If you're a contest kind of person, pay attention: Tourism Whistler is offering the chance to win a month at Whistler – including airfare, accommodation, lift passes, ski/snowboard equipment, a variety of experiences, AND up to $4,200 to offset the cost of taking a month off work. To enter the "Whistler Sabbatical Project," go to whistler.com/wouldyoudoit.
KICKING HORSE, B.C.
The Brewster Banff Airport Express, which offers transfers to and from Calgary International Airport, now continues on from Banff and Lake Louise to Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, travelling on the newly improved four-lane highway and across the new park bridge over Kicking Horse Canyon. Less-experienced skiers who want the Kicking Horse experience should check out the new Learning Centre in the resort plaza.
The new Polar Peak Lift brings Fernie Alpine Resort to 1,082 metres. The lift takes skiers above the tree line to the summit of one of the highest peaks in the Lizard Range, Polar Peak, and to 22 new runs (bringing the total at Fernie to 162 marked runs).
BIG WHITE, B.C.
Sometimes it seems if we don't capture it on film, it didn't really happen. Big White is launching a Teen Media program that helps Gen Y skiers create videos of their time in the park. And because teens are creatures of the night, TELUS Park will have night sessions featuring pounding music, a snowboard cross course and dozens of rails and spines.
LE MASSIF DE CHARLEVOIX, QUE.
Ride the rails from Quebec City to get to Le Massif de Charlevoix in comfort and style. At the hill, check out the new 100-metre pedestrian and skier bridge connecting the boarding areas of the Massif Express Gondola and the Grande-Pointe Express Lift, and the pathway leading to the Base Chalet.
Smugglers' Notch Resort and Burton Snowboards have teamed up to create Burton Riglet Park to introduce kids aged 3 to 5 to snowboarding. From a "treehouse," an elevated platform with a balance area and ramps to ride down, kids can play on small hills, box-style rails, pyramids and a mini-halfpipe. Skiers will have more ways to get there as Porter Airlines is launching service to Burlington, Vermont on Dec. 15.
ASPEN SNOWMASS, COLO.
A new $7-million high-speed quad reduces lift time from 18 minutes to seven minutes and opens new terrain with different angles higher up the mountain. Also, Aspen/Snowmass is offering free tours of Highland Bowl on Wednesdays at 11 a.m. to guests comfortable skiing double-black-diamond terrain. Don't forget to pick up your free sunscreen and coffee offered daily at the base of the mountain.
PARK CITY, UTAH
Oh, the luxury! After a multimillion dollar enhancement, Canyons Resort now offers the first heated chairlift in North America: the Orange Bubble Express. The enclosed quad lift offers cozy comfort – and gets skiers to the top of the mountain in only nine minutes.