The Sun Peaks story starts with Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc, ‘the people of the confluence’, whose vast traditional territory stretches across the interior of British Columbia from the Rocky Mountains to the Fraser River.
Tod Mountain stands tall over the heart of Secwépemc territory and in 1959 its snowy summit attracted the attention of five keen Kamloops locals who saddled their horses and set off to explore potential new ski terrain. After reaching what is now Top of the World, they marvelled at Crystal Bowl and began dreaming of a chairlift that would bring them back lap after lap. That chairlift opened for first tracks in November 1961. Today, Sun Peaks is Canada’s second largest!
A chronological outline of all major events that have occurred at Sun Peaks Resort dating back to the resort’s first year of winter operations under the name Tod Mountain.
Sun Peaks Resort History
A chronological outline of all major events that have occurred at Sun Peaks Resort dating back to the resort’s first year of winter operations under the name Tod Mountain.
- The Burfield Lodge and Chairlift opened to the public in 1961.
- Fire damaged the Burfield Chairlift equipment and forced a closure.
- Tod Mountain re-opened in December 1970.
- Harry Burfield died when the plane in which he was touring the mountain crashed.
- The Shuswap Double Chairlift was installed; chairlift located near the base of Bento's Day Lodge to upper Exhibition.
- The Crystal Triple Chairlift was installed.
- The Shuswap Day Lodge was constructed.
- Construction began for a 49 lot subdivision across from the Burfield Lodge.
- The top station of the Crystal Chair was badly damaged by a mechanical fire.
- Paving of access road from Whitecroft Village to Tod Mountain was completed.
- Nippon Cable Company Ltd. of Tokyo, Japan purchased Tod Mountain.
- Nippon Cable created a new long range Master Plan and signed a new Master Development Agreement with the Province of British Columbia. The first phase of the Master Plan was initiated.
- Extensive development of the resort began with the construction of new runs, Sunburst Chairlift, Sundance Chairlift, Village Platter, new facilities, and new infrastructure. The Sundance Chairlift was originally a fixed grip quad running from the base to where tower 15 is on the present day lift. Approximately $12 million was invested in resort development.
- West Bowl T-Bar installed; t-bar transplanted from lower Exhibition.
- Lift company name was changed to Sun Peaks Resort LLP.
- Development of the new Village Day Lodge, the "Board Beyond Belief" Snowboard Park, servicing of the Village as well as the Sunburst and Fairways single family subdivisions (approximately $8 million).
- Nine holes of the 18-hole golf course were completed.
- Opening of the first nine holes of the 18-hole golf course in late August.
- Conversion of the Sundance Chairlift to a high speed, detachable quad chair and extending the length approximately 800 vertical feet.
- Opening up 40 acres (16 ha) of brand new intermediate terrain
- Completion of Phase 1 of the 200 room Nancy Greene Cahilty Lodge (ski in/ski-out), Sun Peaks Lodge (ski-in/ski-out), 3 town house developments and 4 single family homes in Sunburst subdivision.
- SNOW COUNTRY MAGAZINE award winner: #1 in Mountain Trail Design in North America.
- Construction of 35 million gallon snowmaking reservoir.
- Construction of 25 new homes in the Sunburst and Fairways subdivisions.
- Private developers build Sundance Lodge hotel.
- Completion of the covered bridge and the driving range.
- Clearing and rough grading of the back nine holes of the 18-hole golf course.
- First 2.5 km of Valley Trail and 1 km of Alpine walking trail completed.
- Run improvements to Lower Cruiser, Lower Exhibition, Lower Blazer and 5th Avenue.
- Upgraded Sunburst Express from capacity of 1,500 people per hour to 2,000.
- SNOW COUNTRY MAGAZINE award winner: #2 Best Design for Day Lodge under $2M (Village Day Lodge) in North America.
- SKI CANADA MAGAZINE award winner: Best Weather in Canada, Best Terrain Variety in Canada.
- Sun Peaks Sports Centre completed construction of ice rink, tennis courts, heated pool & hot tub.
- Private developers build three new hotels: Radisson Hearthstone Lodge, Radisson Fireside Lodge, and Heffley Inn.
- Completion of Sundance subdivision (Phase I).
- SNOW COUNTRY MAGAZINE award winner: #1 in Mountain Village Design in North America.
- SKI CANADA MAGAZINE award winner: Best Apres Ski in Canada, Best Kids Resort Features, Best Grooming in Canada.
- Completed construction of Sun Peaks Stables, Timberline Village and Forest Trails multi-family developments, McGillivray Lake Outpost (log cabin destination for cross country skiers and mountain bike riders), fourteen food and beverage facilities, and seven retail outlets.
- New Burfield Quad was installed using the original base terminal from the Sundance.
- Increased capacity on the Sunburst and Sundance chairlifts and new Carpet Lift.
- Bike carriers were installed on the Sunburst Express chairlift and the Sun Peaks Bike Park opened to the public, providing nearly 2,000 feet of lift-accessed vertical.
- New buildings and facilities for Snow Sports School, Group Rentals, and Daycare.
- Servicing of Sundance subdivision (Phase II) and Fairways subdivision (Phase II).
- Construction of 5 single family homes in Sunburst and Sundance subdivisions.
- SKI CANADA MAGAZINE award winner: Best Grooming in Canada, Best Locals in Canada.
- Announcement of $70 million dollars in investments, including the Delta Sun Peaks Resort Hotel and Conference Centre, a new $40 million 226 room hotel with 11,000 square feet of meeting and conference space, completion of the 18 hole par 72 golf course in the summer of 2001, lift and trail development on the 3rd skiable mountain – Mt. Morrisey, and completion of the village core.
- Construction of the $40 million dollar Delta Sun Peaks Resort Hotel and Conference Centre commences, scheduled to open October 2002.
- Devastating fire destroyed the Delta Sun Peaks Resort Hotel on October 26, forcing a complete re-construction.
- Morrisey platter lift completed and 17 new trails developed on Mt. Morrisey.
- Development of the last nine of the 18-hole golf course begins, with expected completion in October 2002, opening 2003 golf season.
- Extension of the Valley Trail to Burfield Drive.
- Construction begins on Phase 1 of an $8 million dollar joint venture project with the Little Shuswap Indian Band and Whispering Pines Indian Band. Phase 1 of the development consists of a 10,000 square foot, 48 bed staff housing complex and 6,000 square feet of service-oriented commercial space.
- Delta Sun Peaks Resort Hotel and Conference Centre opens October 2002.
- Construction of Phase 2 Fairways Cottages completed.
- Morrisey high speed quad completed and 17 new trails opened on Mt. Morrisey.
- Development of the last nine of the 18-hole golf course continues, with expected completion date of October 2003, opening 2004 golf season.
- Completion of the Valley Trail to Burfield Drive.
- Construction completed of a 10,000 square foot, 48 bed staff housing complex and 6,000 square feet of service-oriented commercial space.
- Addition of a new backcountry cat skiing outfit on Tod Mountain.
- Resort survives the BC wildfires with no damage to the recreational boundary area.
- Trails Edge – Phase 1 of the four phase master plan was completed.
- Opening of the new tube park Tube Time.
- Opening of Sun Peaks’ first full service spa.
- Trapper’s Landing sells out in 6 hours, bringing in over $17 million.
- 300,000 skiers visit Sun Peaks during the 2003–04 winter season.
- Sun Peaks announces Phase 2 of its Master Development Plan.
- Phase 2 development of Mountain View Drive begins.
- Sun Peaks Resort awarded the Silver Eagle Award for Water Conservation from SKI Magazine.
- Sun Peaks Resort LLP’s Environmental management system is fully certified to ISO 14001:2015 (Certificate # 2015), becoming the first resort in North America to do this.
- The back nine of the golf course opens for play.
- Lookout Ridge, single family subdivision, begins construction in the East Village.
- Machine-made Bike Park trails reach an all new level at Sun Peaks with the opening of Route 66.
- The Daily Telegraph, a major London, UK, newspaper awards Sun Peaks Resort the top Canadian ski resort for families.
- The Nancy Greene International Race Centre opens.
- The Austrian Ski Team signs a five year agreement to use Sun Peaks as their early season training site while on their way to the 2010 Winter Olympics.
- Sun Peaks Resort LLP's Environmental management system is re-certified to ISO 14001:2015 (Certificate # 0113313).
- The Umbrella Café at Mt. Morrisey opens.
- The Elevation Quad Chair on Tod Mountain opens providing the resort with another lift in the alpine and also servicing the Nancy Greene International Race Centre.
- Sun Peaks Resort LLP has been awarded BC Hydro Power Smart Excellence Award for Outstanding Energy Efficiency Project.
- Construction of the Kookaburra Lodge begins with phase one of the project scheduled to be completed in 2009.
- The Canadian Ski Council awards Sun Peaks the National Winner of the Industry Recognition and Excellence Award for its outstanding record of customer loyalty, excellence in customer satisfaction, and strong commitment to increasing growth in skiing and snowboarding.
- Ski Canada Magazine award winner: #1 Resort in Western Canada for Best Weather.
- The Delta Residences Sun Peaks Resort opens November 2007.
- WestJet begins service to Kamloops and Sun Peaks Resort year round from Calgary, Alberta, beginning December 15, 2008.
- Olympian and Sun Peaks Resort's Director of Skiing Nancy Greene appointed to the Canadian Senate by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
- Sun Peaks Resort named one of the top 10 resorts in North America by Condé Nast Traveler Reader's Poll.
- The Bluebird Market opens in the Delta Residences.
- 342,000 skier visits during the 2007–08 winter season, a 5% increase over skier visits during the 2006–07 winter season.
- Cadogan Guides award winner: Best Family Resort in North America.
- The grooming fleet continues to grow with the purchase of three new Pisten Bully groomers, one of which is equipped with a new Yellowstone Dual Track Setter to improve the Nordic skiing experience.
- Ski Canada Magazine award winner: Best Race Training Centre, Best Kids' Terrain Park, Best Ski-in/Ski-out Village, and Best Alpine Resort in Summer.
- For the second time, the Canadian Ski Council awards Sun Peaks the National Winner of the Industry Recognition and Excellence Award for outstanding record of customer loyalty, excellence in customer satisfaction, and strong commitment to increasing growth in skiing and snowboarding.
- The Kookaburra Lodge opens in fall 2009, offering resort guests affordable, residential apartments ranging from one to four bedrooms, plus several commercial spaces on the ground floor of the building.
- WestJet expands air service to Kamloops and Sun Peaks Resort with a Vancouver flight connection.
- The Delta Sun Peaks Resort opens two new restaurants in the Delta Residences. The M Room features a fine dining menu highlighting regional, fresh cuisine, while Morrisey’s Public House provides the village’s first Irish inspired pub offering.
- Sun Peaks Resort LLP signs a multi-year terrain park sponsorship agreement with Rockstar Energy Drink.
- The Mascon Hangout catering to teenagers opens in the Sports Centre.
- Sun Peaks granted Mountain Resort Municipality Status by the Province of British Columbia.
- WestJet expands air service to Kamloops and Sun Peaks Resort with an Edmonton flight connection.
- For the second year in a row, the Canadian Ski Council awards Sun Peaks Resort the National Winner of the Industry Recognition and Excellence Award for outstanding record of customer loyalty, excellence in customer satisfaction, and strong commitment to increasing growth in skiing and snowboarding. This is the third time Sun Peaks has won this award.
- In winter 2012, we celebrate the 50 year anniversary of Tod Mountain and the 20 year anniversary of Sun Peaks.
- Winter 2011–12 marked the 50th Anniversary of Sun Peaks Resort at Tod Mountain.
- Nordic skiing attendance record set on December 29, 2011.
- Camping & RV Park opened adjacent to the Sports & Aquatic Centre in summer 2012.
- Two new all mountain bike trails constructed in the Sun Peaks Bike Park in summer 2012. The Altitude trail extends the Park's vertical to 825 metres, as well as providing access to the "Top of the World" alpine area. Big Rock Ride introduces a great route past the snowmaking reservoir to the summit of Sundance, down to McGillivray Lake and the entire cross country trail network on Mt. Morrisey.
- Bicycle Pump Track built in Parking Lot #5 in summer 2012.
- Sun Peaks Resort celebrates a record-breaking summer in 2012; the largest number of visitors in one summer day, the most summer chairlift passengers in one day, and growth in overnight occupancy each month through the summer.
- Sun Peaks Nordic Centre completed in November 2012, providing a hub for all things Nordic and open for the 2012–13 winter season.
- Sun Peaks Bike Park hosts the 2013 Canada Cup DH MTB race.
- The Sun Peaks Nordic Centre opens to the public, providing a convenient rendezvous, warming station, meeting place for Nordic lessons, as well as ticket sales and rentals during busier periods.
- Bug Out glades are opened to the public off of Rambler, taking advantage of new terrain opened up by our Forest Health Program's beetle kill removal.
- Sun Peaks hosted the 2014 Dew Tour AM Series in the Rockstar Energy Terrain Park.
- Sun Peaks' premier hotel property ownership taken over from Delta Hotels & Resorts by Sun Peaks Resort LLP, with major improvements undertaken to the property.
- Sun Peaks Bike Park hosts the 2014 Canadian DH MTB Championships.
- Mt. Morrisey cross country mountain bike trail network was mapped and offered to the public.
- Over 500 acres of skiable terrain was added to the ski area boundary, thanks to the addition of both West Morrisey and Gil's alpine zones. These additions brought our total skiable acreage up to 4,270 acres, making Sun Peaks Resort Canada's second largest ski area.
- Whiskey Jack and Heinz's Way were added to the Nordic trail network, the former a dedicated intermediate dog-friendly trail removing dogs from the busy section of McGillivray Lake Trail.
- Sun Peaks Resort partners with Whistler Blackcomb to offer alpine season pass holders from each mountain 50% off lift tickets at the partner resort.
- New "Learning Zone" added next to the Sunburst Express chairlift for introductory snow sports lessons.
- Sun Peaks hosted the 2015 Dew Tour AM Series in the Rockstar Energy Terrain Park.
- Nordic skiing continues to grow with 2015 boasting the highest numbers yet for both the Sun Peaks Kookaburra and Holy Cow Nordic Loppets.
- Sun Peaks Bike Park hosts the 2015 Canadian DH MTB Championships for the second year running.
- The first Mountain Cross Cart Course in North America was opened in Sun Peaks.
- Record breaking resort occupancy numbers in July, making 2015 overall our biggest summer yet!
- Peaks Pedal Fest event finished off the 2015 summer bike season with a bang, bringing many new riders to the resort and starting an annual festival.
- Billabong comes on as Terrain Park feature sponsor, dubbing the "Billabong Triple Line".
- Two additional runs added to West Morrisey; Wringer and In Tatters.
- McGillivray Lake Nordic ski trail rerouted across municipal lands to remove road crossings on this popular trail. Chickadee trail also added to the Nordic network to create a link between Raven Ramble and Blue Grouse.
- "Learning Zone" surface carpet lift added next to the Sunburst Express chairlift to serve this beginner learning area.
- Sun Peaks Resort LLP introduces online dynamic ticket pricing.
- Sun Peaks Bike Park hosts the 2016 Canadian DH MTB Championships for the third year running.
- Two new lift accessed DH trails added to Sun Peaks Bike Park - Resurrection and Sticky One.
- Construction begins on the Sun Peaks Health Centre.
- New property development announced, VillageWalk.
- NHL size skating rink opens.
- Sun Peaks ranks top three in UK for North American resorts.
- Multi-million dollar investment announced to revitalize Sunburst and Bento’s Lodges.
- Bike Park upgrades to improve top to bottom trail experience along with expanded lift accessed XC options.
- Coors Light Snowbombing hosts North American debut in Canada (April 2017).
- Record visitation for both winter and summer seasons.
- The brand new Sun Peaks Health Centre opens December 2017, including Sun Peaks Family Practice, Mountain Patrol, and Mountain Operations.
- Sun Peaks Resort is named in National Geographic’s Best Winter Trips 2019 article – 10 global spots worth a winter trip.
- Nancy Greene Raine celebrates the 50th anniversary of her 1968 Winter Olympic gold medal win for Women’s Giant Slalom. She is also inducted into the Canadian Tourism Hall of Fame on November 27.
- Sun Peaks' premier hotel, the Sun Peaks Grand Hotel and Conference Centre, undergoes a $7 million renovation of all 221 guestrooms receiving a complete makeover.
- The Orient Quad chair opens on December 24, providing improved skier access between Sundance, Morrisey and the main village. Two alpine trails are added – Hasta La Vista and Main Village.
- The Sundance chairlift capacity is increased by 30% with additional carriers.
- New property development announced, Echo Landing and Peaks West.
- A record number of winter skier visits is achieved.
- Air Canada launches a Toronto Pearson to Kamloops direct flight, operating June – October.
- Sun Peaks Bike Park adds Level Up, a top-to-bottom 9km green progression trail and the Progression Park bike skills zone.
- Sun Peaks Bike Park invests $350,000 into new and updated mountain bike trails including Switcheroo, Canada Line, Bermalade, Steam Shovel and the Progression Park.
- Replacement Crystal chairlift to the Top of the World is announced.
- Sun Peaks Resort joins the Mountain Collective.
- Sun Peaks Bike Park hosts the CLIF Crankworx Summer Series.
- The Sunburst chairlift bike carrier capacity is increased by 30%.
- The new Crystal Chair opens providing a boost of 20% to uphill capacity and a new top terminal location, Top of the World.
- Sun Peaks Resort implements an RFID system for Season Passes and Day Tickets.
- New Sun Peaks Centre opens.
- Installation of Sun Peaks' first loading conveyer at the Crystal chairlift
- West Bowl T-Bar retires
- Winter 2021-22 marked the 60th Anniversary of Sun Peaks Resort at Tod Mountain
- Two new property developments announced, Altitude and Powder Heights
- Avalanche training area “Beacon Basin” opens at the top of the Sunburst chairlift
- $1.5M resort and community investment brings a second summer chairlift online, riding options on all three mountains, with 31km of new trails
- Refreshed logo released, refining our original identity with clean lines and added dimension
- Sun Peaks joins the Ikon Pass
- New property development announced, Switchback Creek