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Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

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Johannesburg, South...
posts: 4
Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

We are a family from South Africa looking at renting a 4x4 from Seattle to Big Snow near Kelowna. Can anyone tell us where we can rent a 4x4? Do we really need one to get from Seattle to Big White in Jan?

SEATTLE
posts: 4
reviews: 98
1. Re: Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

Greetings,

Well, if you are keen on driving, it is pretty, but it will take some time to drive from Seattle to Kelowna & the Big White area. Depending on road conditions, it could take from six to eight hours. It is about 500kms. A 4x4 is not a bad idea; if not an SUV, then at the very least, you'd want a vehicle with front-wheel drive and chains.

If the cost doesn't scare you off you could also consider flying from Seattle to Kelowna on Horizon Air. Big White runs a shuttle from the airport up to the ski area, and once you are up there, everything is walkable.

Enjoy!

Renton, WA
posts: 1,687
2. Re: Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

I recommend that you do some online research and communicate with rental agencies. A 4x4 might be hard to find, and most rental agencies do not allow their vehicles to be operated with chains. I like the idea of flying into Kelowna, or even Vancouver, instead of Seattle. Eliminates a lot of hassles.

3. Re: Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

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Johannesburg, South...
posts: 4
4. Re: Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

Thank you for your local advice Guy's! We were originally going to fly - maybe we'll do that! There are two reasons why we were thinking of driving from Seattle to Big White. One, is that we were concerned that a flight could be delayed / cancelled and we'd miss out on a day and; the second is that we've never seen that part of the world so we thought that driving would give us the opportunity to see the countryside!

Vancouver, Canada
posts: 7,651
reviews: 42
5. Re: Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

Derek...I am going to out on a limb and guess that you have not done a lot of driving in the snow in beautiful South Africa. Learning how to drive in the snow while driving over high mountain passes and unfamiliar roads during an 8 hour journey is probably not a good idea. I would fly if the costs are not out of sight.

For what it's worth ( and I am going to admit that I am likely anesthetized to the beauty of BC after living here most of my life), the drive from Seattle to Kelowna is not that spectacular in January. It is likely to be raining and snowy in parts.

Have a great visit.

David

Johannesburg, South...
posts: 4
6. Re: Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

David, Many thanks for your words of wisdom! The overwhelming opinion of you local folk say fly - what about getting about in Big White? Do we need a car - we will be in a self catering Condo - we'll need to get to the shops!

Vancouver, Canada
posts: 7,651
reviews: 42
7. Re: Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

There is a fairly decent sized grocery store in Big White called The Market. You are going to pay a premium for groceries there as it is a small "non-chain" store...but convenience counts.

There is also a shuttle into Kelowna for shopping.

You might want to post another thread about groceries and get some input from local experts. I am 500 kms from Big White.

David

Johannesburg, South...
posts: 4
8. Re: Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

thank you David!

Vancouver, Canada
posts: 7,651
reviews: 42
9. Re: Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

You're welcome, Derek! Have a great visit...post a trip report and let us know how you made out.

David

Vancouver, Canada
posts: 13,948
reviews: 38
10. Re: Suitable vehicle Seattle to Big White ski resort in January

Driving up there on a good winter day is no problem, but if you hit bad storms, the delays on the road would be as bad or worse than anything you would encounter at the airport!

I'd also like to second the suggestion that for the specifics of managing your stay at Big White, you post on that forum.