It’s a long way to the top … if you want to ski or snowboard.
Well, that’s if this video posted to Reddit of a huge lineup of cars waiting to get up to North Shore’s Cypress Mountain Resort on Dec. 22. is anything to go by.
The video, posted by Redditor couchtomato1986, shows footage of traffic piling up on Cypress Bowl Road almost all the way down to the lower lookout.
With holidays in full swing and another sell-out day, things weren’t looking very different for Cypress on Dec. 23, either. By 9:45 a.m. Cypress Provincial Park Operator staff were tweeting that parking lots were full and they were turning cars around. Limited parking spaces eventually became available after 11:30 a.m. It was also a jam-packed day at Seymour, with the Mt. Seymour Park Operator tweeting that there was only limited parking available by 11 a.m.
The video was posted just a day after Environment Minister George Heyman sent a message to outdoor enthusiasts to be patient and prepared when heading to the local mountains.
“When the parking lot’s full, you won't be able to get in,” he said. “We're encouraging people to understand that these parking lots on these mountains are going to fill up quickly. So, if you want to get up here, plan your day, get up early, but most importantly, ensure that you pack your patience,” he said.
The traffic video caused a bit of a grumble among local skiers and boarders on Reddit, with some saying the North Shore mountains weren’t “worth it anymore” if they had to deal with that traffic.
Redditor w_l_p wrote that they were in the lineup but eventually just gave up getting to the top of the mountain.
“I thought there was an accident that closed the road, so I kept crawling up the hill,” they wrote.
“After an hour, I finally bailed when I started smelling burning clutch.”
Another Redditor wrote that it just wasn't like the good ol' days anymore.
“I used to love it when I was younger... but the amount of crowds and cost are absurd,” wrote Redditor flatspotting.
“I just can’t find it worth it anymore to spend $100 a person to be stuck in this [traffic].”
Redditor Reality_check89 added, “how is this even fun anymore with this many people?”
According to Redditor rayyychul, it isn't easy to get a decent night ski in these days either.
“My fiancé did night skiing twice (around 5 on a Friday two weeks ago and the same time last Thursday), and it was absolutely nuts. He managed to do about four runs in four to five hours,” she wrote.
For some, the answer was to get a little merry over the holidays instead of ski.
“Uggh! I love skiing but would rather drink than spend all day waiting in line just to ski for an hour or two,” wrote Redditor Ayellowbeard.
In order to get a lift ticket for the day, visitors to Seymour, Grouse and Cypress resorts must book online in advance. Cypress passholders do not require pre-booking, hence the huge lineups during the week. Seymour passholders must reserve their visits over the holidays. All visitors to Grouse must reserve their Skyride boarding time. Skyride reservations for today are sold out.
Parking for those who aren’t coming to the downhill areas will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Visitors are also asked to follow all coronavirus safety protocols.
Elisia Seeber is the North Shore News’ Indigenous and civic affairs reporter. This reporting beat is made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.