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Banff Mount Norquay

Banff Mount Norquay Ski Resort Guide

Banff Mount Norquay, Canada

Rated: 4/5 (from 6 ratings)

Ski Area Highlights
Recommended ForExpert Skiers, Intermediates, Beginners, Snowboarders, Snowfall and Apres-Ski!
Highest Lift2,135m
Resort Height1,739m
 Nearest AirportCalgary International
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Banff Mount Norquay

The original of the three Banff Ski areas, smallest and still the closest, with great skiing including several top to bottom blacks.


The Canadian ski resort of Banff Mount Norquay is in the Canadian Rockies at an altitude of 1,739m.

Banff Mount Norquay has direct access to 24 marked pistes, served by a total of 6 ski lifts.

The ski resort itself is at 1,739m, so skiing or boarding back to the resort is usually possible. With ski lifts as high as 2,135m, snow cover is generally reliable.

Snow and Weather

When will it snow in Banff Mount Norquay?

The next notable snow forecast is 3cm, expected on 28 September.

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Snow this week

Snow Forecast by day for Banff Mount Norquay

Ski Area Stats

Banff Mount Norquay Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts


Banff Mount Norquay Ski Area Heights

Lift Heights and Resort Altitude
Highest Lift2,135m
Lowest Piste1,739m
Resort Altitude (Banff Mount Norquay)1,739m
Max Vertical396m

Ratings & Suitability

Ratings for Banff Mount Norquay
Expert Skiers
Intermediate Skiers

Banff Mount Norquay Overview

There are few true 'ski towns' around the world, especially those with a choice of top ski areas on their doorstep, each with independent ownership. Austria's Innsbruck, Utah's Park City, New Zealand's Queenstown and Argentina's Bariloche are some of the few examples, Aspen grew up that way but with all the ski areas nearby now owned by one company some feel the character there has gone. Not so in Banff, where the Mount Norquay is the nearest to town and offers flexible skiing by the hour if you just have a little time to spare for a few turns. If you are planning a full day of skiing or riding there is much more terrain available at Sunshine Village and Lake Louise - generally regarded as one of the world's most beautiful ski areas.

Banff came in to being in 1883 when three railway workers building Canada's first trans-Continental railway staked a claim on the hot springs area that bubbled up there. It was named by a Canadian Pacific employee after his home area of Banffshire in North Eastern Scotland, although it doesn't look much like it! Two years later the railway was competed and soon afterwards the Canadian Pacific railway Company built the incredible Banff Springs hotel and Canada's first national park was established, the rest is history. The town has a reputation also for being extremely good value and having genuinely friendly inhabitants. It's particularly impressive that they manage to keep cheerful when you consider the 7600 'Banffites' have to keep smiling at more than three million visitors a year. The snow on the surrounding mountains is known for its quality and abundance which help Sunshine and Lake Louise to open from early November to late May every year - one of the world's longest ski seasons. The experience of being able to spend the day in true wilderness terrain or modern ski areas and then the evenings in a lively resort also appeals to many.

The success of Banff as a world leading ski destination was laid out more than a century ago when Swiss mountain guides led parties of climbers on first ascents of the surrounding peaks and traversed prehistoric glaciers. In leather bindings and wooden skis they discovered untracked snow in wide-open bowls and meadows, laying the groundwork for what was to become a viable ski industry. Settling in Banff and Lake Louise the pioneers helped build trails then roads through the raw, rugged and largely uninhabited landscape and eventually they established hotels and businesses.


Visitors staying in Banff have to choose between four possibilities every morning - to ski Norquay, Sunshine, Lake Louise or lash out on a day's heli-skiing. The three fixed lift ski areas together offer 6,000 acres and 200 plus trails offering skiers and snowboarders of any ability countless challenges. From wide-open bowls and tree-lined glades covered with fresh, dry powder, to meticulous groomed slopes and state-of-the-art snowmaking. Skiers and snowboarders can easily visit each ski area during their stay and then settle at the mountain that suits their style or choose a heli-ski excursion to find the truly untracked snow.

Sunshine is the oldest ski area, established in the 1930s but has been expanding rapidly in recent years with new high speed quads including the Goat''s Eye express which was the world''s fastest on opening and the

Continental Divide. After a short ride from Banff, skiers hop on a gondola ride to stunning upper alpine terrain with wide-open bowls and tree runs carved through the forest. The resort has terrain to suit all abilities.

For advanced skiers and snowboarders the Delirium Drive, the ultimate front country adventure with pitches of 40 degrees and vertical footage of 1919 feet. Delirium will be located on the north face of Lookout Mountain. Sunshine Village also offers the only on-mountain accommodation in Banff National Park and services including pubs, lounges, dining, live entertainment and day care. The world's fastest high-speed quads dominate the three different mountain faces available to skiers. With close to 30 feet of snow each year and the longest season in the Rockies, Sunshine Village's 100 per cent natural snow is generally

regarded as some of the world's best.

For scenic grandeur, imaginative terrain design, and sheer size, the Lake Louise Ski Area, 57km (35 miles) west of Banff ranks with the finest in the world. One of Canada's largest ski areas, Lake Louise offers skiers and snowboarders of all abilities virtually unlimited skiing and riding. Skiing Louise's vast terrain is over 11 square miles and is spread across four mountain faces, offering open powder bowls, glades, chutes, and over 100 groomed trails. Featuring some of North America's most exciting terrain, Louise is also a skier friendly mountain with a green, or easy run, from every chairlift on the mountain. Tied together with a system of 11 interconnecting lifts, Lake Louise has an abundant amount of natural snow (15 feet in the bowls), backed up with Canada's largest snowmaking system, Louise has dozens of long protected tree lined runs, and 65% of the terrain below treeline, you can ski at Louise even when it is snowing.

As the pioneer ski resort in Banff National Park, Mount Norquay completed its first chair lift in 1948 and has continued to change with the times. Recently fully revamped with new lifts and runs as well as an expanded fleet of grooming and snowmaking equipment, Norquay's beginner, intermediate and advanced terrain is spread over 25 tree-sheltered runs. The brand-new lodge sports post and beam wood construction, cathedral ceilings, fireplaces and wrap-around sun decks. Night skiing is also offered every Friday. With five lifts, including two quads, Mount Norquay is the smallest of Banff's three areas, but also the closest, only 6km (4 miles) and served by a free shuttle bus from the town's hotels. Last season Norquay opened a new section of terrain known as the American Basin - located to the skier's right of the North American run its expert terrain includes a wide open powder bowl.

There are a variety of pistes to suit all levels of skier ability, from Beginner to Expert.


Banff Mount Norquay's commitment to Snowboard Park building and maintenance has been enhanced with the purchase of a Turbo Pipe Grinder. This newest piece of equipment is made in Europe and costs $70,000 to purchase. Snowboarding continues to be an important part of the Norquay market. The snowboard park includes two halfpipes, one competition level and one intermediate. It also includes a semi-permanent boarder cross track and other park features such as gab jumps and table tops of varying size and difficulty.

Location and Map

Where is Banff Mount Norquay?

This ski resort is in the Canadian Rockies in Alberta.


Tap Show Map in Full Screen for Full-Screen, or see J2Ski's Resort map, showing Hotels and Ski Shops.

How to get there

 By Air

The nearest airport to Banff Mount Norquay is Calgary International, 101 minutes drive away.


Ski Lift Capacity

The six ski lifts are able to uplift 5,000 skiers and snowboarders every hour.

Snow Making

Snow-making is available, with 8 snow cannons.

Season Dates

When is Banff Mount Norquay open?

We don't currently have confirmed season dates, but hope to soon.

Usual opening is late November (Usually open weekends in November then fully open from December), and usual closing is Late April.

NOTE:- Ski area, lift and piste opening is subject to Current Snow Conditions.

COVID-19 / Coronavirus

We don't yet have specific details of the COVID-19 precautions being taken in Banff Mount Norquay, but they are likely to include most of the following :-

  • Face masks required on lifts, and in shops.
  • Social distancing in public areas.
  • Reduced lift capacity.
  • Extensive disinfection / sanitization.

French Ski Resort COVID-19 Measures describes further measures that may also be applied.

Visit the Banff Mount Norquay Tourist Office for the latest.

Talking about Banff Mount Norquay

Mentions in recent J2Ski News Items and Snow Reports from our users...

Aprés Ski

Banff has a lively après ski scene with 50 or so bars and night spots, some of the most popular including Wild Bill's, Whiskey Creek, the rose and Crown, Paddock Bar and The Works Nightclub. The Banff Centre, which began life as a summer theatre school in 1933 is an internationally renowned cultural centre for the arts, providing resources and instruction to professional performing artists. The Banff Centre presents a number of events year-round, including music, dance, opera, theatre, films and lectures.

The last ten days of January traditionally sees the resort's famous Winterfest, which has run for more than 80 years. Events start to roll with the ever-popular Town Party (1500 people and five bands at the Banff Springs Hotel), and continue with the Snow Ambassador Contest, Art Walk, Bar Golf Pub Crawl, Wine Challenge, Snowboarding competition, Oktoberfest in January, giant tug of war, and outdoor snow carnival relay races, just to name a handful of the over 30 events which make up the Festival. The Annual Mountain Madness Relay is a local favourite - a five-person relay race from the top of Mount Norquay to Central Park. Other facilities available throughout the summer include a four screen cinema and night skiing is possible on Mount Norquay.

Banff Mount Norquay