After two years of construction, the largest ski terrain expansion in North America will make its public debut on opening day at Red Mountain Resort in Rossland, B.C, currently scheduled for Dec. 14.
The 997-acre expansion of the resort's Grey Mountain rivals the size of Washington's Mt. Baker and increases Red's inbounds terrain by 60 percent. With nearly 2,800 acres of skiable slopes, the expansion makes Red (about two and a half hours north of Spokane) the eighth largest ski area in Canada and the 18th largest in North America.
The expansion also makes Red "more family-friendly," says Fran Richards, Red's vice president of marketing, as the majority of the new terrain offers wide-open runs for intermediate and beginner skiers. Like the other mountains at Red, the volcanic shape of Grey Mountain allows for a 360-degree skiing experience for anyone with a single lift ticket.
"Red is one of the few places where you can take the lift to summit of the peak and ski all sides of the mountain, which is pretty rare," Richards explains.
Even with the massive expansion, Richards promises that Red, known for its steep chutes and powdery glades, will retain its authenticity.
"Some of the other resorts have gotten so big, and so trafficked, that you really don't get that sense of escapism that you do at Red," says Richards. "We still want to keep the uniqueness and independent feel. Our goal with the resort, really, is to build it for the next generation of snowboarders and skiers."