Best jobs for canada snow season?

Hi, so i am looking into moving to Canada for the 17/18 snow season, and i am just wondering what are generally the best jobs to maximise riding time? Also interested in what resorts or ski areas everyone recommends.


Welcome to Boardworld, @matt-000!

I live in Whistler so I’ll definitely throw that one up for consideration. It’s the biggest resort in North America and epic in size and scale. Each resort has its pros and cons but in regards to size and options, it’s a hard one to beat.

Other resorts worth considering:

Big White
Sun Peaks
Banff (Lake Louise, Sunshine, Norquay)
Kicking Horse
... and others.

In regards to jobs, you’ll probably get a lot of different answers. It really depends on the lifestyle you want to live, how much sleep you’re willing to sacrifice, how much you’re happy to earn etc. I might be biased but I’ve always felt snowboard instructing is right up there; you spent endless days on snow, you get access to the best training, and pay-wise it’s about as good as it gets. That said, it’s not the easiest job to get into and it takes some planning and you need to take courses.

If you dedicate yourself to riding, you’ll get solid riding time regardless. A lot of guys I know like to work evenings/nights, as that frees up the days for shredding (but refer back to the lack of sleep point). wink

I hope that helps.


Here at Fernie you get to ride to work as a lifty and generally get 1 or 2 ride laps while working (more common during quieter periods and pretty unheard of over xmas or december) and an hour lunch break. You also only work 4 long days a week so you end up with about $350 a week in the bank and good amounts of time to ride.

Janitors get a good gig though, they work 4 days on, 4 days off, 4 nights on, 4 days off in that rotation. So technically you could be riding for 12 days straight at a time. However the pay is the same $11 an hour as a lifty and you’ll probably only get $250-300 a week in pay.

I haven’t worked in Whistler so I can’t comment on that but other mountains I have worked or talked to people about are:

1. Sun Peaks - 5 on / 2 off, 8 hour days and 40 hours a week. More ride breaks unless you get stuck somewhere shitty like the burf chair or magic carpets.
2. Sunshine Village (Banff) - 5 on / 2 off, you only work 3 quarters of the day but have to be there for morning and afternoon meetings. You work the same chair / carpet for the whole season so the lifties looked pretty bored to me…
3. Revelstoke - 4 on / 3 off, You will get stuck loading and unloading gondolas which will keep you busy and the lifties also do ticket checking.
4. Kicking Horse - Same as Revelstoke
5. Red Mountain - Similar to Fernie from my knowledge. Pay is better because the mountain is owned by the people and workers are part of a union.

Hope that helped a bit as a lifty’s perspective. Some of the boys here got 130 days with a snowboard on their feet if that’s your kind of job.


Hey man,

I’ve just finished up my second year in Whis, and I can definitely say that every job has it’s perks, and in a snow season, perks go a long way!

In regards to maximizing ride time, obviously you’re going to be wanting a night job. There’s a whole heap of options depending on your previous employment experience.

Working for WB you can potentially do snowmaking, night chefing in the Roundhouse, night cleaning. Perks include potential staff housing, free ski pass.

Working food/bev/bar gigs around town will also mean that you’ll be working in the evenings. These positions include hosting, bussing/dishwashing, chefing etc. Perks at a lot of these kinds of places include free food… which is like gold around here.

Also don’t pass up things like pizza delivery, pizza shop, burger shop gigs. Moguls and the grocery store are open for late shifts as well.

Then theres also snow clearing, which are super super early shifts which usually wrap up around late morning, leaving the rest of the day open for shredding. (pretty sure it pays decent too)

Hopefully that will spin you some ideas that will help with whatever resort you choose.

matt-000 - 30 March 2017 11:33 PM

Hi, so i am looking into moving to Canada for the 17/18 snow season, and i am just wondering what are generally the best jobs to maximise riding time? Also interested in what resorts or ski areas everyone recommends.

I’m going to second night jobs.

The first season I did in Whistler I worked for the mountain in guest services (majority morning/day job) as well as a night job at a restaurant. I only managed something like 68 days or so.

The second season, I only worked nights at a restaurant and managed to clock 125 days (including tearing my mcl and being out of action for 4 weeks or so as well as leaving at the end of april).

Server/Bartender jobs pay the best at nights but don’t discount hotel gigs as well such as Houseman/Night Audit etc.

Basically as long as your start time is around 2 or 3pm you are sweet.


I’ve spent the season here in Banff, supervising a rentals/repair shop which is a 4 on 3 off schedule that’s let me get in around 80 full days riding here. I’m pretty happy with that as I really enjoy the job, the pay’s decent, and perks are really good. I’ve managed to actually save a decent chunk of money which is almost unheard of in Banff haha, enough that I’m going to come back again in November for another winter and I’ll be making my case for different days off next season so I can sneak in Fri/Sat Night riding as well.

I’ll third the night jobs if you want to maximise riding time. Our shop’s based out of the Fairmont Banff Springs, I know plenty of servers or even Guest Services/Bellmen that are are well past the 100 day mark, some probably closer to 150. If you’re willing to sacrifice sleep there’s overnight shifts for cleaners and in-room dining as well, and they get paid a little more for those shifts as well. Work Midnight - 8am, be on the first shuttle up to the mountains, exhaust yourself riding, come home and crash then do it all again hah.


Hi Matt, can really advice you a good company that are movers Houston (if haven’t already found one) it is called three men and a truck. Very good people working there, Friendly and hardworking ones. What about some jobs…I think rider26 is wright. You can work as a snowboard/ski instructor so you can spend much time on a fresh air. riding on the snow, I think that’s nice. And also the best ski ares are, in my opinion of course Revelstoke, Big White, Sun Peaks, Fernie. Have a nice time there!