winter in the kootenays

Top 10 mountaintop restaurants

Sure, locals love the deep, sugary snow, but what we love most about Whitewater Winter Resort in the Canadian Selkirk Mountains is the food. In fact, the clamor for Burgundian-trained chef Shelley Adams’s tasty creations has grown so loud that her cookbook, "Whitewater Cooks: Pure, Simple and Real Creations from the Fresh Tracks Café" (Whitecap Books, 2007; $30 U.S.), is already into its fourth printing, and volume two is on the way.

What’s for dinner: Whiskey-smoked salmon chowder, burgers piled high with caramelized onions and goat cheese. INFO: Entrées average $12 or less; Whitewater Winter Resort; 800/666-9420. –Deana Lancaster

Read the rest. [Thanks for the link, Doug]

I grew up in a place that was 4 hours to any good skiing, so I never caught the powder bug. For those of you who do, Nelson is a great place for a winter vacation. People come from far and wide to touch the Kootenay’s stunning terrain. Besides Whitewater Resort, Baldface Lodge is one of the largest snowcat operations, with 36,000 acres of powder terrain and Snowwater offers some of the best heli-skiing and heli-boarding around. And that’s just a sampler of what’s around Nelson. Rossland/Trail is right over there, and there’s tonnes of adventure escapes up the lake as well.

Whitewater has a bit of an anti-marketing team, according to their web site, and despite their effort the small resort still seems to be a favourite among many. That goes along with the general statement I’ve heard many times around town, "Don’t tell anyone about how great Nelson is, or they’ll come and move here too." And that makes a bit of sense to me. If everyone moved here, it just wouldn’t be Nelson anymore.

On the other hand, half of the population here is transplants, like myself, who came from somewhere else. That’s what’s so fascinating about it.

Because I didn’t grow up skiing, I’ve never really been a fan of winter. But I love the winters here in Nelson. We’re talking a long sleeve shirt, a sweater and a down vest. Even on the colder days… -10 or so, throw in a touque and some gloves to your outdoor gear and you’re set to go. I still tell all my friends who are suffering through the prairie winter forecast for months every year that our coldest part of the winter is about two weeks in January where it will dip to about -18.

Today? it’s winter white outside and plus 4. Plus. 4!

Nelson is the hidden gem of the world, not only in the winters. So, I don’t mind telling a few of you that you should get your butts down here to experience* it.

* Just don’t move here. 😉

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1 Comment

  1. My dad grew up on the Kootenay River in northern Idaho 🙂

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