A person skiing amongst snow ghosts at Mount Washington Alpine Resort with now-covered mountains in the background

A Winter Weekend at Mount Washington

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Mount Washington Alpine Resort

Situated in the Beaufort Mountain Range on Vancouver Island, Mount Washington Alpine Resort is renowned for having some of the deepest snow on the west coast, with a whopping average of 9 metrest (30 feet) of snow each winter season. The resort boasts panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and the surrounding coastal mountain ranges, and it is a mere 30 minutes from the Comox Valley, making it the perfect weekend getaway for powder hounds.

With its location near town, there’s plenty to do on and off the hill, and there different ways to plan your winter getaway. Here are some examples.

Where to Stay

Staying on the hill at Mount Washington gives you easy access to the snow, and to the the freshest powder of the day. Alternatively, the Comox Valley communities of Courtenay, Comox, and Cumberland, approximately 30 minutes away, offer a range of ski and stay packages.

Mount Washington Alpine Resort/Jenn Dykstra

Stay Slopeside

Bear Lodge and Deer Lodge offer the perfect ski-in/ski-out lodging experience. With hot tubs, underground parking, and a variety of room options ranging from one-bedroom units to units with three bedrooms, solo travellers and groups alike are comfortable here. This is the top option if you’re looking to spend full days on the hill.

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Blue Haven at Mount Washington Alpine Resort | Reuben Krabbe

Stay in the Alpine Village

Staying in the village is a great option for families who want close access to the hill, with the convenience of being near amenities. Options for staying in the village include condos, townhomes, and adorable a-frame cabins that are privately owned and rented out by owners. One great option is the Apres-Ski9 townhouse, featuring a sauna and four bedrooms that are perfect for a friends or family getaway.

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A person relaxes on an outdoor lounge chair at the Kingfisher Resort & Spa
Kingfisher Resort & Spa | Boomer Jerritt

Stay in the Comox Valley

Kingfisher Oceanside Resort and Spa is a luxurious option that boasts gorgeous views of the Strait of Georgia paired with signature spa services and a heated outdoor pool and hot tub where you can relax after a day on the slopes.

Does a full-service hotel with three on-site dining options pique your interest? Try Best Western’s The Westerly Hotel in Courtenay. Also in Courtenay, the Old House Hotel features family-friendly suites, in-room fireplaces, and an outdoor heated pool and hot tub.

Smith Lake Farm is the place to go for winter camping. This adorable lakefront farm offers winter campsites with private outhouses, decks, and an onsite sauna. The campsites allow tent, RV, or van camping, and are a great low-cost option.

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What to Do

While the skiing at Mount Washington is a powder dream, there are plenty of alternatives for those who don’t ski. And when you want to mix things up, the Comox Valley communities host a range of activities, both indoors and out.

A wooden lodge with snow in the roof and a metal rack with skis on the left of the frame
Raven Lodge | Experience Comox Valley/Peter O'Hara

Things to Do on Mount Washington

If racing downhill is not your idea of a good time, you’re in luck. There are 55 km of maintained cross-country and 22 km of scenic snowshoeing trails to explore, with trail passes available at Raven Lodge. If, on the other hand, you’re looking for new ways to race downhill, try the resort’s family-friendly Tube Park.

Explore on two wheels with Mount Washington’s newest winter activity, fat biking. Essentially a mountain bike with wide tires, these bikes provide extra stability in the snow.

Every weekend throughout the winter, visit Raven Lodge for live entertainment between 2pm and 4pm, and Ted’s Bar and Grill between 3pm and 5pm.

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Courtenay District Museum | Experience Comox Valley/Peter O'Hara

Things to Do in the Comox Valley

The Comox Valley has a great climate for grape and apple growing, and is home to great wineries such as 40 Knots Winery, and Beaufort Vineyard and Estate Winery. There are also many incredible breweries to visit including Ace Brewing Company, Cumberland Brewing Co, Gladstone Brewing Co, Land & Sea Brewing Company, and New Tradition Brewing Company.

The Courtenay and District Museum & Paleontology Centre is the place to go to learn about the natural and cultural heritage of the Comox Valley. This remarkable museum and education center is a perfect place to escape the winter weather and connect with the land you’re visiting.

There’s nothing quite a relaxing spa treatment or sauna session after a day on the mountain. Visit The Lost Faucet Sauna House for a Nordic-inspired sauna treatment, or take a rejuvenating walk through the Pacific Mist Spa‘s hydropath.

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Where to Eat

There are several on-mountain options to keep you fueled and happy, including a café and a pub. In the Comox Valley communities, opportunities for diverse dining experiences plentiful. Below are some suggestions.

Two people wearing snow pants and toques stand on a wooden deck overlooking a snowy hill. They are holding coffee cups, and their snowshoes lean against the wooden railing behind them.
Raven Lodge | Experience Comox Valley/Peter O'Hara

Places to Eat on Mount Washington

Skiers can head to the Eagle View Bistro for coffee and baked goods in the morning and sandwiches for lunch. Nordic fans can get their latte fix at the Raven Cafe, which serves soups, sandwiches, and salads, and Saturdays they offer things like a snowshoe fondue with wine pairings.

Grab a quick bite on the hill at the Alpine Cafeteria, and on weekends get a burrito to go from The Cantina on Mount Washington. You can also enjoy their dine-in menu, which includes churros, Mexican lagers, and canned cocktails.

Local legend Ted’s Bar & Grill features casual pub fare, craft beers from local BC breweries, and signature cocktails. This family-friendly pub turns into a 19+ late night establishment after 10pm.

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Two people, one in a wheelchair, sit at a wooden table eating bowls of food with drinks on the table.
Biblio Taco in Cumberland | Comox Valley/Jordan Dyck

Places to Eat in the Comox Valley

For a wider range of options, head to the Comox Valley. Searching for a good brunch spot? Look no further than Off Main in Courtenay, featuring a rotating menu of weekly specials. And don’t miss the best scratch-made ramen on the island at Nikkei Ramen-ya. They live by their saying…everything is made from scratch. And there’s nothing quite like a warm bowl of ramen after a day in the snow.

In Comox, The Mill Coffee is a carefully curated retail shop and coffee spot that serves up a beautiful cup of coffee. Their menu also features several takeaway sandwiches and bakery treats made fresh daily.

Head to Cumberland and Biblio Taco for delicious Mexican cuisine that uses local ingredients, including meats, fish, and fresh produce.

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Mount Washington Alpine Resort Stats

  • Terrain: 688ha/1,700ac
  • Elevation: 1,588m/5,210ft
  • Annual Snowfall: 1,158cm/456in
  • Vertical: 505m/1,657ft
  • Lifts/ Runs: 9/81
  • Longest Run: 9km/1.2m
  • Difficulty: Beginner (14%), Intermediate (35%) and Advanced (51%)
  • Closest Airport: Comox Valley Airport (YQQ) and Campbell River Airport (YBL)

Mount Washington Alpine Resort is located within the unceded traditional territory of the K’ómoks First Nation in the mountains of the Pentlatch, E’iksan, Sahtloot and Sasitla peoples.

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