terrain, granting unlimited access to slopes at Mt. Norquay, Lake Louise, Sunshine Village, Nakiska, Fernie Alpine Resort, Kimberly Alpine Resort, Panorama Mountain Village and Marmot Basin.
The pass is also on sale until Sept. 30. It costs $1,699 for adults. Midweek, senior, student, youth, and family rates are also available.
The Ski Big 3 and Rocky Mountain Passport can be purchased here. You can also call the Banff Ski Hub at 403-762-4754.
Two passes from Resorts of the Canadian Rockies bundle up unlimited access to multiple resorts, too. The RCR Rockies Pass provides lift access at Fernie, Kimberley and Nakiska.
What's the advantage of the RCR Rockies Pass? You get access to Nakiska for quick skiing, as it is the closest ski area outside Calgary, and you can ski brand new terrain at Fernie this year with the addition of its Polar Peak lift. Kimberley also offers night skiing Thursdays through Saturdays and during Christmas holidays.
The RCR Rockies Pass, which is on sale until Oct. 15, costs $1,029 for adults; $819 for midweek, seniors and students; $719 for youth; and $339 for children. A family pass runs $2,399.
The RCR Super Pass beefs up the three-area pass by adding access to Lake Louise. The advantage of the Super Pass is its variety of geography with slightly different weather patterns, allowing you to chase snow as you wish. Lake Louise offers the highest elevation with stunning Banff National Park scenery, while Fernie usually collects the most snow. Nakiska sits protected in the Kananaskis Valley while Kimberley enjoys a sun belt.
On sale until Oct. 15, the RCR Super Pass costs $1,269 for adults. Special rates are also available for midweek, students, seniors, youth, children and families.
Both RCR season passes can be purchased online here.
A guest orients herself at Nakiska, the closest ski area outside Calgary. Photo by Becky Lomax.