Nakiska

It’s where friends meet!

About Nakiska

Only 83 km from Calgary, Nakiska is the closest mountain resort to Calgary, offering more than 2,400 vertical feet of skiing and boarding less than an hour from the city. In fact, the ride is a short 49 minutes, so just head west on Highway 1 then south on Highway 40 and you’ll be here before you know it!

Located in the heart of spectacular Kananaskis Valley, Nakiska was specifically designed to host the alpine events of the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics. Thanks to the legacy of the Olympics, visitors to Nakiska – and its Ski Patrol – enjoy one of the finest and most modern facilities in Western Canada.

Although designed with ski racing in mind, Nakiska’s ski terrain was carefully planned to meet the needs of family visitors. In fact, 70 per cent of Nakiska’s terrain is rated as intermediate, with 16 per cent classified as novice. The remaining 14 per cent is expert. The overall design of the mountain is simple and very user-friendly, with expert terrain primarily at the top, intermediate runs mid-mountain, and lower areas designed for beginners.

Nakiska provides skiers and boarders with everything they need for a terrific day on the slopes. The mountain offers 28 different runs and virtually non-existent lift line-ups. Nakiska features six modern lifts including two high-speed quad chairs, and the new Gold Express quad chair, a double chair and two surface lifts.  The patrol and its dispatcher operate from a modern base hut, just minutes from the Kananaskis EMS station.

To fully ensure a successful Olympic Games and reliable snow conditions for years to come, Nakiska was equipped with one of the most extensive and sophisticated snow making systems in North America. The end result is that skiers and snowboarders alike can depend on consistent high quality snow coverage from mountaintop to valley floor.

A combination of unparalleled snowmaking scope and a commitment to world class grooming makes Nakiska the destination of choice for those that enjoy long cruising runs or are looking for some serious carving. The daily snow report consistently talks about acres of “picture-perfect” corduroy complemented by powder runs and glade skiing off the Gold Chair. This is no idle boast, as those that are in the know will tell you that Nakiska is not only the closest mountain skiing to Calgary, but the destination of choice when it comes to groomed cruising and carving. Some say “Life begins at Highway 40.”

Area Accommodations

Kananaskis Village is just three minutes away. There you can find several restaurants, hotels –with pools and hot tubs– lounges and a convenience store.

The Ribbon Creek Hostel is very close to the Village. It has great amenities, including a fireplace, and is priced lower than room rates in the Village facilities.

Patroller Requirements

The Nakiska CSPS Patrol accepts alpine, snowboard and telemark patrollers. Patrollers must commit to a minimum of three weekend (or locally observed holiday) days per month. We seek strong intermediate to expert level skiers and boarders.  All patrollers must successfully pass their yearly First Aid and CPR recertification as well as participate in the Returning Patroller Weekend at Nakiska.  We have a small selection of patrol jackets and packs for new patrollers to borrow for the day until they can purchase their own.

New Patroller On-Hill Training

All patrollers must successfully pass an On-Snow Skiing/Boarding Evaluation before the commencement of any On-Hill Training.

New Patroller training at Nakiska is done over a period of five weekend days. Patrollers will be teamed with a senior patroller for each training day, with the fifth day being a final checkout.

New patroller training concentrates on getting to know the slopes and the resort facilities along with the professional-style protocols and methods that distinguish the Nakiska patrol. The Calgary Zone in-town first aid course provides you with an excellent foundation to build upon. And build we do. During your Nakiska training days there will be additional training given in radio protocols, accident colour coding, back-boarding in difficult terrain, patrol hut procedures and toboggan-handling skills. At Nakiska, training and improvement is on-going throughout the season for rookies and veterans alike.

Nakiska Volunteer Patrol Benefits

Once you have successfully completed your Nakiska On-Hill Training and On-Snow Skiing/Boarding Evaluations, you will begin receiving your volunteer benefits.

Benefits package include:

  • Credit system for a Day Ticket for friends/family for days patrolled
  • Staff discounts on food, services and merchandise

For more information contact Patrol Leader James Papineau at [email protected]