Posted on 28 April 2012
Ski resorts across Canadian Rockies have enjoyed record snowfall this season, and Sunshine Village near Banff recently announced it had broken its all-time record of for snowfall with more than 1,000 cm of snow, and the resort isn’t due to close until towards the middle of May so this figure could get even higher. Banff National Park resort is due to stay open until May 6th, as it has extended the season. The picturesque resort of Lake Louise is just 3 cm short of breaking a snowfall record set in 1972.
Ferrnie, in British Columbia also did well, as winter storms brought 1,145 cm of the white stuff, which at times was record-breaking. Locals have reported it as being one of the best ski seasons they have ever seen. During just one January storm, Fernie received 96 cm of snow in less than two days, making it the single biggest snowstorm at a Canadian resort this season. However this amount of snow doesn’t come without risks, as the Canadian Avalanche Centre was forced to issue four avalanche warnings during five weeks, whereas it would normally issue that number during the course of the entire winter. Most of this risk was in the backcountry regions rather than in the well-known resorts.
One of the most expensive resorts in Canada is Whistler, but Passive House which is designed as affordable housing for families living in Whistler shows this doesn’t have to be the case. The house is designed to use up to 90% less energy for heating and cooling, and incorporates a subsoil heat exchanger, solar hot water, and a number of sustainable building features. Passive House design first originated in Germany in the late 1980s, and construction is very quick; the house in Whistler took just four and a half days to put up, and is mostly built out of local, sustainable materials.