Ski Canada - BC

Kimberley Resort Reviews

  • Weather Forecast for Kimberley at  m altitude issued: 10 am07 Dec 2016 (local time)  
Ski Canada - BC

Kimberley Resort Reviews

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Visitor reviews for Kimberley Ski Resort

  • February 04, 2016
    from United Kingdom

    As others have said, where are all the people? Freezing cold for us Europeans but would go back if it was not such a hassle to get there; no queues and friendly people.

  • Kimberley Ratings

    Overall: 3.8. Based on 12 votes and 10 reviews. Vote

    Access: 4.4

    (1) At least one overnight stop, (2) requires a whole day, (3) requires more than half a day – you may have time for a few turns (4) arrive by lunchtime and ski all afternoon, (5) there is a main airport within an hour of Kimberley.

    Public Transport: 2.8

    (1) There are no buses or taxis to Kimberley, (3) there are slow or infrequent buses / trains available, (5) getting to the resort is easy with frequent bus / train connections.

    Scenery: 4.3

    (1) An ugly resort in a bland setting, (3) average mountain views and resort, (5) a spectacular setting and a beautiful / historic resort town.

    Accommodation: 4.5

    (1) No places to stay in/near Kimberley, (3) a few places to stay in the resort, (5) a wide variety of accommodation suitable to suit all budgets.

    Cheap Rooms: 2.6

    (1) No budget accommodation available, (3) just one or two hostels so book ahead, (5) several cheap hostels and pensions available.

    Luxury Hotels: 3.5

    (1) No luxury accommodation available, (3) just one or two luxury hotels so book ahead, (5) several up-market hotels in Kimberley.

    Ski in/Ski out: 4.7

    (1) The ski area is located far from any accommodation, (3) a free ski bus takes you to the ski area in a short trip, (5) Ski-in ski-out accommodation is available.

    Childcare: 3.9

    (1) There are no child care facilities at Kimberley, (5) the resort has excellent child-care facilities including at least one reasonably priced creche.

    Snowsure: 4.6

    (1) Occasionally gets enough snow for skiing, (2) is often closed due to a lack of snow, (3) occasionally suffers from a lack of snow, (4) rarely suffers from a lack of snow, (5) Kimberley is snowsure even in the poorest seasons.

    Snowmaking: 2.9

    (1) Kimberley relies entirely on natural snow, (3) there are just a few snow cannons, (5) there are snowmaking facilities on all pistes.

    Snow Grooming: 4.0

    (1) There are no snow groomers at Kimberley, (3) occasionally some pistes are left ungroomed and in a poor state, (5) all the runs at Kimberley are groomed daily.

    Shelter: 4.7

    (1) there is nowhere to ski when it is windy or visibility is bad and lifts often shut, (3) there are some trees for poor visibility but main lifts sometimes close, (5) Kimberley is mostly in forest where you can ski in flat-light and windy days, lifts rarely close.

    Nearby options: 3.5

    (1) If snow conditions are poor at Kimberley, it will be poor everywhere nearby, (3) there are good alternatives within an hours drive, (5) other locations on the same lift pass provide a rich variety of snowsure ski conditions.

    Regional rating: 4.0

    (1) Kimberley usually has poor snow conditions compared to other resorts in region, (3) has average conditions for the region, (5) usually has the best snow conditions in the region.

    Lift Staff: 4.6

    (1) The staff at Kimberley are rude or unhelpful, (5) lift staff at Kimberley are pleasant, cheerful and eager to help.

    Crowds/Queues: 4.7

    (1) the resort is always busy and there are usually long lift queues, (3) it is quiet apart from occasional weekends and school holidays, (5) it is uncrowded and lift queues are very rare.

    Ski Schools: 4.4

    (1) No ski schools available, (2) one or two ski schools but local language only, (3) a few ski schools but book early for multi-lingual instructors, (4) plenty of ski schools and multi-lingual instructors available, (5) excellent ski schools with friendly multi-lingual ski instructors.

    Hire and Repairs: 4.5

    (1) Nothing can be sourced, not even ski-wax or ptex. (3) there are some ski shops but rentals need to be booked in advance, (5) good quality ski equipment can be purchased or hired and overnight repairs are possible.

    Variety of pistes: 4.2

    (1) The ski runs are featureless and unvaried, (3) the ski runs are varied but not extensive enough for a week, (5) Kimberley has diverse and interesting pistes including forests and high alpine terrain.

    Beginners: 4.1

    (1) Beginners can only watch others ski and snowboard, (3) a few gentle slopes but beginners will get bored in less than a week, (3) Vast areas of gentle terrain.

    Intermediates: 4.7

    (1) No intermediate terrain at Kimberley, (3) intermediate skiers will get bored after a few days, (5) vast areas of cruising runs.

    Advanced: 4.1

    (1) Nothing for advanced skiers and snowboarders, (3) enough steep terrain for a few days with some good offpiste, (5) Enough steep terrain and offpiste areas to entertain advanced skiers for at least a week.

    Snow Park: 2.7

    (1) Not even a kicker at Kimberley, (3) average sized park quite well looked after, (5) huge park area and expertly crafted pipes, jumps and boardercross trails.

    Off-piste: 3.0

    (1) No off-piste worth mentioning, (2) off piste is out-of-bounds, (3) some varied offpiste that stays fresh for one or two days, (5) a vast array of off-piste routes that can stay untracked for several days.

    Cross-country: 4.5

    (1) There is nowhere to go for cross-country skiing around Kimberley, (3) there are some cross country trails available, (5) the area features many spectacular and well maintained cross-country trails.

    Luge/Toboggan: 1.2

    (1) No designated luge or toboggan runs, (3) there are toboggan runs that open quite often, (5) Kimberley has long and well maintained luge / toboggan facilities suitable for all ages.

    Mountain Dining: 3.2

    (1) Nowhere to buy food by the pistes, (3) some places to eat up on the mountain but they are often busy and expensive, (5) there is a variety of excellent mountain eateries right next to the slopes to suit all budgets.

    Eating: 3.3

    (1) Bring your own food, there isn't even a shop. (5) A wide variety of places to eat and drink in the resort, from fast food to fancy restaurants.

    Apres-Ski: 3.3

    (1) Nothing to do, not even a bar, (3) there are a few bars in the resort but nothing special, (5) clubs and bars stay open until very late and have a friendly atmosphere.

    Other Sports: 3.7

    (1) No sports facilities at all apart from ski lifts, (3) resort has just a small public swimming pool, (5) resort has all kinds of sports facilities, including a full-size swimming pool.

    Entertainment: 3.2

    (1) Besides the snow and walking there is nothing to do here, (3) the non-skier will find things to do for few days but may become bored after a week, (5) the resort area is a fascinating place to visit, regardless of winter sports.

    Winter Walks: 3.7

    (1) Very limited walking and no snowshoe trails, (3) a couple of designated scenic walking/snowshoe trails, (5) extensive and diverse winter walking trails for all abilities.

    Ski Pass Value: 3.6

    (1) A 1 week ski pass is overpriced compared to the number of lifts available, (3) the ski pass is averagely priced and covers a reasonable number of lifts, (5) ski passes are excellent value for money and cover a lot of lifts spanning a big area.

    Value (National): 4.2

    (1) Overall, Kimberley is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the country and not worth the money, (3) overall represents average value for money, (5) overall offers the best value resort in the country.

    Value (Global): 4.7

    (1) Overall, Kimberley is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the world, (3) overall it offers pretty average value for money compared to resorts from other countries, (5) internationally the resort offers excellent value for money.

    Show all 35 ratings

  • January 20, 2016
    from Canada

    2015/16 season has been great so far. Early season dumps, followed by light snow on a regular basis has resulted in amazing piste conditions. Powder days about once or twice a week have made for happy powder hounds.

    Friendly staff and friendly guests make for an amazing experience on the hill.

  • March 08, 2013
    from Canada

    Snow conditions are horrible right now, I just got back from a 3 day trip up there and the hill was just ice and hard packed, what we called fake powder. I still hit it up all 3 days but my fam, who are pretty good ski/boarders, tapped out real quick. Was really dissapointed no sites put an accurate review of this out there. Don't know what to say as far as a solution, maybe calling a local gas station or something, trying to get ahold of a boarder and get a real review.

  • November 24, 2011
    from United Kingdom

    I worked in Kimberley during the season of 09/10 and fell in love with the place. I have been back for holidays ever since. If you are used to skiing in the busy resorts in Europe this is a perfect change. The slopes and hotels are situated up hill (approx 45 min walk) away from the main town of Kimberley.

    Good points:

    *** During the week the slopes are very quiet. A times I never made it out till 11am - 12pm and could still find areas of freshly groomed piste that hadn't been touched yet. There was also many times that I was the only person on a particular run and didn't see another skier till I joined the bigger main slopes. The resort does busy up a bit at the weekends with the locals however the queues for the lifts are nothing compared to Europe (a 5 min wait at the most)

    *** The ski school are fantastic and very flexible. The standard of teaching is great and class sizes are very small. Even if I paid for a group lesson there were several occasions that I was the only person in the group that day so got a private lesson instead!

    *** The Kimberley lift pass also includes Fernie resort. Fernie is famous for it's steep, deep powder bowls and is certainly worth a visit

    Bad points:

    *** There are no grocery stores up by the hotels on the ski hill. The nearest one is in the main town of Kimberley (45 min walk). This is a bit inconvenient. Although there is a ski bus that runs between the hotels and the town of Kimberley the service isn't that great, doesn't run that often and finishes relatively early at night. Taxis are expensive! (about $12 each way). There is limited restaurants at the hotels ( 3 the last time i was there). There is a bigger selection down town.

    *** I would definitely recommend hiring a car from the airport as there are no car hire companies in Kimberley. The nearest one is Cranbrook (25 min drive). I found it quite restricting not having one. There are lots of other places to visit outside of Kimberley that would be impossible without a car e.g other near by ski resorts, radium hot springs

    *** The journey is very long and would suggest a trip of longer than 7 nights due to this. It takes a day or 2 to recover and get used to the time difference.

    If you are looking for a quiet, relaxing holiday where you ski all day and have a quiet evening then this is a great place to go. Great snow, great slopes and very friendly locals. I wouldn't recommend this resort for younger groups of people who are looking for entertainment in the evenings. There is also limited things for kids to do in the evenings and they are not allowed in the bars after 8pm.

  • February 19, 2010
    from United Kingdom

    We went to Kimberley with Inghams and we had a fantastic 2 weeks! This was our first time in Canada, so we can only really compare it with the Alps (and Scotland of course). We have been skiing in the 3 Valleys for the last 10 years, introducing all 3 of our children to skiing during that time.

    There was 7 of us altogether: 4 adults and 3 kids spread over 3 generations of the same family. We hired a 7-seater independently of Inghams so that the party could split between the transfer bus and the car. This is simply because we only wanted the car 'in-resort', and it would not fit all the people and all the kit! We did this based on other reviews, so thank you for that.

    Kimberley is an old mining town (gold, silver zinc and iron) ...but the mining is all finished now. They came up with the Bavarian theme in the seventies to attract more tourists. A Calgarian oil baron is developing first class golf courses and accommodation in the 'Kimberley Alpine Resort'. So the primary seasonal attraction seems to be the summer activities.

    The Hill:
    Pros - Good snow record and plenty of wide flat runs that are excellent when freshly groomed. It is mostly quiet, and queues should only form on Saturdays. There are lots of runs to choose from with a fair variety of difficulty, although mostly suiting intermediates. There are no mountain restaurants to siphon your cash, but there is a facility at the top for eating packed lunch and getting a coffee for a voluntary contribution. There is night skiing 3 times a week, which is well lit and fun. Kimberley does not attract the nutters, so it is the safest place I have been to for family skiing. The quality of the ski instuctors is very high and they are friendly too. Ski instruction is also much more flexible than we have experienced in France. For a 3 day course, you get 3 one day tickets that can be used to suit yourself.

    Cons - Kimberley has fairly limited variety for absolute beginners and experts, especially if you are there for more than a week. Advanced skiers can cover the hill in 3 or 4 days, but you'll want to go back and do some of the runs again. Investment is required to upgrade the lifts, especially on the back side of the hill. Only the North Star Express comes off the wire to load, so it can travel at 5m/sec. The other 2 chairs (Easter and Tamarack) are old and don't come off the wire. They are running as fast as they dare, but travel is still only 1-2m/sec. I wouldn't say that they need more than the 3 chairlifts because the layout of the hill allows for it. Signposting has apparently been improved recently, but they don't have the European 'piste marker' system. So if thick cloud does come in, it would be easy to get lost! There is a bit of a bottle-neck coming over the bridge down to the base area. Another minor thing is the 80s style paper lift passes that stick back to back over a metal hanger ...WTF?

    Accommodation:
    Pros - We stayed at the Trickle Creek Aparthotel, and overall it is fab. The Trickle Creek and the Polaris Lodge are right there at the bottom of the hill. You can walk out of the ski locker room and hit the lift attendent with a snowball. The beginner area is even closer (carpet and T-bar). The rooms are comfortable and it is great being able to go for a swim and hot-tub outdoors. The rooms have a large American fridge freezer and full size - cookers, microwaves and dishwashers. Daily house-keeping helps to keep it tidy, and re-supplies tea, coffee, toiletries and dishwasher tabs. There is a very usable lauderette in the Trickle Creek at only $1 per wash. Free internet in the room (not WIFI) is very handy, so well worth taking the laptop.

    Cons - The single elevator gets quite busy, so it could do with a second one. There is not much storage space/shelves in the 4 person rooms for all the bits and bobs skiers need. The resort is well placed for the skiing, but not so much for the town supermarkets etc. It is too far to walk, so you either need a hire car (recommended) or there is a wee community bus that buzzes up and down.

    Travel:
    It was an 8 hour flight (Manc-Calgary) and 4 hour drive/transfer to get to Kimberley, but through some pretty spectacular scenery. The transfer bus did not stop at any other resorts, so it was door to door with a comfort stop in Radium Hot Springs. We also hired a car at Calgary airport (erentals.com) and it turned out to be well worth the extra few hundred pounds. We did the excursions that Inghams offered for a fraction of the cost, which almost paid for the car hire! We could drive to the bigger supermarket at the bottom end of town. We also went to the big Wal-Mart in Cranbrook (20 minutes drive), plus the Trickle Creek has underground parking with elevator access. Fernie and Panorama are both about 100 minutes drive. There is also a resort in Idaho (Sand Point, Schweitzer mountain) that is about 2 hours away. The natural hot springs are also well worth a half day trip. The nearest 'free access' springs at 'White Swan' were about 70 minutes drive north.

    Inghams are really good, and the pre-bookable ski packs are extremely good value. With 3 kids all skiing for free and taking lessons for peanuts, we were quids in compared to France. The ski/snowboard lessons are inter-changeable and unfortunately we seem to have lost our eldest to the 'dark side'.

    Overall, I would recommend Kimberley to those with kids looking for a 'small and friendly' family ski resort. Everyone else should go to Fernie. But whatever you do, spend that extra few hundred quid on a hire car!

    Check out our holiday video montage(s) on youtube.com/moosealini

  • February 22, 2009
    from United Kingdom

    Well, as promised we came back to Kimberley this year, another grueling 9 hour plane and 4.5 hours on the bus. Inghams guide was very friendly and efficient on the bus, but spent most of her time trying to sell us the extortionately priced excursions. ($250 per person half day dog sleigh rides for example. Who can afford these?)
    No snow had fallen since the end of December, and only about 1 or 2cm fell whilst we were at Kimberley :-(. This meant that the run (one only since the closure of one of the four lifts present last year) down to base station from the bottleneck at the bridge over the road - only about 15 metres wide - became very icy despite the overnight grooming; a disaster waiting to happen.
    Kimberley resort is not for beginners. There are no really gentle slopes and the only slope set aside for beginners is small and quite steep. I certainly wouldn't have liked to be a complete beginner on it. We arrived on a Wednesday before half term so no lift queues - wonderful. Come Saturday the whole world arrived with loads of little kids (most of whom skied better than I did) and it was your typical half-term scramble.
    There is only one restaurant at base station (Kelseys) but as we stayed at the Trickle Creek Inn (breakfast such as it was not included this year - come on Inghams.) it was part of the hotel and easy to get to. Good (but mostly fried) food with huge portions. Other restaurants in the town were the Green Phoenix: a tasty feed with a most accommodating and friendly owner. The Baurnhouse is also good; go for the Bavarian Feast, it saves you having to choose and is the best value on the menu.
    Getting to the restaurants is a problem as the bus runs only hourly, is packed, and last run is at 9pm. All life stops then.
    Taxis are available (and necessary) so when you go to the supermarket in town (shuts at 8) you don't have to wait for the bus laden with bags in the brutal cold.
    Ski hire at Kimberley is reasonable, and the staff at the hire shop are the friendliest and most accommodating you'll ever meet. The ski instructors are very good, (ask for Sam 'I am the supervisor' -he's the best) and classes are small.
    Kimberley needs to sharpen up it's act if it's to retain it's customers. The mountain needs to be opened up and more runs down to base station be opened. We are a family of intermediates to advanced, and had we not had lessons, we'd have skied the mountain in about a day and a half and then got bored.

  • January 08, 2009
    from United Kingdom

    Heck of a journey to get to Kimberley: 9 hrs flight plus 5 hrs coach.

    We went over New Year - the resort was over full, no equipment hire left but once the locals had gone back to work the resort was empty. So much so that Stemwinders [the only Apris ski bar] closes at 5:00pm when the night skiing isn't on, and then kids only until 8:00. The only other area to take kids was Kelsey's restaurant but you can only have kids around whilst eating. This is the least family friendly resort I have ever been to.

    They have taken one of the lifts out so there are now only 3 and only one into the base. This makes for an awful bottleneck on a steep slope - not a good beginners resort.

    On the good side the snow was excellent. They do have free mountain guides which are worth checking out [they get a free days ski pass if they show guests around the slopes]. Accommodation [Trickle Creek Inn] was good, but the bus service now runs less than every hour with large breaks in the schedule. This makes for big problems when shopping for food etc.

    None of the resort ATM's use VISA so if this is your card you have to go into town to get money [taxi 12 dollars each way or bus].

    Would I go back there? No - but at the end of the day, despite all the problems, we did enjoy ourselves - we are a family of beginners to intermediates.

  • February 20, 2008
    from United Kingdom

    Hell of a trip to get here - 9 hour flight followed by a 4 and a half hour bus ride. Lovely quiet resort. Most places shut by ten pm, but snow is excellent and thebinstructors and rental staff couldn't be more pleasant and helpful. Almost no queues at the lifts, apart from the the half term week (if you have kids you know what I mean!) and only about a third of the runs were groomed. The mountain is not a big one, and most good skiers would get through the runs in a few days. There are only about 4 lifts, and a couple could do with upgrading. The resort though is very customer focused and the lessons we had, had only 4 or 5 people in at most, often just 2 or 3, were excellent, and I would definitely recommend this ski school for the quality of the instructors.
    No mountain restaurants but a fairly efficient and very friendly cafe at the base station.
    Accommodation is far superior to that in Europe ( mind you, most accommodation in European resorts is expensive, pokey and poor value for money) for the same price and staff couldn't be more helpful. There was a bus every half hour into the small town, (which always seemed deserted) but the service ended at 9pm which didn't give much time to go to eat out, as there was only 1 restaurant open on site (Kelseys). Getting food up to the apartment was a pain, carrying loads of bags around the town and waiting for the bus in the cold. No shops on site or near the base station.
    We stayed at the Trickle Creek Inn which was lovely, but the breakfast facilities were inadequate and the food poor quality.
    Yrips out were very expensive, prohibitively so, for anyone with a family (dog sledding was $210 - about £110 per person- for a 4 hour trip!) and the restaurants in town were similarly priced to those in the UK.
    Despite this negative sounding report, I would go back, if only for the guaranteed snow and the friendliness of the resort.

  • February 20, 2008
    from United Kingdom

    Hell of a trip to get here - 9 hour flight followed by a 4 and a half hour bus ride. Lovely quiet resort, most places shut by ten pm, but snow is excellent, instructors and rental staff couldn't be more pleasant and helpful. Al;most no queues at the lifts, apart from the the half term week (if you have kids you know what I mean!) and only about a third of the runs were groomed.The mountain is not a big one, and most good skiers would get through the runs in a few days. There are only about 4 lifts, and a couple could do with upgrading. The resort though is very customer focussed and the lessons we had, had only 4 or 5 people in at most, often just 2 or 3, were excellent, and i would definately recommend this ski school for the quality of the instructors.
    No mountain restaurants but a fairly efficient and very frendly cafe at the base station.
    Accomodation is far superior to that in Europe( mind you most accomodation in European resorts is expensive, pokey and poor value for money) for the same price and staff couldn't be more helpful. There was a bus every half hour into the small town, (which always seemed deserted) but the service ended at 9pm which didn't give much time to go to eat out, as there was only 1 restaurant open on site. (kelseys). getting food up to the apartment was a pain, carrying loads of bags around the town and waiting for the bus in the cold. no shops on site or near the base station.
    We stayed at the Trickle Creek Inn which was lovely, but the breakfast facilities were inadequate and the food poor quality.
    trips out were very expensive, prohibitively so for anyone with a family (dogsledding was $210 - about £110 per person- for a 4 hour trip!)and the restaurants in town were similarly priced to those in the UK
    Despite this negative sounding report, I would go back, if only for the guaranteed snow and the friendliness of the resort.

  • February 15, 2006
    from United Kingdom

    When the snow comes, Kimberley is one of the best family resorts in Canada. Few lines and generally quiet slopes make it a great place for beginners. The two main drawbacks are the bottle neck for the Easter chair lift, which can get bad in the early season and even with great snow, the resort will close before the Easter holidays arrive.