The Mount Seymour Ski Resort is one of three resorts within 40 minutes of downtown Vancouver and has the best value for money season pass of the lot – particularly if you get it before the end of September.
Day passes are also reasonable with full day, half day and evening passes available.
Boasting 4 parks and 40 downhill runs (plus a bit of backcountry (off piste) terrain) Mount Seymour also has a good mix of beginner, intermediate, advanced and expert terrain to keep riders of all levels happy.
With a vertical drop of 330 metres and ride-able terrain of 200 acres Seymour is the smallest in the family of Vancouver ski resorts in terms of size (Cypress 600 acres & Grouse 212 acres) though it is very close in size to Grouse and has more trail options than grouse (26 downhill runs).
|Resort Elevation: 1,265m (4,150ft)
Vertical Drop: 330m (1,198ft)
Ride-able area: 200 acres
No. of Lifts: 5 (3 chairs and 2 magic carpets)
No. of runs: 39 (plus off piste)
7 (18%) Beginner (Green)
24 (62%) Intermediate (Blue)
8 (20%) Advanced (Black Diamond)
No. of parks: 4
Night Riding: Yes (18 runs)
Whilst their website states that they have 40 runs with a proportion of 40% beginner, 40% intermediate and 20% advanced/expert, analysis of the trail map reveals that they might want to take a night class in mathematics!
By my count there are 7 Green runs, 24 Blue runs and 8 Black Diamond runs. Which, if I’m not wrong, adds up to: 18% beginner, 62% intermediate and 20% advanced. Maybe they go to the trouble of classifying sections of the blue runs that actually qualify as Green runs. That would be my best explanation – if anyone knows this for sure I’d be interested to know (just comment below).
The Terrain Parks
This mountain has a reputation as one with great park facilities so if you’re a freestyler or looking to get into more freestyle riding this could be your mountain. Of course there is plenty of down-hillling too, if you feel like going off for some trail or off piste runs, but this is a freestylers dream.
Check out this review of Mt Seymour’s terrain parks.
All 4 terrain parks are also lit up at night so there is little restriction to which time of day or night you want to practice your latest trick.
Mount Seymour has 4 parks and the bragging rights for the first terrain park in the region, which they first built in 1993. Plus it was named in 2nd place of the best parks in Western Canada in 2013 by SBS Resort Guide.
Mushroom Park is the beginner park and has only small features for those new to the park.
Northlands is the intermediate park with medium jumps and features.
The Pit is an intermediate to advanced park; and
Young Guns is the advanced park with the biggest jumps and features on Mt Seymour
Such a variety and progression of parks makes for a convenient way to progress in the park. I have a season pass for Mt Seymour’s 2014/2015 season and I’m going in to learn the park for the first time! I’ll definitely be starting in Mushroom!
Night Riding, Half Day & Full Day Passes
18 of Seymours trails are lit up so you can enjoy them, and all four parks are also lit up as mentioned. Night passes, valid from 6pm to 10pm can be purchased for $31 for an adult (19-64 years). Or you can get a half day pass, which is valid from 3pm to 10pm to get some extra time in. See the full list of prices below – taxes not included.
|Night (6pm to 10pm)
|Half Day (3pm to 10pm)
|Full Day (open to 10pm)
Tot’s (5 & under) are free. Family passes are available for half day passes ($111) and full day passes ($149) and include up to 2 Adults and 2 Children or Youth. Extra children or youth add ons to the family pass available for $34 per youth/child.
The Mt Seymour website has a good interactive trail map on their website. Check it out here or by clicking the image below.
Usual opening date
As Mt Seymour does not have snowmaking facilities the opening date can vary. As you can see below the opening date has varied from November 25 to January 5 over the last 5 years.
Past 5 years opening dates:
2010/2011 Season: November 25, 2010
2011/2012 Season: November 25, 2011
2012/2013 Season: December 7, 2012
2013/2014 Season: January 5, 2014 (some beginner slopes opened earlier)
2014/2015 Season: Yet to open (at time of writing)
Usual closing date
The last day is usually around the last or 2nd to last Sunday of April. This seems to be more steady than the opening date.
Past 5 years closing dates:
2010/2011 Season: April 24, 2011
2011/2012 Season: April 15, 2012
2012/2013 Season: April 28, 2013
2013/2014 Season: April 20, 2014
2014/2015 Season: Yet to close (at time of writing)
These are the typical hours. Subject to change and of course subject to weather.
Monday to Friday: 9:30am to 4pm (except Brockton Chair which Is 10:30am to 3pm)
Weekends and Holidays: 9am to 4pm (except Brockton Chair which Is 10am to 3pm)
Monday to Friday: 9:30am to 10pm (except Brockton Chair which Is 10:30am to 4pm)
Weekends and Holidays: 9am to 10pm (except Brockton Chair which Is 10am to 4pm)
Christmas Eve & Christmas Day: 9am to 4pm (except Brockton Chair which Is 10am to 3pm)
Friday’s: 10am to 8pm (except Brockton Chair which Is 11:00am to 4pm)
Weekends and Holidays: 9am to 5pm (except Brockton Chair which Is 10am to 4pm)
Getting to Seymour
Around 40 minutes from downtown Vancouver Mt Seymour is a very convenient resort located on the east side of North Vancouver.
By car: Use 1700 Mt Seymour Road for GPS or check out directions from downtown here.
By Public Transport: Mt Seymour runs a shuttle bus which leaves from Londsdale Quay, North Vancouver so you’ll need to make your way there first. Pick up on Londsdale Quay is in front of the ‘Bean Around the World’ Coffee Shop on the corner of Londsdale Quay & Carrie Cates Ct. There is also a pick up location at the Park Gate community centre. See the Mount Seymour Shuttle Bus page for more details.
What do you think of the Snowboarding on Seymour?
Are you more of a free-rider or a free-styler? Or a bit of both? How does Mt Seymour suit your purposes. What do you think of the backcountry riding? Leave a comment below.
My (First) Seymour Experience
Date: January 7, 2015
Transport: Mt Seymour Shuttle Bus
Conditions: Early season – limited runs open, low coverage. Sunny and warm.
Time on mountain: Arrived 1:10pm, left 8:50pm
I have a season pass for the 2014/15 season so I will update this as I go through the season.
It’s been a slow start to the season for Mt Seymour in terms of snow – as it has been for most of the resorts on the west coast in North America. Since they have no snow making they are reliant on mother nature – or should I say Ullr.
This meant limited runs open – in fact there was only really one not counting the learner slopes around the magic carpet. This meant I got a bit repetitive so at the end of the night I hit the baby slopes to practice riding in switch direction.
It was, unsurprisingly, quite crowd free for most of the day though it did pick up after 6pm as it was the first night for night skiing. The lift line went from non-existent to short queues.
There were plenty of things poking through the snow to scratch up the board due to the low coverage and I couldn’t bear to look at the base of my board until the next day – it wasn’t too bad in the end but will need a wax. Seeing the sparks coming off edges of other boarders was disconcerting!
But of course this low coverage is not Seymour’s fault and I’m sure they are as frustrated at the weather as the rest of us. Despite the conditions was still a great day/night out.
The views were spectacular all day. The sun was out on the mountain but there was a sea of fog as far as the eye from about 700 metres down. The occasional high point poked through the fog resembling islands.
The views became even more picturesque as the sun started to go down. The fog contrasted against the rich oranges, yellows, reds and pinks of the sky made for a spectacular sunset. And as the night wore on the lights below the fog set up a glow producing an eerily alien looking vista.
Unfortunately my phone was out of battery before nightfall!
The runs that were open were well lit up and I look forward to seeing what else is open during the night when the rest of the mountain is open.
Seymour is a family owned resort and I think this definitely shows. You get a sense of that relaxed, friendly, welcoming environment compared to some of the more commercial and dry company owned resorts.
They have a great Whiskey Jack Room which has tables where you can eat if you bring your own food and also has lockers for hire to keep your stuff in whilst riding, which is really handy when you’ve taken the shuttle up.
Lockers are just $2 for the day. I was a bit cheeky and took my own padlock. There were lockers without paid locks on them which you can use your own padlock on. Not sure how easy that would be on a busy day though.
I ate in the bar and the beef burger was tasty as was the thai chicken soup that came with it. Service was great and again a very welcoming, cozy atmosphere – very attentive but you got the feeling there were more staff on than was necessary for the number of people in there.
After dinner and a couple of drinks I was ready for the night session.
The Seymour Shuttle
The shuttle, leaving from North Vancouver just as you come off the sea bus (3-4 minute walk from the Seabus) didn’t take too long to get to Seymour – around 40mins. But from where I started in the west end of downtown it took 1 hour 45 minutes from when I left the house. This felt like a bit of an effort when you consider it would have only taken around 35-40mins to drive.
The shuttle stops at Londsdale Quay (next to the Bean Around the World) and the Parkgate community centre. The other option would be to get a bus to the Parkgate stop which might end up slightly quicker – I’ll try that sometime. There are also more pick up times from Park Gate.
The bus driver on the way up was real friendly and a good laugh – which is always a good start to the day.
The shuttle was only picking up from Londsdale Quay at 9:35am, 12:30pm and 18:15 so options were limited. There are 11 pickup times from Parkgate with the first at 7:35am and the last at 7:30pm. Also more drop offs there.
The shuttle going back to Londsdale left 11:20am, 5:05pm and 8:50pm so again limited options. Going to Parkgate was more often – 11 drop off times with 10:35am the earliest and 10:30pm the latest.
Thankfully on my way back I made the 9:31pm seabus with 3 minutes to spare. Had I missed it I would have had to have waited until 10:01pm!
The trip back across on the seabus is actually well worth doing. Seeing the lit up city through the glass at the front of the seabus oddly reminded me of the closing scene in Fight Club. I half expected to see the buildings come crumbling down and The Pixies’ Where is My Mind to start playing!
But that may have been the sleep deprivation talking!
The convention centre looks great from the water.
Will update when I get up there with the whole mountain open.