In the Rocky Mountain Trench, the great Columbia River rises, initially flowing northward past the town of Invermere and into the Columbia Wetlands.
Here, the river is boosted by the mountain waters of Toby Creek, cascading down from the ancient mountains that lie to the west. Panorama Mountain Resort is situated just 18km/11mi west of Invermere.
Purcell Wilderness Conservancy
The longitudinal boundaries of the Purcells are the Rocky Mountain Trench and Kootenay Lake. The Trans-Canada Highway forms the northern boundary, while the southern end of the range extends into the US. Within this mountain range is the world-famous climbing destination known as the Bugaboos; the massive Purcell Wilderness Conservancy, which protects approximately 200,000ha/500,000ac of raw wilderness; and the ski slopes of Panorama.
Panorama Mountain Resort
Panorama Mountain Resort is situated just 18km/11mi west of Invermere, adjacent to Toby Creek. From the village, which sits at an elevation of 1,155m/3,800ft, a series of three lifts carries skiers up to the very top of the mountain – an elevation gain of 1,220m/4,000ft.
Panorama covers a total of 1,152ha/2,847ac and offers some of the longest fall line skiing in Canada. The resort has everything from wide cleared freeways to tight paths through the trees that cover much of the mountain.
Climate and Weather
Average winter temperatures at Panorama Mountain Resort are in the vicinity of -5°C/25°F, but be prepared for colder temperatures further up the mountain. Winter can deliver an arctic air mass from time to time that drives temperatures well into negative territory.
The mountain receives an adequate 470cm/189in of snow annually, but the resort can help nature out when required. Panorama has invested heavily in snow-making equipment that can add white stuff to 40% of its runs. This makes it possible for those that need an early downhill fix to ski in early November and, throughout the season, crews can spruce up a run with a fresh layer of machine-made snow in just a few hours.