Just northwest of Pemberton about 2.5 hours from Vancouver is one of British Columbia's most beautiful and grandiose mountain parks. The Joffre Lake Provincial Park is a stunning area whether you visit it during the summer or winter.
The main trail from the parking area leads to three beautiful turquoise lakes fed by the Matier Glacier and the snows from the surrounding peaks. Some of these peaks reach 2,600 meters and offer many ski zones and varying types of terrain. West from the lakes, the climb on skis can be a bit tough going up through the steep woods until plateaus bring you to the first really great ski area.
A climb here brings you to the summit of a 2,200-meter ridge, which earns you 700 to 800 meters of 35- to 40-degree vertical back down to the skin track. From there, break trail up the ridge and through the trees to the next plateau, where you can choose to ski back down the way you came or up over the ridge to another zone. A short boot pack to the ridge leads to steep terrain with some gnarly entrances and chutes.
Dropping over the ridge gives you another 600 to 700 vertical meters of open powder fields before getting into the trees and another 500 down through the trees to the highway.
Keith’s Hut sits on the other side of Joffre and offers mountain accommodations for 14 people.
A truly great area for big mountain skiing, Joffre Lake Provincial Park is a must for any Coast Mountain skier's bucket list.
Winter backcountry adventures can be dangerous outdoor activities that pose significant risks as conditions affecting safety (i.e. weather, snowpack stability, avalanche hazard) are constantly changing. Prior to engaging in these activities each individual should get the proper training to make safe decisions and be equipped to use avalanche safety resources and tools. Please visit our Backcountry Skiing and Avalanche Safety post to learn more.