Hit the slopes in style with these Vancouver ski shops

Winter alpine and Nordic sports seem to evolve each year, with new technologies creating lighter, faster, higher-performance gear. Outfit yourself with the latest equipment so you can feel secure, confident and stylish on the slopes. These Vancouver-based stores should be your first stop before hitting the local mountains. [Photo credit: iStock.com/ Alija]

Pacific Boarder

Their tagline is “Go Play Outside” and once you’ve stepped inside their massive Kitsilano store and equipped yourself with the latest in downhill, snowboarding or backcountry gear, you’ll want to immediately obey. Their competitive pricing on major brands means they’ll match any lower price you find in Canada in-store or online, so you know you’re getting the best deal for your seasonal investment. Keep an eye out too for mid-season sales, which will make those frequent weekend trips to Whistler a little easier to justify.

Mountain Equipment Co-Op

130 Broadway W, Vancouver, BC V5Y 1P3

Canada’s original outdoor gear shop, MEC has a huge selection of winter sport equipment, from high-performance downhill skis, bindings and boots to backcountry safety essentials to both classic and skate-style cross-country skis to telemarking gear to snowshoes. Their expert staff are all avid alpiners so you know the gear’s been tested by discerning critics. They also offer a decent rental program, meaning you can be on the slopes as soon as they open rather than waiting in epic lines to be fitted.

West Coast Sports

1675 4th Ave W, Vancouver, BC V6J 1L8

Another shop along outdoor activity row on 4th Avenue in Kits is West Coast Sports, specializing in winter sports gear like skis, snowboards and snowshoes. Happy to fit, wax and tune your gear, they also offer rentals and great deals on used or demo equipment.

Valhalla Pure Outfitters

88 Broadway W, Vancouver, BC V5Y 1P2

Inspired by British Columbia’s rugged wilderness and epic outdoor playgrounds, specifically the Kootenay provincial park the store is named for, these outfitters are all about adventure and exploration. From the rigorous mountaineer to the beginner snowplower, Valhalla has your ski and snow needs covered. With an impressive and comforting supply of avalanche safety gear and skis, boards and boots to suit every style and experience level, this BC-owned and operated shop is a local favourite.

When it comes to cooking at home, it helps to have the right tools for the job. From the basics like a frying pan, wooden spoon, sharp knife and cutting board to the more obscure, like a cherry pitter, pizza peel or tortilla press, these stores have you covered. [Photo courtesy of Yellow Pages]
The art of chocolate making combines precision with true creativity and is on full display around Vancouver. Indulge in your favourite sweet treat — you know that dark chocolate is good for you, right? — at any one of these irresistible shops featuring chocolates that are as beautiful to look at as they are delicious to eat.
Rain or shine, Vancouver is an active city year-round. There’s no better way to get motivated than to look good while you’re working out. These stores — all but one Vancouver-founded — will get you in gear. Literally. [Photo credit: iStock.com/BraunS]
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