Kimberley Alpine Resort has had a tragic start to its season. On December 18th, a fire broke out of the North Star Expres Lift, leading to its indefinite closure. And now, more twists have been added to this depressing drama. After an investigation conducted by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, they found the cause of the fire to be arson. The resort also confirmed that due to supply chain issues, the quad will not reopen this season. According to Ski Area Management, the “fire demolished the lift control building and the electronic equipment within [it].” Season pass holders are being allowed to defer their passes until the 22-23 season. With this being the only lift out of their main base village, this originally made guests have to hike to reach the other upper mountain lifts. Thankfully, Kimberley Alpine has developed some unique solutions to these problems.
In response, Kimberley has created a unique cat-skiing operation that helps guests access the upper mountain. The resort got three-cabin cats from Revelstoke, Kicking Horse, and a local logging contractor. Guests who want to use the cat can reserve a ride the night before. Alternatively, guests can hike up to the Tamarack Double Chairlift, which takes twenty to forty minutes. Some of the other options created since the fire include:
“- Offering a ski/snowboard delivery service by snowmobile up the Ridgeway Road for those who choose to walk to the backside
– Adding night lights to the Owl T-bar so that the long tradition of night skiing in Kimberley can continue
– Looking for an alternative location for the rail park, possibly in the base area
– Getting the Easter top BBQ going again
– And providing the Kootenay Haus to give guests access to a warm building without having to come back to the base area
– Plus events and activities in the base including the skating rink to create family fun”
A video of the cat skiing experience is below.