Though winter hasn’t officially begun, I’ve been feeling major wintery vibes since I landed during a snowstorm in Quebec last week.
My winter season started extra early last month in BC when I took my board and skis to two local mountains on their respective opening day. Since moving to BC, one of my winter goals has been to ride more and get better at snowboarding, especially in powder. Growing up out east, I never got to ski or ride in powder so this has become an important objective of mine.
Having access to world-class skiing and snowboarding resorts and conditions just make me that much more excited about getting out there and doing it as much as possible for the next couple of months. I’m also hoping to do my first ever AVI course later this winter so that I can have the most knowledge and be the safest when riding on this new terrain.
Skiing and riding in BC has lots of advantages compared to the east. Not only is the terrain a lot bigger, the fresh powder is unreal and the weather is always a little warmer. That said, having the right gear for playing in the snow is so key! With the help of Sport Chek, I was able to pick a bunch of accessories that will make my skiing and riding season that much more enjoyable. From a warm Helly Hansen base layer, to new Burton gloves and Spy Optics goggles, they have all of the winter essentials you may need.
Leaving Quebec tomorrow and headed to Europe and the Alps for some epic riding. Can’t wait to bring these accessories along with me for the ride!
This post was written in collaboration with Sport Chek, but all opinions are my own.
1) Go on a Food and Drink excursion in Kelowna. The region of Kelowna is well-known in the summer for its amazing wineries, but winter is as good of a time as any to visit the Okanagan Valley. Most of the wineries and wine trails are open all-year-round plus there are now tons of awesome local breweries popping up all over town, making it a great destination for wine and beer enthusiasts. Farm to Table is also a huge trend in Kelowna and the valley. Local farmers and chefs take pride in serving locally grown food from the neighbourhood farms. While you’re in the area, you can even take a self-guided farm tour to visit the local food growers and learn more about what the area can produce.
2) Go surfing in Tofino – Winter or the shoulder season are truly the best times to visit Tofino. Yes, the water will be cold but you get to avoid all the crowds and madness that you get during the summer. There are lots of great surf shops open all-year-round (Long Beach Surf Shop, Surf Sister, Pacific Surf School, etc.) and tons of spots to get surf lessons from if you’re new to the sport. Plus, the après-surf is that much more enjoyable when you’re sitting fireside with a warm beverage either at a nice Airbnb, an oceanfront cabin (check out Ocean Village Resort!) or even in your van. Van life is very much alive and well all-throughout the year in Tofino!
3) Go Hiking in Nelson – The Nelson Kootenay region offers a handful of amazing hiking options for those looking to spend some time outdoors this winter. Whether you’re looking for a quick jaunt like the 1.6k Pulpit Rock or something more grandiose like the spectacular Kokanee Glacier Provincial Park, Nelson has all sorts of hikes that can be explored throughout the winter season with either regular hiking boots, crampons or even snowshoes.
4) Visit Halcyon Hot Springs – Open 365 days a year, these beautiful hot springs are located right on the waterfront of Upper Arrow Lake. While relaxing in the restorative and healing waters, you get to enjoy the beautiful views of the Monashee Mountains. The hot springs are just over an hour away from Revelstoke, making it the perfect après-ski relaxation spot. You can spend the entire weekend at the Halcyon Hot Springs exploring the area and renting out one of the chalets or cabins on property.
5) Go explore the backcountry in Whistler. Chances are, if you’ve visited BC in the winter time or your reside here, you’ve probably already gone skiing or riding up in Whistler. But have you explore the amazing backcountry before? There are lots of great local touring companies (Extremely Canadian, Altus Mountain Guides) that offer AST courses, clinics and tours for mountain enthusiasts of all levels. You can also purchase some backcountry tickets for Whistler Blackcomb, that are more than half the price of the regular lift tickets.
Winter is just around the corner so I’m making all the necessary adjustments to my home and closet to make sure that I’m ready for what’s bound to begin any moment now.
Last year, I decided to adopt a more positive attitude towards winter. Though I still dislike it very much, I’m trying to embrace the snow and the colder temperatures a lot more. The best way I’ve found to do so is by being outdoors and having fun in the elements.
The one thing that is an absolute must in order to fully enjoy the outdoors, is a good pair of boots. Because I’m always freezing, the warmer they are the better and they’ve got to be waterproof. So this winter, I’ll be giving the KEEN “Elsa” boot a try.
I took my “Elsa” boots with me to Whistler two weeks ago because I knew there was a good chance that there would be snow on the ground or that we’d get hit with a snowstorm while we were there. And just as I had predicted, the day we went ziplining on the mountain in Whistler Blackcomb, the station received their first real snowstorm of the season. I was beyond stoked to have those boots on my feet for my outdoor adventures.
They kept my feet nice and toasty during the three hours we were out and about going across from one peak of the mountain to another. More importantly, they also kept my feet dry! The Elsa boots are super lightweight and not as clunky as other boots I’ve worn before. And added bonus, the boots look super cute, so I was really happy to have them in-tow.
I’m now definitely more #KEENForWinter! Check my Instagram today @melsays for your chance to win a pair of KEEN boots!
Today would have been the perfect day to wear Sorel boots in Toronto! Mother Nature is at it again and giving us one hell of a winter! This is hands down the coldest and snowiest winter I’ve ever seen since I moved to Toronto 4 1/2 years ago!
Keeping warm this evening! I love a good glass of wine & candles to relax after work!
I’m trying to embrace sweaters a lot more this season. It’s getting really cold out so I’m trying to dress as warm as possible while trying to remain stylish (if I can!). Layering is definitely a good way to stay warm so today I tried to layer my sweater with a plaid buttoned up shirt. I actually did an interview for my show this morning with The Strumbellas, an amazing folk-pop band from Toronto (see video below!) and the band’s singer was also sporting layered sweaters and plaid. Thought it was pretty neat!