Photo: Blake Jorgensen/SilverStar Mountain Resort
Stay at this ski-in, ski-out resort, and you can literally walk outside, strap on your gear and schuss to the bottom of the lift. Plus, there are 20 restaurants right on the mountain, along with a grocery store and local fast-food services that will deliver right to your room. The deep powder is legendary, and you can enjoy it from just about every angle, with 118 trails including the 7.2-kilometre Around the World Route. The mountain has a 777-metre vertical drop, and 16 lifts move 28,000 skiers every hour. Thrill-seekers: try out the snowboard/ski cross course, rails and other wicked features at Telus Park. Prefer cross-country? There are 25 kilometres of trails for you. Kids are covered, too. Tot Town Daycare will look after the littlest of your brood; those old enough to ski can take group lessons by the day or in better-value five-day packages. Learn as a family with a semi-private Mom/Dad & Me Are Skiing! lesson. For parents who want to take advantage of night skiing, the resort’s After-Dark Program offers evening care.
Take Hwy 33 to Big White Rd., Kelowna. 1-800-663-2772 or 250-765-3101; bigwhite.com
Kids love skiing so much they wish they could sleep under the lifts? Well, they can—practically—if you stay at one of Silver Star’s slope-side accommodations. This mountain has a vertical drop of 760 metres and 11 lifts that move 14,000 people every hour. Feel like a challenge? Try the eight-kilometre Eldorado run, or sign up for heli-skiing. Novices, don’t fret: There are 128 trails in all, for every skill level. Night skiing is available Fridays and Saturdays only, from mid-December until the end of March. Grab a bite or a full meal at one of 18 restaurants, cafes and bars on-site. In Daycare Plus, kids 18 months to five years old get a one-hour private lesson (rentals included; kids under three are subject to rental availability and individual assessment) along with full or half-day play and supervision; other combos are available for kids four to 12, including a fun Kids’ Night Out offered three nights a week.
22 km NE of Vernon. 1-800-663-4431; skisilverstar.com
This big and busy two-mountain resort is a fit for families who like bustle and excitement. Named one of National Geographic’s top 25 ski towns, the combined mountains averages around 11.70 metres of snowfall per year. There are more than 200 marked trails, the longest clocking in at 11 kilometres. Thirty-seven lifts move around 70,000 people every hour, and the Peak 2 Peak gondola lets you switch from one mountain to the other in just 11 minutes. There are kid-friendly areas throughout the resort, including Tree Fort on Whistler Mountain and Magic Castle on Blackcomb, where the whole family can take off their skis and play. There’s tubing (kids must be at least 36 inches tall) and a beginner terrain park. Try skating at Whistler Olympic Plaza in the village (although a part of Whistler, it's not actually part of the resort, with $6 skate rentals), and take your turn at the podium where 2010 medal winners accepted their awards. The resort has licensed child care available for kids 18 months to four years; parents are given pagers so they can be contacted quickly. Or access babysitting and Nannies-on-Call services if you prefer. There’s a wide range of children’s lessons and ski/daycare combinations (hot lunch and snacks included). There are 18 restaurants right on the mountains and in the village, with healthy "family certified" meal options, plus lots of comfy beds within walking distance.
4545 Blackcomb Way, Whistler. 1-800-766-0449; whistlerblackcomb.com
This interior-BC resort is considered one of National Geographic’s top 25 ski towns, hailed for its consistent powder, mild temperatures and crowd-free conditions. One-third of the terrain is rated easy, plus there are lots of snow lessons to choose from to advance you and the kids' skills. Daycare is available for kids over 18 months to five years old, with ski-and-play packages daily. Nanny service is available as well, but be sure to book well in advance. There are five eateries on the mountain, a grocery store, and a number of ski-in and ski-out accommodations. Or stay in nearby Fernie, where you’ll find activities like snowshoeing, as well as the chance to see wild elk, deer and rocky mountain bighorn sheep.
Hwy. #3, Fernie. 1-800-258-7669 or 250-423-4655; skifernie.com
This resort was named the Top Family Ski Resort in Canada in 2015 so you know this is one of the best places to go. With over 65 runs spanning over 1800 resort acres, there is so much to do at Kimberley. There are five different lifts—including a magic carpet which should only take around four minutes to ride. Mountain tours, cross country skiing, fat biking and skating assures every family member has something to do. Ski under the stars every Thursday to Saturday night on one of the longest lit runs in North America! The breathtaking experience can be combined with the on-mountain bar and lodging. It's included on every full day lift ticket that's purchased during the night skiing hours or its season pass. Take a break from the slopes and enjoy the Trickle Creek S'mores Snowshoe or Fat Bike Tours. Here, visitors can explore the forest trails of the resort's golf course. These two hour tours include rentals, a hot drink and of course s'mores. (Book in advance for specialty tours). There's so many events every season like Happy Hour or "Kids Eat Free" at Buckhorn and Main Mountain Eatery, snow races and yoga. Childcare is available for half or full-days for kids aged 18 months to five years old, but reservations are recommended as space is limited.
301 N Star Blvd., Kimberley. 1-800-258-7669 or 250-427-4881; skikimberley.com
Lake Louise is worth a visit solely on the basis of being a natural wonder: see for yourself on one of the free guided tours each day. It was voted Canada’s best ski resort in 2017 by the World Ski Awards for a reason because there may be no prettier place to ski and snowboard. You have 145 trails and over 4,200 acres to do just that. (Alas, there’s no night skiing.) The vertical drop is 991 metres. And for beginners, there’s a green run (most resorts indicate degree of difficulty with a colour/shape code, and green is easiest) you can ski or board down from every chairlift—so you won’t be stranded! This also helps families with varying skill levels stick together while still doing the kind of run they like best. And there are various features to try in the Showtime Terrain Park, including many jumps and rails. Even the littlest infants are welcome at the resort’s daycare centre, along with kids up to age six. Opt in for the lunch program if you wish, or add one-hour lessons. Kinderski is a one- or two-hour ski-and-play session for three- and four-year-olds; and full- or half-day lessons at all skill levels are available for kids five to 12. Rentals are extra. There are five casual restaurants on the mountain for breakfast, lunch or snacks (all close by 6 p.m.). The Slopeside Coffee Bar serves Starbucks (squee!). For something fancier, the nearby Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise is a luxurious place to warm up and enjoy the stunning views (kids under five eat free; kids under 12 are half price).
1 Whitehorn Rd., Lake Louise. 1-877-956-8473 or 403-522-3555; skilouise.com
Less than an hour from the city limits, Nakiska is the mountain closest to Calgary. The resort hosted alpine events at the 1988 Winter Olympics. While there are no hotels right on-site, you’ll find accommodations close by in Kananaskis and Canmore. Take your pick of 79 trails—including Monster Glades which runs through the trees on the upper mountain. The vertical drop is 735 metres, with plenty of beginner options. For an extra charge, you can use the rail park, too. Get a bite to eat at the resort’s day lodge. (There’s no night skiing.) Nakiska offers full- or half-day child care for kids 19 months to six years old (lunch is extra) Thursdays through Sundays only but book in advance. Combine care with private Mini Monsters lessons for three- and four-year-olds. Kids 12 and younger can go into half-day group learning camps in the morning or afternoon.
3 Mount Allan Dr., Kananaskis. 1-800-258-7669 or 403-591-7777; skinakiska.com
Looking for something local? Mount Norquay is the closest ski resort to Banff and Canmore and is just an hour away from Calgary. There are a ton of fun activities that the whole family can enjoy, from skiing and snowboarding to tubing. Or slow things down and snowshoe on one of the resort's five trails. Children’s programs for your wee one like Wee Warrior are available to kids three and four years old for a one or two-hour ski lesson. Winter sight-seeing is a must at Mount Norquay—you need to experience the breathtaking views of Banff from 2090 metres up. And after soaking up the beauty of the mountains, grab a bite to eat and warm up at the Cliffhouse Bistro. Night skiing? They have it but, there's probably something even more fun: night tubing. The snow tube park has a new small sliding area and a kids play area. Free ski buses are also available daily to and from Banff.
Mount Norquay Rd., Banff. 403-762-4421; winter.banffnorquay.com
Yes, there is downhill skiing in the Prairies! With its modest 110-metre vertical drop, and nearly half of its 11 trails rated easy, this is a great hill for beginners. If you’re watching your budget, you’ll appreciate that kids under five ski free, and lift tickets are discounted for kids under 16. Bring your own gear, or rent skis, snowboard equipment or snowblades. Night skiing is available on Fridays only. Two quad chairlifts and two magic carpets take you to the top of the slopes. Check out the terrain park, too. And if tubing is your idea of après ski, get this: Tube park tickets are half price when you show your lift ticket. (Kids must be at least 42 inches tall to ride.)
Hwy 16 to Delmas, then travel South for 14.5 km, North Battleford. or Hwy 40, 16 km west of Battleford. 306-937-2920; tablemountainregionalpark.com
There are 15 slopes for skiers and boarders to choose from at Wapiti Valley. The resort aims to make sure that you’ll “come as a visitor, and you’ll leave as a friend.” Their quad chair lift takes you up and down the mountain where you can see views of the Saskatchewan River, including their huge terrain park where freestylers are welcome to show off their skills. Night skiing is also available. Private lessons and half hour lessons are available for kids under five years old for only $25! Don’t worry too much about your child because all instructors are certified by Canadian Instructors Alliance (CSIA) and Canadian Association of Snowboard Instructors (CASI). There’s also Canadian Association Disable Ski (CADS) instructors. Plenty of accommodations are available nearby (aside from the newly built Wapiti Cabin). There’s even something for parents: Grab a drink and relax in the lounge for a nice Après-Ski beverage (there's hot chocolate too).
Hwy 6 N. Nipawin. 306-862-5621; skiwapiti.com
Stay at the Mountain Inn or a cabin, and you’ll be able to ski right to the lift each morning. (Holiday Mountain is the only resort in the province with accommodations on-site.) There’s a mild 91-metre vertical drop, with 11 trails and a terrain park serviced by three lifts, including the Wonder Carpet for beginners, and you can ski at night. Preschoolers’ lift tickets are always free. There’s no daycare; however, certified instructors preside over lessons for all ages and skill levels. With the Holiday Snow baby program, when you buy one lift ticket, both caregivers can take turns hitting the slopes and watching your little one. Bring your own gear or rent it. You can also try Winter zip lining. Then, warm up and have a bite to eat at the Main Chalet on the mountain, or dine in the restaurant at the Inn.
Hwy 3 to #12 Later Way, La Rivère. 204-242-2172; holidaymountain.com
There is so much to do at this resort that the whole family won't get bored. Aside from the classic ski and snowboard, Asessippi offers snow biking, snow shoeing and dog sled rides. Have you heard of snow skates? It’s just like ice skating except you skate ON the snow runs. The tubing park has four to six downhill runs with an almost 200-metre magic carpet that takes you up there. The Trail’s End gift shop is open daily where you can buy a lot of souvenirs and gifts. Feeling hungry after hitting all 26 runs and two terrain parks? The Food Court has visitors covered, with a variety of burgers, poutine, pizza and sandwiches (there are vegetarian options as well). The Powder Key Pub is the perfect place to catch the views in the village. Panoramic windows let people see what’s happening outside. If you’re a season pass holder enjoy Happy Hour drinks on Saturdays from 6 to 8 p.m. Someone in the family a little scared to try skiing or snowboarding? Don’t worry because Snow Sample Sundays run in January where instructors on the Bunny Hill will help get them started. Keep in mind these aren't full lessons, but full snow school lessons are available.
Hwy. 83 and 483, Inglis. 204-564-2000 or 1-888-564-2001; asessippi.com
Whether you’re driving up for the day or plan to stay overnight, there’s a ton to see and do. Aside from skiing and snowboarding (there are 11 lifts to take you to the 43 trails and two terrain parks), you and the fam can ride the Ridge Runner Mountain Coaster, skate, snowshoe, or splash in the indoor water park—kids will love the rope swings. There are too many shopping and dining options in the village to list, along with a wide choice of accommodations. Each morning, you can grab breakfast, then pick up rentals in one of the three base lodges, open from 8 a.m., throughout the day and into the evening; there’s extensive night and dine skiing, too. With a modest 219 metres of vertical, the hill isn’t tall, but it is very busy, so novices will be happy to know there are beginner areas to take refuge in. Kids are well taken care of, too: book half- or full-day ski lessons for kids three and up, with or without daycare. You can also choose 45-minute private lessons for kids ages two to five. Not ready to ski? The daycare takes kids 18 months to six years old. If you stay overnight, you can book a private sitter (trained in CPR and first aid) who’ll come to where you’re staying.
108 Jozo Weider Blvd., Blue Mountains. 1-877-445-0231; bluemountain.ca
Horseshoe is set up so families can play together—or apart. There’s childcare for kids three to 14 (reserve before you arrive), and tons of lessons for everyone. Discover Ski and Snowboard packages offer group lessons for kids ages six up to adult, with rentals and a beginner lift ticket. For little ones (ages two to five), check out Kinder Private lessons (parents can come along) or have the whole family learn together in a two-hour semi-private session. The hill has a 94-metre vertical drop, with 28 trails, about a quarter of which are rated beginner; more than half are lit for night skiing. Six lifts get you to the top quickly—well, except for the "magic carpet," a conveyor belt that meanders gently up the bunny hill (and is almost as much fun for kids as going down)—and also access the 20-feature terrain park. For a more chilled out approach to travelling downhill, snowboarding lessons and equipment are also available. If you're curious about the difference between skiing and 'boarding, instructors say that while it's way faster to learn downhill, it's way tougher to master it compared to snowboarding, which takes some time but is easy once you get the hang (ten!) of it. For a slower pace on flat terrain, zip across the road for cross-country lessons (in classic and skate-ski), fat bike or moonlight snowshoeing Saturday nights. For all of the rush without the exertion, flop into a snow tube and ride the steep snow chute down (TIP: Helmets aren't mandatory here, but if you prefer your kid to wear one, you'll need to grab it ahead of time at Guest Services, located at the bottom of the downhill ski hill). If someone in your clan hasn’t been able to ski conventionally, and you live in the area, sign up early for a spot in the affordable eight-week Canadian Adaptive Snowsports program for physically or intellectually challenged skiers, which includes a lift ticket and rentals. Check out regular deals on accommodation and lift ticket packages. Attention parents: While your kids are occupied with their lessons, rehab your sore muscles and clear your mind at the sweet-smelling onsite Shizen Spa.
1101 Horseshoe Valley Rd., Barrie. 1-800-461-5627; horseshoeresort.com
Ski Canada magazine has called Snow Valley the “Best Ontario Hill for Kids,” which is great for parents, too. First Tracks offers care for kids six months to five years; reservations recommended. Check out Ski ’n Play packages that give kids three to five a combo of indoor play and ski lessons in the resort’s Kidz Village. Of course, there are lessons for every other age range and skill level, as well. The hill has a 91-metre vertical drop, with 21 trails and eight lifts. All the equipment you need is available to rent, including well-priced Family Rental Packs. You can ski under the stars every night except Monday. There’s also a tube park and snowshoe rentals are available too. Overnight accommodations are nearby; many offer “stay and play” packages.
2632 Vespra Valley Rd., Minesing. 705-721-7669; skisnowvalley.com
This family-friendly destination offers lessons for kids on weekends and holidays. For kids three to five, choose a one-and-a-half- or three-hour session, with or without gear rental; lunch service is available. There’s also weekend and holiday daycare service for kids ages three to five; opt in to the lunch plan at additional cost, or pack one. Seven- to 14-year-olds can learn in two- or four-hour camps. More than one-third of the resort’s 36 slopes are designed for beginners, and the vertical drop is a non-scary 168 metres. The hill is serviced by nine lifts, including three magic carpets for beginners. There’s even a beginner Junkyard area built into the two terrain parks. If you’re staying overnight, there are accommodations nearby in Barrie and Orillia.
24 Mount St. Louis Rd., RR #4, Coldwater. 1-877-835-2112; mountstlouis.com
Previously called Mont Saint-Sauveur, this resort in Quebec’s Laurentian mountains has the milder vertical drop (213 metres) associated with this older and less jagged mountain range. It claims the largest night skiing area in the world, offering discounted Saturday-evening lift tickets from late-January to mid-February. It’s a smaller resort, with 40 trails (about one-quarter of them rated easy) and a terrain park serviced by eight lifts. Catering to families, there’s a children’s playground as well as lessons for the whole family (reservations recommended). Take off your skis and try the two mountain coasters. The Viking is open to kids three and older, when accompanied by an adult; for Le Dragon, you must be at least 42 inches tall. Dine at the casual T-Bar 70 restaurant at the base of the mountain, or head to the village of Saint-Sauveur for sweet or savoury crepes at Crêperie La Gourmandise, or have sandwiches at Gusto Café in Piedmont. If you’re staying overnight, check out the log cabins at Morin Heights (around $144 per night; campingmorinheights.com). There are also many other accommodations in the village of Saint-Sauveur.
350 Rue St. Denis, Saint Sauveur. 450-227-4671; sommets.com
This is a destination for people who like the bustle and variety of a larger resort. There are eight restaurants right on the mountain, and your pick of motels, hotels and chalets at the base. The mountain has an impressive 625-metre vertical drop, with 71 trails (19 are lit for night skiing), plus a terrain park with three zones and a ski-snowboard cross course. And if your wee one is too small to ski, there’s a daycare centre offering play and supervision for kids six months and up, for a full or half day (lunch extra). Preschoolers up to age six can participate in Star Camp, which combines a full or half day of care with ski lessons (call ahead for availability). Older kids age seven to 14 can take ski lessons through the Kidz’ Clinic, with small groups of three to six per instructor, in skill-appropriate groups. Or take a two-hour lesson together as a family—you’ll get priority in the lift line. Private lessons are available for all ages and skill levels. Prefer to cross-country ski? You’re covered. For snowshoers, there’s a trail network with three heated cabins to warm up in. For a little "R and R," choose from a number of ski and spa packages.
2000 Blvd. du Beau-pré, Beaupré. 1-888-827-4579; mont-sainte-anne.com
Here’s another one of National Geographic’s top 25 ski towns. It sits at 875 metres, with 96 trails, and lifts that move more than 27,000 people per hour. But it’s also supremely family friendly. The Kidz Club Daycare welcomes one- to six-year-olds for half- or full days (with or without lunch; reservations recommended). The Mother Nature Camp for three- and four-year-olds is a fun, half-day learn-to-ski program; the remainder of the day is spent in daycare. If you don’t need daycare, there are also group ski lessons for kids three to 12, and snowboard lessons for kids seven to 12. There are tons of accommodations and restaurant choices right at the resort. Off the slopes, you can enjoy skating, tubing and dogsledding.
1000 Chemin des Voyageurs, Mont-Tremblant. 866-356-2233 or 1-888-738-1777; tremblant.ca
In operation since 1969, this smaller, family-oriented hill offers basic fun, with 83 metres of vertical hills, 22 runs and a terrain park serviced by four lifts. Night skiing is available; there’s a tube park, too. You can rent day lockers to keep your stuff safe, and there are equipment rentals for the whole family. There’s no daycare, but a fully staffed snow school offers instruction at every age and skill level. In addition, there’s a skiing program for kids with disabilities. Accommodations are nearby in Edmunston. Their cafeteria offers a varied menu to suit the pickiest eater, but there’s also the Avalanche Pub if you’d prefer to munch on finger foods.
360, Mont Farlagne Rd., Edmundston. 506-739-7669; montfarlagne.com
This mountain has 35 trails and the largest vertical drop in the Maritimes at 260 metres. Not to mention, it has some of the best terrains in Atlantic Canada. There’s something for everyone to do at Crabbe Mountain, especially their seasonal programs appropriately named after cute winter animals. Kids from age four to five can be Snow Owls or Polar Cubs where they can learn how to ski or improve their skills—but, no lunch is provided. Kids a little older (until 15) are split into groups based on their skill level. If you’re an adrenaline junkie or competitive, the new Molson/Coors Thursday night racing is just for you. Meet new people and socialize while racing against other teams. There's prizes for everyone! If you live in the area, the Fox SNO Bus is available for transportation to and from the mountain which is super convenient. Keep in mind that childcare is no longer available at Crabbe Mountain.
50 Crabbe Mountain Rd., Central Hainesville. 506-463-8311; crabbemountain.com
The mountain has 33 trails and almost half of them are rated easy. There’s plenty of accommodations surrounding the mountain in Sussex if you decide to ski and stay. Even the youngest one in your family can stay in childcare (it's available for kids from three months to 10 years old). The centre closes during lunch so make sure to not make any lunch plans. Rental gear is available for parents and children. If you’re hungry, grab some food at the Slope Bar & Grill, the new Mountain Café and there’s a self-serve Grab n’ Go option to get you back out on the slopes right away. On the weekends Kids Portioned Combos are available for around $5 with a variety of options your child will love. If you want to take a break from the slopes, there’s live music and a winter carnival for even more fun.
69 Poley Mountain Rd., Waterford. Follow the “little blue skier” signs on the highway. 506-433-7653 or 800-305-8585; poleymountain.com
This place has kids (and, hence, their parents) covered. For the tots, there are babysitting and daycare services (kids must be toilet trained for the latter; add in a one-hour ski lesson to full-day care if you wish. Lunch is provided). As well, Kid’s drop-in lesson packages are available, including a one-hour group lesson and lift ticket (valid during lesson only) and rentals are available to rent for $15. The mountain has 39 runs from beginner, advanced and expert trails, with a peak elevation at 546 metres. The beginner slope has an easy-to-navigate magic carpet from bottom to top. Night owls can enjoy skiing from 5:30 to 10 p.m. (tentative on the season) Fridays only. Ask anyone who works there, and they'll say they're famous for their short lift lines and amazing views that look over the Humber Valley. Plus, it's only 40 minutes away from Deer Lake International Airport. Get fuelled for the day with breakfast or lunch at The Cookhouse, or grab a snack and listen to live music at The Knotty Pine Lounge.
Exit #8, Trans Canada Hwy, Corner Brook. 1-888-462-7253 or 709-637-7601; skimarble.com
Families will definitely enjoy staying at Smokey Mountain. Every year there’s fun activities for the whole family planned. The Hot Dogs and Hand Rails event takes place at the mountain’s snowboard park. Participants of all ages can show off their skills like jumps, twists and turns for their chance to win cool prizes. Rental packages are available starting at $26.50 that includes skis, poles or snowboard, boots and helmet. There’s over 80 acres of skiable terrain that’s accessible by a double chair lift and two poma chairs that transport over 2,000 people per hour. Plus, ski conditions are 100 per cent natural snow (doesn't get any better than that!)
Smokey Mountain Rd., Labrador City. 709-944-2129; skismokey.ca
This resort is usually only opened Friday to Sunday, but that just means more fun on the weekends. Check their website to see when they’ll be open during the week. There’s a vertical drop of 227 metres with an average snowfall of around 3.6 metres. Night skiing is available on Friday nights. Half-day and full-day lift tickets are also available, but for children younger than five it’s free. If you’re a family of three or four, bundle lift tickets are available at either half-day or full day. There are a ton of accommodations really close to the mountains so skiing and staying is definitely worth it. There are a few options for private and semi-private lessons (two to three people) but it must be booked in advance. The magic carpet is only accessible for the Bunny Slope, but don’t worry because the lift accommodates around 2700 people per hour. Around 50 to 60 per cent of slopes are groomed so this resort really lives up to its name.
100 White Hills Rd., Clarenville. 1-877-466-4559 or 709-466-4555; whitehillsresort.com
At this official site of the 2007 Canada Winter Games, kids can get their start on the bunny hill. There are 10 trails, plus two terrain parks, ranging from easy to more challenging, and a 318-metre vertical drop. And there are ski and snowboard packages, including rentals and lift tickets, led by certified instructors. Not sliding but want to supervise your child’s lesson? You get a free lift ticket. Pokey Park is perfect for beginners to try the small features like boxes, metal tanks and small rollers. The whole crew can warm up and have a meal or a snack at the cafeteria or the on-hill Last Run Lounge. Stay overnight in one of the hotels or bed-and-breakfasts in nearby Whitehorse.
770 Mt. Sima Rd., Whitehorse. 867-667-7547; mountsima.com
“Mom, I want to try snowboarding.” While most resorts offer ski equipment and lessons for preschoolers on up, the minimum age for snowboarding varies from place to place; many start at age seven or eight because kids tend not to be coordinated enough to handle snowboarding earlier. Call ahead to ensure your little shredder won’t be disappointed.
Got a tween? Get a Snow Pass. Nine- and 10-year-olds can ski and snowboard free at over 150 ski areas in most provinces and the Yukon. Here’s the deal: Sign your child up at participating Sport Chek locations or at snowpass.ca; you’ll get a card that gets him free lift passes up to three times at each of the participating resorts across Canada.
Helmet check You wear a helmet when you ride a bike, so why wouldn’t you wear one while you’re zipping down the slopes and a crash is much more likely? The Canadian Ski Council recommends that everyone wear a helmet to help prevent head injuries, and most terrain parks require them. Rentals are available, but if you ski or ride regularly, get your own to ensure it fits correctly.