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When is it winter in Canada. Like 12" accumulation of snow & daily snowfall.

boyblue

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We try to do two winter vacations a year, so we end up going the last week of November through the first two weeks of December. We then go again for 3 weeks in Mid March. The trips are prettyclose together so in an effort to spread them out a bit, Last year we tried going earlier (Nov 5th check in) but it was just not the same.

The thing is though, are we missing the best time by trying to do two winter vacations? Should we head north in January or February and head south (Chile & Argentina) in June or July?

I guess we could do a 4 week vacation in Jan/Feb and do something else with the other 2 weeks (go to the Bahamas or something).

Any Ideas on how can we get two winter trips into one year?
 

CSB

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If you are looking for snow, certain areas have a very good chance of accumulation, and others it is hit and miss.

For example, take my area just north of Toronto. Right now we are having a bit of a snow storm. Roads are snow-covered and slippery with strong winds. Last week it was a mild 8 degrees (Celcius) and no snow to be seen. If you drive one hour north of the city of Toronto, you hit the snow belt and they get more accumulation there. That is the area of the skiing - Carriage Hills, Intrawest, Cranberry resorts etc.

Here is some info from the Barrie (town 1 hour north of Toronto in the snowbelt area) tourist website:

Average Temperatures in the Barrie Area

Summer Months: June, July, August, September
Average Temperature: 23.4 C, 26.0 C, 24.8 C, 20.1 C
Average Rainfall: 86.6 mm, 73.4 mm, 92.6 mm, 97.6 mm

Fall Months: October, November
Average Temperature: 13.2 C, 6.1 C
Average Rainfall: 74.3 mm, 62.1 mm
Average Snowfall: 2.5 cm, 20.6 cm(8.24")

Winter Months: December, January, February, March
Average Temperature: -4.0 C, -8.1 C, -7.1 C, -2.2 C
Average Snowfall: 62.4 cm (24.96"), 80.2 cm (32.08"), 39.5 cm (15.8"), 28.1 cm

Spring Months: April, May
Average Temperature: 10.6 C, 18.1 C
Average Snowfall: 5.0 cm, 0 cm
Average Rainfall: 57.8 mm, 77.2 mm

Note that the average snowfall is highest in December and January. February has less snowfall but the snow from December and January is still on the ground underneath what falls in February.

Hope this helps.
 

djyamyam

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Visit the west or Quebec

boyblue said:
We try to do two winter vacations a year, so we end up going the last week of November through the first two weeks of December. We then go again for 3 weeks in Mid March. The trips are prettyclose together so in an effort to spread them out a bit, Last year we tried going earlier (Nov 5th check in) but it was just not the same.
Where in Canada do you want to go and what do you want to do? If it's snow sports, you can't beat Whistler or Banff from Jan - Mar. Whistler would be the tougher trade. Banff is definitely less busy in the winter than in the summer and you are within 40 mins of 4 mountains. Even if you don't ski, the Banff area is gorgeous in winter, as is Whistler. Banff would be an easier exchange. Quebec is also another option as they have lots of winter festivals, maple sugar on snow, etc. No offense to our friends in the centre of the universe :D in Toronto, but I think there are better places in Canada to visit during the winter.
 

MoeDan2727

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Nassau, Bahamas?

O.K. so I live in Toronto and hate winter with a passion. I always considered winter sports to be a an oxymoron. :)

You live in the Bahamas and take two winter vacations per year.

Oh well, each to his own.

Yes as a native Torontonian, we do consider this area the centre of the universe. :) But it is not the area to visit for true skiining.

I have to admit that the west is the best, but November is iffy. You're just as likely to get golfing weather as opposed to skiing weather.

January to March in Whistler is ideal, but you can also try Panorama for a change of pace.

I love you Chile idea in July.
 
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jef

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If you want to stay with the East Coast, I'd recommend that you try Mt Tremblant or Mt Ste Anne is Quebec or places in Vermont like Smuggler's Notch, Stowe, Killington, Stratton etc to have a better chance at good snow.

January, February and most of March are pretty safe bet's. Its rare that there is any decent skiing in Ontario in November.
 
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CSB

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I do not think that Toronto is the centre of the universe. I am the centre of the universe, lol.

djyamyam, boyblue inquired about Ontario and Quebec in a recent post so I took the opportunity to answer about the area I know something about. I would not have answered if he had not mentioned Ontario in a previous post.

I love your area of the country and do not understand how people talk about east vs west. Everyone is important and I look forward to coming out west soon and trying out the skiing there.
 
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asp

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The first two weeks in Whistler are easier to get timeshare than later in the winter - and about as reliable for skiing as you can ever be with a ski mountain. It isn't as cold at Whistler as say, Banff, so it is usually pretty good skiing then. If you look at the points ratings for Whistler Vacation Club, you will see the seasonal demands.
 

djyamyam

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CSB said:
I love your area of the country and do not understand how people talk about east vs west. Everyone is important and I look forward to coming out west soon and trying out the skiing there.
Cindy, lots of my relatives live in TO & OT so I had to give a friendly poke about the east :p You gotta come out west soon because the west coast has been dumped on this winter with tonnes of snow cause the mountains over this last month have been sweet!!
 

djyamyam

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Boyblue, my buddy is doing exactly the same thing this year you are looking at doing. He lives on Vancouver Island and skis all winter and is heading to Chile this summer to ski there!

I'm with MoeDan on this one. We try to get away where it's warm cause we always have the cold. If you got warm TSs I'd love to do a direct trade someday ;)
 

boyblue

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CSB said:
.

Hope this helps.
Thanks Cindy that's a big help. I was a little apprehensive about December but now I know that we’re just as likely to get snow in December as any other winter month.
 

boyblue

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djyamyam said:
Where in Canada do you want to go and what do you want to do?

we've been to Alberta & BC and we'll be back but we want to do all of the provinces first. We love to snowmobile, go on little drives, hunt (for good resturants) & have lazy days where we do nothing (4 o'clock sunsets help with that :) ).

Generally speaking we have no expectations so whatever's there we do.
 

MaryH

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If you are hunting for good restaurants, Montreal is great for that...
 

boyblue

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MaryH said:
If you are hunting for good restaurants, Montreal is great for that...
The only thing is we prefer small towns. I guess if a major city is within a couple hours drive that would be ideal. When we do Quebec (probably March or maybe December 2008) I'll be sure to keep those restaurants in mind.
 

ricoba

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How about northern Canada, the Yukon or the NWT or even the arctic.

If that's too far/extreme, northern Manitoba or Saskatchewan?
 

boyblue

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ricoba said:
How about northern Canada, the Yukon or the NWT or even the arctic.

If that's too far/extreme, northern Manitoba or Saskatchewan?
Never thought of it but I'll definetly add them to my list of potentials.

What would be the best time?
 

djyamyam

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Having spent 20+ years growing up in Saskatchewan, you're going to get lots of snow & coldddd! Jan & Feb are cold (avg -20C with it commonly getting into the -30s). The last few winters haven't been quite as bad with the really cold stretches not lasting quite as long. Having said, it's great for winter ice fishing and tonnes of snowmobiling! Not really any timeshares in SK. It's not as cold in March and you still have snow. You'll start getting snow usually around early Nov and for sure in Dec.

In MB, the Elkhorn is the only one that I know of which is near Clear Lake? in the Riding Mountain National park area. I think there's another thread that I saw detailing more info about that. Lot's of snow there too for snowmobiling. The only real skiing you're going to do in either place will be cross-country skiing, which is great exercise.
 
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boyblue

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On our trips we normally spend a week to 10 days at one timeshare & then we move to another. It might be fun to stay in one place for a longer time.
 

PA-

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boyblue said:
we've been to Alberta & BC and we'll be back but we want to do all of the provinces first. We love to snowmobile, go on little drives, hunt (for good resturants) & have lazy days where we do nothing (4 o'clock sunsets help with that :) ).

Generally speaking we have no expectations so whatever's there we do.
Now THAT'S what I call a good attitude. "we have no expectations, so whatever's there we do". I LIKE it!
 

Breezyone

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We tend to have snow in late Nov, definitely in January through March, and we have no railroad here on Prince Edward Island, Canada, and have turned the old line into a walking and biking trail in the spring, summer, and fall and snowmobile trails in the winter. We even have some sking. Our main tourist season is the summer but people come all year round. I rent out my cottage in the summer to tourists but there is no time share as yet. Our island is gorgeous, with fields and fields of potatoes and other crops, you should come visit sometime.
 

qaRuss

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Manitoba in winter, well I live here and love it and there will be no crowds at any resort. It will be very cold (-30 is not unusual in January), but if you like quiet, a fireplace, a terrific on site spa, a good restaurant and visiting a National Park, you will not beat Elkhorn Resort in the winter.
While we own in Hawaii, we've stayed here several times, the most memorable being Jan 1, 2000 checkin in defiance of a prior employers threat to fire all employees not working to accomodate the Y2K disaster pending (now wasn't that just the biggest pile of crap we've been sold!). The week was bitterly cold but we enjoyed cross country skiing (there is downhill nearby), hiking, skating and the pool and (outdoor) hottub immensely and almost exclusively to ourselves.
It was great.
We're just back home from a spring week there with family and enjoyed it just as much. We did a couples massage, it was great!
For another week, Lakeshore (?) in Gimli is very nice and close to Winnipeg (750,000 pop.) so you'd be able to hunt restaurants here, and there are many wildly varied and ethnically diverse as well as all other things large city's have to offer (museums, theater, ballet,symphony, etc)
Add in hockey, curling, ice fishing and snow mobiling and you'll find all winter has to offer right here in sunny Manitoba (and if your lucky, northern lights for we get those a lot too).
Check out www.manitobatravel.com
 

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You mentioned iffy snow in November but not where you go that it is a problem. You don't have to go to Canada to get first class skiiing in November. The mountains in Utah and Colorado have plenty of snow then. We have a timeshare at Marriott's Mountainside in Park City, Ut. and can count on snow in November. It is a newer property built to accommodate the Winter Olympics held there in 2002 so we don't have a lot of winters at this place however, the research we did prior to buying showed only 2 winters in 28 years when they did not have enough natural snow to ski. The last two years have been great. Snow started to fall in October 2004 and by March 2005, 584 inches--set a record among all western ski resorts in the US. Lots of days with 12+ inches of pure powder. Great fun. Unfortuately, we are having to sell our two weeks of floating time there due to an injury (not ski related). Anyway, best of luck in your quest just don't rule out the US for great skiing.
Jack
Jkissane1@comcast.net
 

boyblue

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Thanks GaRuss & Mountainman. Manitoba, Colorado & Utah are on our list. We just decided last week to do Colorado in Nov/Dec 2008 (I'd better go and book that now).

I do have Utah in a Nov/Dec slot but it's a few years down the road if I remember correctly.

We do a Canadian Province every third year and this year is Ontario (Nov/Dec) Manitoba will be the next privince we visit.
 

Canuck

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What about Sun Peaks in British Columbia? Or Kimberley in British Columbia? Both have time shares and great skiing! Oh, and lets not forget Panorama Mountain! There is Radium Hot Springs, Fairmont Hot Springs and the sweet little town of Invermere close by!!! There are time shares on the Mountain of Panorama and in Radium and Fairmont! VERY BEAUTIFUL AREA!!! It's a 3 hour drive from Calgary, and as you know (you mentioned you've been here before) a very spectacular drive through the mountains. All the places I mentioned are good for skiing, not as crazy and commercial as Whistler or Banff and Lake Louise. It's worth researching to see what's a good fit for you! :)
 

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boyblue said:
Thanks GaRuss & Mountainman. Manitoba, Colorado & Utah are on our list. We just decided last week to do Colorado in Nov/Dec 2008 (I'd better go and book that now).

I do have Utah in a Nov/Dec slot but it's a few years down the road if I remember correctly.

We do a Canadian Province every third year and this year is Ontario (Nov/Dec) Manitoba will be the next privince we visit.
Like other Torontonians, I just can't imagine someone from such nice warm place will want to come here to spend our grey, cold Winter!!! You truly don't know what it means by Winter blues until you have lived here for a while and go through a few Winters.

But, if you are coming to Ontario this year, our nice little new Intrawest Village in Blue Mountain is not bad. Not too far from Collingwood, some new decent restaurants in the village, plenty of Winter sports around, but do make sure you are coming NOT earlier than late December.

Other areas that are nice if you like "relaxing" in the Winter (now, that is an oxymoron), Deerhurst resort in Huntsville is always nice. Not a great area for downhill skiing, but great for snowmobiling and country skiing. The resort has decent restaurant on site, great Sunday brunch, and some really good little restaurants nearby like 3 Guys and A Stove.

If you want high end, there is Taboo in Muskoka, and a couple of other new ones. I am not sure if they are in the regular timeshare exchange system, I seem to recall they are in a separate collection of timeshares. Again, this area has great relaxing Winter sports (no downhill skiing) and nice little restaurants.

And when you are bored, drive down 2 hours and visit us in the centre of universe :D In Toronto, you will find very diverse selection of ethnic restaurants, Italian, Indian, Greek, Korean, and "THE" largest Chinatown in North America, with what is generally consider the BEST Chinese food found outside China.

Also here in Toronto, there is always some sort of Winter Festival going on. In the past few years we had Winterlicious when you can sample the top restaurants in Toronto with a very reasonable price. We have Broadway style shows, newly remodelled ROM, night clubs, funky street shopping areas. So, although not a small town, different areas of downtown Toronto have preserved their own flavors so you can experience each area as if it is a small town.

That's why we think we are in the centre of Universe, it is almost perfect except our gloomy Winter!!! :D
 

boyblue

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I'm afraid we are going to be in Ontario from late November to mid December. We're not worried though we've never had a dissapointing visit to Canada I I'm sure this time will be no different :)

We will be visiting:

Carriage Hills - Barrie ON

Corbett Cove - Dwight ON (close to Huntsville right?)

Calabogie - Calabogie O


Thanks for all that great feedback JC!
 
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