North Vancouver’s Grouse Mountain is a snow sport paradise in winter with skiing, ice skating, snow shoeing, a sliding area and fantastic ski conditions.
See below for a description of Grouse Mountain in winter including details on the following topics:
MOUNTAIN CLOSED BUT THEN REOPENS
Grouse Mountain ceased operations for the 2019/20 season on March 16th, 2020, as a result of concerns about the novel coronavirus. At the time there was approximately 375 cm of snow on the mountain at the peak, 285 or so cm at the base and 692 cm for the season.
Since mid-March the resort has been completely closed – for skiing, restaurant services and summer activities. In the first week of June, however, the attraction announced that it will begin reopening in a phased approach.
As of June 22nd, 2020, the Grouse Grind hiking trail can be used again. As of that same date, seasons passholders can also once more use the Skytram to visit the mountain (and hikers walking up the Grouse Grind can pay to ride back down). As of July the resort is open to the general public.
For the most up-to-date details about the current status of the venue see the Grouse Mountain website. For information about other area ski hills (which have also closed because of the coronavirus), see our article about Lower Mainland Ski Hills.
To learn about how the virus is impacting other businesses in the region click COVID-19 Vancouver Cancellations & Closures. For a list of other businesses and attractions that are resuming operations, see our article about Vancouver, COVID-19 and What’s Reopening.
Winter Activities at Grouse Mountain
One of the region’s most popular destinations year-round, Grouse Mountain is Vancouver’s most accessible ski hill and offers the widest range of activities twelve months of the year. During winter the resort becomes especially popular!
For information on Grouse Mountain in the non-snowy season, check out Grouse Mountain in Summer. For information on Grouse Mountain in the winter, see below.
Snowshoe Social Nights
Mondays and Wednesdays are drop in Snowshoe Social Nights from mid-December until the end of March.
The 90-minute sessions are free with a ski pass, membership or general day admission to the resort. Headlamps are required and snowshoes are available for rent. Participants sign-in at the main chalet in time to start snowshoeing sharp at 7 pm.
Click Snowshoe Socials for more details.
The Ski Hill at Grouse
Grouse is one of the North Shore‘s three main local ski hills (with the other two being Cypress Mountain – which has the most lifts and terrain – and Mt. Seymour – which is the best for beginners and in most years boasts the greatest annual snowfall).
Grouse Mountain receives over 1 million visitors per year, and as a ski hill it is highly recommended.
First day of skiing at Grouse Mountain in the 2018/19 season was December 5th. Grouse Mountain finished the 2017/18 season last year with 400 cm of snow still remaining at the peak and 299 cm at the plateau on May 6th, 2018. For comparison, the last day of the 2018/19 season was April 22nd and on that weekend the hill had just 259 cm of snow at the peak and 193 cm at the plateau.
Current Ski Conditions
Conditions as of 9 am on March 13, 2020, are the following:
- New snow in the last 24 hours: 0 cm
- New snow in the last 48 hours: 0 cm
- New snow in the last 7 days: 28 cm
- Total snowfall this season to date: 692 cm
- Total snow making: 53 cm
- Snow depth at peak: 385 cm (so up about 8 cm from a few days ago)
- Snow depth at plateau: 300 cm (so about the same as a few days ago)
- Weather Conditions: -4 degrees (C) with sun and clear visibility
- Tomorrow’s Forecast: mainly cloudy with temperatures ranging between around -4 and -13 degrees
During most of the season hours of operation for skiing and snowboarding are between 9 am and 10 pm on weekdays and on weekends. In late spring, however, weekday hours are often reduced to 1 until 8 pm, but not always. On the last weekend in the spring of 2019, for example, the hours of operation were from 9 am until 10 pm.
For exact details on snow conditions, runs open and lifts in operation, check out Grouse Mountain Current Conditions.
Ski Resort Features
Grouse Mountain has 26 runs and 4 chairs, and its terrain parks are considered the best on the North Shore. In fact, in November 2017, based on a recent poll, Newschoolers, considered by many to be the world’s top skiing website, named Grouse Parks the #3 terrain park in the entire Northwest corner of North America! Whistler-Blackcomb was number one, but Grouse was number 3!
The mountain has runs of all levels, but it’s not a huge ski hill, so during the day expect to ski some of the same slopes at least a couple of times.
Click Grouse Map for a map of the ski hill.
With most ski hills in the area you have to drive by car (or pay for a shuttle bus), but with Grouse Mountain there is easy public bus access, and the parking lot is usually well below snow level.
At Grouse you park in the pay paying lot, get in the aerial Skyride tramway (which is an attraction in itself), and arrive minutes later at the base of the ski hill. It’s fast and easy to get to, plus no worries about winter driving, which in Vancouver is dangerous because nobody knows how to drive in the snow.
Note: In winter, indoor areas of Grouse Mountain are also accessible by wheelchair including the resort’s indoor theatre and restaurants. With all the snow though, it’s not so easy to get around outdoors if you have mobility issues. You will, however, sometimes see folk flying down the hill in ski equipment adapted for people normally in wheelchairs.
Click Lower Mainland Ski Hills for information about all the region’s various ski resorts including a comparison of the different mountains.
Grouse Mountain Winter Activities
Of course there is great skiing and snowboarding in the winter at Grouse Mountain, but also snowshoeing and outdoor skating. Grouse offers some exceptional skiing as well as stunning views, including sights of the city below.
Other activities on the hill that are available year-round include movies in the Peak Chalet’s Theatre in the Sky, and fine dining at a couple of great restaurants.
Grouse Christmas Activities
December is a particularly special month at Grouse Mountain when the resort offers its Peak of Christmas event starting in late November. During this time there are music concerts, gingerbread house displays, sleigh rides, live reindeer to look at, sparkling lights, Santa Claus to visit and other festive Christmas activities.
Admission at Grouse Mountain
A full day of skiing at Grouse costs about $72 for adults, $52 for youth and seniors, and $27 for children (ages 5 to 12), or between $2 and $20 less for night skiing which runs from 4 pm until 10 at night. Children under 5 are free.
If you go up Grouse Mountain for the day but don’t want to ski or snowboard, it’ll still cost between $32 and $59 depending on your age. For that you can snowshoe, skate, play in the snow and enjoy all the special Christmas activities in December, but not ski or snowboard.
Parking at Grouse in winter costs about $8 for 3 hours or $10 for the day.
Tips and Advice
Below are some tips and suggestions to help you make the most out of your visit to Grouse Mountain in winter.
TIP #1: If someone in your group has an annual pass, up to two guests can get 50% off the price of the tram ride up the hill, although the discounts don’t apply to ski tickets.
TIP #2: If you don’t want to ski but still want to go up the hill, make a reservation at Grouse Mountain’s fabulous The Observatory. The restaurant isn’t inexpensive, but complementary Skyride tram rides up to the top are included with the reservation.
TIP #3: Grouse Mountain offers a special season ticket, the Y2Play Pass, which is available for just a limited time each spring. The pass is good for skiing until the end of the season, and then the entire next season as well. The Y2Play is such a deal for locals it makes Grouse a favourite for families and young skiers. The pass can cost less than around $80 for children 12 and under, which is a crazy good deal.
TIP #4: Night skiing at Grouse is fantastic. It’s a few dollars cheaper than skiing all day, the crowds are minimal, and on a clear evening the views of Vancouver below are breath-taking. Also, with night rates starting at 4 pm, if you go skiing late in the season, like at the end of March or in early April, you can still get a couple of hours of beautiful sunshine. What’s more, unlike some mountains in British Columbia, a fair portion of the resort’s ski runs are lit up and open at night. Over half the mountain’s terrain is accessible daily until closing, in fact, including popular runs like Centennial, The Cut, Grouse Park, Heaven’s Sake and Peak.
Night Skiing & Evening Activities Activities
Night Skiing at Grouse Mountain can be a wonderful experience, especially on clear nights when the lights of Vancouver sparkle in the distance. In addition to skiing, on winter evenings there is also snowboarding, ice skating, crazy carpet fun in the Sliding Zone, sleigh rides and all sorts of other fun activities.
For more information, click Night Skiing at Grouse Mountain.
For reference, the 2018/19 season ran from December 5th, 2018, until April 22nd, 2019. Grouse Mountain reported a base of 175 cm at the plateau and 250 cm at the peak, with 555 cm of snowfall for the season (which compares with 1072 cm in the 2017/18 season). The first day of the 2019/2020 season was on November 30th, 2019.
For further information about the resort and Metro Vancouver skiing opportunities, see the following:
- Click Grouse in Summer for information about other activities in the late spring, summer and early fall.
- See Mountain Ziplining for details about ziplining opportunities at Grouse Mountain.
- Check out the Peak of Christmas for information on festive activities at Grouse Mountain in December.
- Click Grouse Mountain for the ski hill’s official website and more information.
- Check out Lower Mainland Ski Hills to learn about the region’s other various places to ski.