Silver Star Mountain Resort, Vernon, Photo Destination BC Blake Jorgensen
Silver Star Mountain Resort in the Okanagan Valley is an award winning year-round resort having been voted the Best Ski Resort and the Best Family Resort in the Okanagan region for several years. Located near Vernon it has the third largest ski area in the province and is a favourite with skiers, mountain bikers, hikers and practically anyone who enjoys the outdoors amid stunning scenery. In the summer, the hillsides spring to life with a brilliant array of wildflowers and the trails offer opportunities for all activity levels. The colourful Victorian-inspired village is nestled on the side of Silver Star Mountain and offers an eclectic mix of cafes, shops and more.
Silver Star Mountain Resort is located in the Thompson Okanagan region of British Columbia 22 km (14 mi) northeast of Vernon via Hwy 97 and east on Silver Star Road.
Vernon resident Bert Thorburn became the first person to ski in the Silver Star area in 1930. He rode his bike up to the end of a logging road in the area and then walked a distance following forestry trails to a forest fire lookout. He camped there for the night and skied down the next day. In 1946 the first rope tow was built on Burney Ridge. It was powered by an old four-cylinder engine. The cooling system was a 40 gallon water drum hooked up to the radiator. For 50 cents, you could ski all day. In 1958 the final three kilometers of the Silver Star road was pushed through to the current day village area. Construction of two rope-tow lifts and an A-frame day lodge were also built in 1958. In 1959 a poma lift was installed from the 5,000-foot (1,500 m) level at the parking lot to the top of Silver Star Mountain and in 1964 new t-bars were installed to replace the slower rope. The Summit and Yellow Chairs (6,000 feet) were installed In 1967 and 1968, making Silver Star Mountain one of the largest ski areas in Canada.
The first Nordic trails were cleared in 1981 and in 1983 the Putnam Station Hotel was built and became Silver Star’s first on-hill hotel. Throughout the rest of the 1980s new hotels and amenities were built on the hill and in 1990 the Silver Queen chair was built to serve as the bunny hill. Significant growth has taken place since that time and today there are 132 ski runs on some 3,200 acres offering skiing opportunities from the beginner to the extreme.
Silver Star Mountain