The Kootenay Coldsmoke Powder Festival saw a lot of format changes this year, including the addition of one seriously good party. Here are the deets as well as a slideshow from our buddy and pro photog Steve Ogle.

From February 21 to 24 Whitewater Ski Resort and the nearby city of Nelson hosted the 14th annual Kootenay Coldsmoke Powder Festival. There were a few changes to the event’s overall format this year including the inaugural Coldsmokin’ Bush Party, sponsored by none other than us, Kootenay Mountain Culture Magazine. Held at our new headquarters at 91 Baker Street in Nelson, the event went off with over 300 people showing up over the course of Saturday night. There were musical performances, a reading by KMC senior writer Jayme Moye, a chilli cook-off featuring some of Nelson’s finest restaurants and lots of local beer. In fact, we drained all the kegs. What an effort! Here are some pics from the night taken by Steve Ogle.


Another new event for this year was The Powder Crown, sponsored by The North Face in support of Protect Our Winters. The invite-only freeride competition was to take place on Whitewater’s steepest backcountry terrain on Sunday but because it was snowing (no surprise there) and visibility was low, the comp was moved to Monday. Athletes skinned up to the start gate (no helicopters or sleds allowed) and then chose their own lines to impress the judges. Equal prize money was doled out in the male and female categories and Robin Van Gyn of Whistler took top stop for the women and Andreas Massitti got the first place for the men. Local Eli Lutz came in fourth at the comp. Here are more pics by Steve Ogle.


The Poker Run and costume competition were put on hold this year but it didn’t stop some of the ROAM Randonee competitors from getting dressed up, including Scott Jeffery and Cam Shute who sported neon green slingshot bathing suits over their race attire. (See the photo above.) Obviously their outfits were perfectly streamlined as Shute placed first and Scott got third in the 35+ male category. (Shute also won first place overall.) The best splitboarder in the event was Russell Fountain with a time of 37:20 and the overall female winner was Emma Cook-Clarke with a time of 35:05. For all the results of the competition, visit

There were also plenty of other parties, clinics, demos, contests, and prizes handed out during the Kootenay Coldsmoke Powder Festival, which began as a grassroots gathering where mountain enthusiasts of all levels celebrated Kootenay mountain culture and general stoke for all forms of powder activities. The festival gets its name from the world-renowned snow of the region, which is so light and dry it’s like cold smoke.