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Christmas skiing in Canada - will it happen?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Does anyone have any “on the ground” opinion of whether skiing in Canada will be open for foreign visitors by this Christmas?

I know the vaccination programme isn’t that widespread there yet so I’m wondering if they’ll be allowing us in. Me and MrB will have been vaccinated but not sure about our teens.
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@bambionskiis, More's the pity I am not on the ground, but have booked to go to the West Coast in January 2022. Trudeau and the Canucks are conspiring to make the EU's roll out look efficient as 6 in 100 Canadians have received a vaccine, the UK figure is 33 in 100. Procurement is a massive issue for them as they were slow to source and order. Really hope you and the family get away and will follow this thread with interest. Smile
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I think, given the way the virus was initially spreading in the USA, Canada kinda had its hand forced to close the borders. Might be more likely to change now Trump is gone, if Biden can be seen to be making a good job of things. We were due to go over to see our girl at Christmas just past, but that never happened obviously. She is saying that the ski hills are still fairly busy with just domestic users, so no pressure from them to open up the borders.
There may be a bit more pressure to open up for summer trade. We haven’t seen her for over a year now and were considering planning Christmas 2021 to try again. In the end we decided it was more promising for them to come over to Europe and we are all booked to go to the Domolites for Christmas instead, her man is from Italian descent but has never been to Italy, so we have everything crossed. We just need her to get her Permanent Residency through, as she can’t leave Canada whilst it is getting processed.
But it’s all guesswork at the moment, it’s still a long way off and lots of things could happen in the meantime. Hope it works out for ya!
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Canada has already banned cruise ships until Feb 2022. Vaccine roll-out has been slow, they are not even expecting to start vaccinating healthy under 60 year olds until July. There is also the political issues of opening international travel before opening the land border.

It's possible, but I wouldn't be confident on it. Europe seems like a better bet.
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Cheers guys for your replies. Have to see your general concensus reflects mine

@Snowsartre, really hope you and us get there - fingers crossed!!

@dode, wow that’s tough for you. Waiting for immigration is such a frustrating process I know. Sorry you didn’t get there at Christmas (nor did we).

@boarder2020, didn’t know that about cruise ships.
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boarder2020 wrote:
Canada has already banned cruise ships until Feb 2022. Vaccine roll-out has been slow, they are not even expecting to start vaccinating healthy under 60 year olds until July. There is also the political issues of opening international travel before opening the land border.

It's possible, but I wouldn't be confident on it. Europe seems like a better bet.


Actually in BC at least, despite the slow start, the plan is to be done with all adults, first dose at least - but also have J&J now so that could be the only one - by Canada Day (1 July)
I assume other provinces will be similar as vaccine is dished out proportionately. Territories are way head because the plan was to do remote areas first.
Whether that actually happens is another question. Wouldn't surprise me as other mass vaccinations seem to be done pretty efficiently - Just have to hope JT has his supply contracts worked out properly, and the EU doesn't decide to stop shipping it!

US should also be done vaccinating, though a bit of resistance there so may need a vaccine passport? Since tourism is a big thing, I think there will be pressure to get it going again, so you might have a half decent chance. Though that assumes vaccines keep working against anything new that brews up, and who knows what else...
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@stuarth, wow 1 July? That’s quite a catch up then and is altogether more positive. Fingers crossed you guys can get hold of enough of the vaccine to make this happen.

Yes, the pesky variants are the potential fly in the ointment for us all.
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@bambionskiis, I’m feeling for ya coz I remember all the research you put into your cancelled Christmas trip last year on here. Fingers crossed
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Christmas is problematic.

It's the beginning of the winter. So if there's a new variant that escape the vaccine, it could ignite a new wave of infection. Countries are quite quick to shut their border on short notice these days. I wouldn't risk it. You may find yourself at the airport watching the announcement of the closing of the border.

Easter is a lot safer, in relative terms. (I was hoping Canada may open its border by THIS Easter. But sadly that's not happening)
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On the plus side - they don't have that many people to vaccinate Smile

The only thing I recall was that hotels in Banff cost more in the summer than in the winter. I guess that means there's a big summer tourism industry so they'd probably like to get that running as quickly as possible, might contribute to the Canada Day deadline.

Really hope you get there.
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I hope they open next winter too as I’ve got Fernie booked for Jan and Whistler in Mar, both with Crystal so will get a refund if it’s no good.
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What is the difference between « opening international travel before opening the land border« 

I understood that currently to avoid having to quarantine on arrival in Canada, was to cross into via a land boarder .

Caveat, I don’t know how difficult it is currently to enter America, Seattle for example, but mrs DTB and D2 are hoping/ needing to visit elderly father and D1 in BC this summer
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I think you're technically still supposed to quarantine even if you enter Canada via the USA from a land border. But as with most things Covid Canada is making the UK / EU / USA look positively coherent and well organised so I suspect there's no one checking.....

Whilst I'd love to believe the everyone has a 1st vaccine by 1st of July I'll believe it when I see it as it's more likely to be another in a long list of false promises and u-turns.

In reality I think the whole economy aspect will be forcing an open of some description by the summer but that's purely personal and optimistic opinion.
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Quote:

Actually in BC at least, despite the slow start, the plan is to be done with all adults, first dose at least - but also have J&J now so that could be the only one - by Canada Day (1 July)


Alberta are saying phase 2 will be April to June, with phase 3 (general population) starting after that, so I don't see them meeting the July 1st target https://www.alberta.ca/covid19-vaccine.aspx of course these things could change,but there would have to be a huge ramp up vaccination rates.


Quote:

What is the difference between « opening international travel before opening the land border«


A lot is political. Imagine an EU country opening international travel to those outside the EU while having their land borders with EU closed. I'm not saying Canada won't consider it, but it's another thing potentially going to slow things down.

Quote:

but mrs DTB and D2 are hoping/ needing to visit elderly father and D1 in BC this summer


You can get permission to enter. A friend of mine got permission because his long term partner is Canadian. They had a mandatory hotel quarantine that was not cheap. So it's possible, but lots of paperwork, costs, and general hoops to jump through.
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It's 9 months away FFS. Of course they'll be up and running by then.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Quote:

It's 9 months away FFS. Of course they'll be up and running by then


The resorts will be, the question is will international tourists be allowed in, and will they need to quarantine. The fact they have already banned cruise ships until February 2022 makes me wonder how you can be so certain Christmas will be fine.
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Ski lifts are “up and running” right now!
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@boarder2020, They are issuing work visas for next season so I think it is safe to assume you'll be able to go.
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Quote:

Ski lifts are “up and running” right now!


I don't think anybody said they weren't. The issue is not ski lifts being open, but foreigners actually being allowed in.I say this as someone that would be there right now if it was possible!

Quote:

@boarder2020, They are issuing work visas for next season so I think it is safe to assume you'll be able to go.


I'm pretty sure people with work visas were never stopped from entering. Much different situation than tourists being allowed in though! Also I am fairly confident those workers had to go through the quarantine process which is expensive and time consuming (enough to put holiday makers off).

Don't get me wrong I think there's a chance canada will be open for international tourists by the beginning of next season. I just don't see how anyone can be remotely confident of the fact, I certainly wouldn't be putting money down yet. Especially when the only thing that seems set is stone is cruise ships won't be allowed in until Feb 2022 at the earliest.
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boarder2020 wrote:
Quote:

Actually in BC at least, despite the slow start, the plan is to be done with all adults, first dose at least - but also have J&J now so that could be the only one - by Canada Day (1 July)


Alberta are saying phase 2 will be April to June, with phase 3 (general population) starting after that, so I don't see them meeting the July 1st target https://www.alberta.ca/covid19-vaccine.aspx of course these things could change,but there would have to be a huge ramp up vaccination rates.


Quote:

What is the difference between « opening international travel before opening the land border«


A lot is political. Imagine an EU country opening international travel to those outside the EU while having their land borders with EU closed. I'm not saying Canada won't consider it, but it's another thing potentially going to slow things down.

Quote:

but mrs DTB and D2 are hoping/ needing to visit elderly father and D1 in BC this summer


You can get permission to enter. A friend of mine got permission because his long term partner is Canadian. They had a mandatory hotel quarantine that was not cheap. So it's possible, but lots of paperwork, costs, and general hoops to jump through.


Right, time to stop digging (as on the other thread).
OP asked if someone on the ground knew something.

-BC is not Alberta.
-Vaccine orders are a federal thing.
-Vaccine injecting is a provincial thing (but I find it hard to believe they would be far apart between provinces for many reasons, not least because they and/or the federal government would help each other if that were case)
-Last week BCs Provincial Health officer said based on current projections she would hope to be done first injections by July 1. She is not someone who visits BC now and then, who asked a friend, who asked their dog... She is the actual person in charge, and seems to know what she is doing.

Whether this happens according to plan - well let's hope it does. For us, and several others on this thread, there's a bit more at stake than just a vacation
Whether this relates to opening to international tourists by Christmas - who knows, but let's hope it does.

I'd imagine if the former happens, and it does in the US, the latter would happen because there would be little enthusiasm either side of the border for anything else, assuming no worsening of the situation - tourism from the rest of the world is fairly insignificant compared to the US.
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and the cruise ship ban may not be a particularly good indicator.
- The cruise ship season (in Vancouver at least) ends around October and doesn't get going again until April-ish. So it would have made no difference if you banned them until October 2021 or April 2022.
- Cruise ships don't have that great optics with respect to the whole COVID thing
- I think I recall seeing somewhere that they are not particularly significant economically.
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^1 re cruise ships , can't see the comparison either , although an earner for Vancouver think the 2022 start make sense ,

I think the success of reservation system for vail and the lack of big covid outbreaks at ski resorts in North America bodes well for next season , although I would make sure you had a good refund policy for a package holiday before booking this far ahead .

next reviews are march 21st for usa and April 21st for international , global take up of vaccine bound to be a big factor and maybe vaccine passports , but that's a whole new thread Toofy Grin
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Quote:

BC is not Alberta


Yes and Scotland is not England, but you think it doesn't have an effect on UK's policies?! Canada are not going to only open up certain provinces, so if some provinces have issues it's going to slow everything down.

I have plenty of friends on the ground (mostly BC) that tell me the vaccination program is a mess and they don't expect to get their vaccine on time. Sweaman22 view "Whilst I'd love to believe the everyone has a 1st vaccine by 1st of July I'll believe it when I see it as it's more likely to be another in a long list of false promises and u-turns", pretty much sums up their feelings.

Quote:

I think I recall seeing somewhere that they are not particularly significant economically


"Vancouver's cruise industry will be critical to the region's recovery, it stimulates $3.17m in direct economic activity for each ship that calls at Canada Place, and $2.2bn of total economic impact." - the quote is from port of Vancouver so obviously a little bias, but if the numbers are true it's certainly not an insignificant part of the local economy.

Quote:

The cruise ship season (in Vancouver at least) ends around October and doesn't get going again until April-ish.


I think you are getting confused with whale watching season NehNeh Alaska cruise ship season is May to September. Any USA ships travelling from us mainland to Alaska have to stop in Canada (https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/2021/03/06/senators-introduce-new-bill-allow-cruise-ships-sail-alaska-without-stopping-canada) so there is a lot of money to be made this time of year. Plus plenty of cruise ships do Vancouver - Vancouver Alaska trips.

The question is why would they ban cruise ships until 2022. For international travel they just review it every 3 months. Why not do something similar for cruise ships? Perhaps because of logistics more time is needed but could do every 6 months. Just seems like quite a negative step if they really everyone will be vaccinated by July!

If covid has taught is anything it's that everything is completely unpredictable (look at the will skiing happen for Brits in 2020/21 thread for how many defiant "yes we will definitely be able to ski this winter posts!). That's why I'm a little confused people seem to be so sure about Canada being possible at Christmas. I think there's definitely a chance, but not the certainty some people are saying. That's before you even account for new variants, potential time and cost of mandatory hotel quarantine etc.
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boarder2020 wrote:

I have plenty of friends on the ground (mostly BC) that tell me the vaccination program is a mess and they don't expect to get their vaccine on time. Sweaman22 view "Whilst I'd love to believe the everyone has a 1st vaccine by 1st of July I'll believe it when I see it as it's more likely to be another in a long list of false promises and u-turns", pretty much sums up their feelings.

I would have told you the same about USA a month ago.

But now I've gotten 3 invitation to get my vaccine jab in the last week. And I was able to book appointments for the next day!

I thought I should tell everyone I know who is waiting for their appointments where to go. Turns out most of them got their appointments within the last couple weeks. Many already got their 1st jab!

The pessimism WAS well founded initially. But "If covid has taught is anything it's that everything is completely unpredictable", which can even apply on the positive side too!

Quote:
Any USA ships travelling from us mainland to Alaska have to stop in Canada

No, they don't "have to". They can stop in Seattle instead of Vancouver. Kind of bad for Canada of course.

Quote:
The question is why would they ban cruise ships until 2022. For international travel they just review it every 3 months. Why not do something similar for cruise ships? Perhaps because of logistics more time is needed but could do every 6 months.

A plane drops a few hundreds passengers at most when it lands. A cruise ship? Thousands, or even up to tens of thousands!
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@boarder2020,

I'm a bit puzzled as to why you feel the need to keep arguing about everything to do with Vancouver/BC?

I know when cruise ships are here. why? not because a friend tells me but because I used to go past the cruise ship terminal every workday. And why do you need to argue that it's not April to October -ish, but may to September - point is they are not usually there in February.

I know how much a hotel costs and a ski pass is in Whistler. Why? Not because some guys brothers friends sister told me, but because in normal ski season I actually go and stay there every week.

I know about the vaccine program status according to the BC government. Why? Not because the life and livelihoods of a friend's dog depends on it, but ours does so I tend to pay attention.
Unless your friends are the likes of Justin Trudeau, John Horgan, Gen. Fortin, or Adrian Dix, I suspect they do not have as much information about the state of vaccinations in BC as Dr Bonnie Henry.

I know where BC is and how it is governed Why? not because I visit it now and then, but because its where I live, and I get to vote for the government


Last edited by Ski the Net with snowHeads on Tue 9-03-21 20:53; edited 16 times in total
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@abc,

I think there is actually some sort of wacky US maritime law that means the cruise ships have to stop off in Canada somewhere on the way to Alaska.
Sure that could be changed easy enough though if needs be.
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In case you think it's all fantasy about reopening, yesterday both UBC and SFU ( @boarder2020, ask your friends to tell you if they are or are not two big Universities), announced that they were planning to resume full in person operations from September based upon the planned vaccination rate.


Last edited by And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports. on Tue 9-03-21 20:38; edited 2 times in total
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@stuarth, ^^^^^^^^^ that's very encouraging news snowHead
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stuarth wrote:
@abc,

I think there is actually some sort of wacky US maritime law that means the cruise ships have to stop off in Canada somewhere on the way to Alaska.

You're right. I forgot that part.

The law is to stop foreign flagged ships carrying Americans sailing up and the down the US coasts. Only US flag ships can do that.

But as most cruise ships are flying Bermuda (or other) flags. They skirt that law by stopping at Canada.
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Yes.

I’m a doctor in BC. We have a ton of vaccines ordered (I think the most per head in the world?). It started slow but they are rolling out faster now and everyone should have one shot by July. It’ll get done by September and they are really really going to want your cash! December seems pretty safe bet to me unless there is a variant that the vaccines don’t cover.

People grumble but the government didn’t promise a faster roll out, that I recall, so far they are working to schedule.
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stuarth wrote:
@abc,

I think there is actually some sort of wacky US maritime law that means the cruise ships have to stop off in Canada somewhere on the way to Alaska.
Sure that could be changed easy enough though if needs be.


Referred to as the Jones Act. Might be a bit archaic, but one way to keep the maritime ship building industry alive.
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Quote:
as with most things Covid Canada is making the UK / EU / USA look positively coherent and well organised so I suspect there's no one checking...
.


shurely shome mishtake??? Shocked Puzzled if that's true, may God help you!
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USA 1600 deaths per million. UK 1800. Canada 587. Can’t easily find EU number. So yes, god help them. I’ve had 1 patient with a positive COVID test. Geography is on our side but I think they have managed it better here.
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@motdoc, assume by 'here' you mean Canada?
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motdoc wrote:
USA 1600 deaths per million. UK 1800. Canada 587. Can’t easily find EU number. So yes, god help them. I’ve had 1 patient with a positive COVID test. Geography is on our side but I think they have managed it better here.


and so far in BC managed to keep schools open throughout (except April/may last year), which has been massively beneficial to the kids, parents, and employers I think.

That said, looks like a fairly spectacular cock-up by VCH/provincial government this week however with the booking system, or lack of!
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I'm in interior BC, Nelson. Think there's going to be a spike in a month, everyone seems to be slacking off and the varients are here now and spring break next week. Fingers crossed but I'm guessing a third wave before the vaccine benefit kicks in.
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I keep saying there is a chance things will be completely open, but you are talking in guarantees and assurances, which I don't think anyone is in a position to do right now. Many people said the same thing this time last year about this season and ended up with egg on their face. If Canada was producing their own vaccines I'd be more confident, but they are reliant on others to supply them, which as we've seen can be problematic! Trudeau sums it up nicely "We have reasons to be optimistic we’re going to be able to move things forward, but at the same time, we also know that these are global supply chains that are being set up and there’s always possibility for disruptions".

Quote:

shurely shome mishtake??? Shocked if that's true, may God help you!


I think they've handled it pretty well. Deaths are much lower than other places (geography helps, but still commendable), and seems like life is going on without as much disruption as elsewhere (e.g. ski resorts have been open non stop this season). The exception would be the vaccine; slow roll-out, zero production meaning reliant on other countries, the fact that Canada had to take vaccines from covax.

@stuarth Until this year I've been spending 3 to 6 months in BC every year for the last 7 or so, so I have a decent understanding of that part of the world. Plus I have lots of friends there who I talk to regularly that are smart and have zero reason to lie about things. I think if you only allow snowheads to have an opinion on a place they happened to be living there would not be too many posts snowHead besides not all of us want to live in Canada full time!
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Quote:

If Canada was producing their own vaccines I'd be more confident, but they are reliant on others to supply them, which as we've seen can be problematic!

Personally, I think it wouldn't be lack of vaccine that'll stop the border from opening.

The virus hasn't run its full course yet. There maybe new variants the vaccine doesn't prevent. There may come a far deadlier mutation that even a small percentage of infection will be unacceptable. (or a combination of the above).

I've long ago given up on trying to understand why people make arrangement a year in advance even in time when we don't know what tomorrow brings.
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