Getting To Big White

Getting To Big White

9 Day British Columbia Ski Tour
Wagner Custome Skis
Canadian Ski & Snowboard Tours

Where is Big White?

Big White is located in the British Columbia Interior, Canada. The Big White Ski Resort is situated on Big White Mountain, on the edge of the Monashee Mountains, 56km (35 miles) from Kelowna, the largest city in the Okanagan Valley. Or from Kelowna to the base of the Gem Lake chair lift, it’s only 45km (30 miles).

Big White Ski Resort is 450km east of Vancouver (5.5 hour drive) and 650km west by road from Calgary (8.5 hour drive). The address for Big White is 5315 Big White Road, Kelowna.

Flights to Kelowna

Most travellers access Big White Ski Resort by flying into Kelowna airport, which is 14km from downtown Kelowna and 59km from Big White (a 50-60 minute drive).

Various airlines operate regular flights to Kelowna from other Canadian cities as well as Phoenix. You can use our flight search aggregator to compare flight routes and prices.

Shuttles from Kelowna Airport to Big White

There are regular shuttles from the airport at Kelowna to Big White, or you can get a private limo service. 

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Driving to Big White

Once at Big White you won’t need a car, but if Big White isn’t your only destination, getting a rental car at the airport is another option. A large number of car rentals are available from Kelowna Airport. From Kelowna, the drive is east/southeast on highway 97, then onto highway 33 and left onto Big White Road.

The drive up Big White Road is reasonably easy for a ski resort. At times the road is snow covered and you’ll need to exercise caution, but it’s a wide road that’s not particularly windy or steep.

Most Big White accommodation offers dedicated parking. For day trippers the main parking is at the Happy Valley parking lot, and there’s a little parking near the Ridge Day Lodge and at the base of the Black Forest Express. Advanced riders tend to park down at Gem Lake, which cuts about 8km off the drive up from Kelowna.

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Getting Around Big White

Once at Big White you can’t really use your car much because parking is very limited near the mid-mountain car-free village. It’s not only a pedestrian village but also ski-through, with the Easy Street green run passing through the village. The snow here is generally very packed down so it’s easy to walk along.

The Big White Road goes from the base up to the village, with various small roads that lead off to the accommodations. These roads can be used to walk about although they’re a little dark in the evening. There is also a walking path between Happy Valley at the base and the mid-mountain village, and for those staying in private vacation rentals across at the Snow Pines Estates, there’s a walking path that heads across to the village. These cross a couple of ski runs and the many foot prints in the snow mar the otherwise perfect grooming of the slopes! You’ll definitely want good snow boots for these trails.

Big White has a free on-mountain shuttle bus that stops at major points around the resort every half hour and runs from 7-11pm. Maps and timetables are available from your lodging.

A quick mode of transport between Happy Valley and the mid-mountain village is the Lara Gondola, which is free for pedestrians.

Big White offers a shopping shuttle that heads down to Kelowna during the day.

Ski Resorts Nearby

Silver Star Ski Resort is 123km north of Big White, which equates to about 2 hours by road. There is no shuttle anymore for day trippers and no helicopter transfer anymore, and the only option other than self-driving is a costly private transfer.

Revelstoke Mountain Resort is 250km northeast of Big White.

Sun Peaks Resort is 271km to the northwest.

Cat Skiing Near Big White

Monashee Powder Snowcats offers multi-day cat skiing trips that sell out well in advance.

Monashee Powder Snowcats is located in the western Monashee Range and within vague vicinity of Big White, so Big White can be a good spot to get the legs warmed up before hitting the cat skiing powder. Transportation is provided by Monashee Powder Snowcats from Kelowna airport at 12pm on your check-in day.