Cape Smokey Ski Area, Nova Scotia

Cape Smokey Ski Area | Escape2ski | Ingonish, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia | Tourism Cape Breton | Ski Nova Scotia | Tourism Nova Scotia | Ski Cape Breton | Powder Magazine | Ski Magazine | In the Snow | Ski Canada Magazine

Cape Smokey Ski Area in CB, NS & Escape2ski provide info on; vertical drop 1000ft/305m, total trails 8, closest airport 86mi/139km & lifts 2. Cape Smokey Ski Area is located along the beautiful Cabot Trail near the Cape Smokey Provincial Park of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. From the summit of the ski area, you’ll find […]

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Cape Smokey Ski Area in CB, NS & Escape2ski provide info on; vertical drop 1000ft/305m, total trails 8, closest airport 86mi/139km & lifts 2.

Cape Smokey Ski Area is located along the beautiful Cabot Trail near the Cape Smokey Provincial Park of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. From the summit of the ski area, you’ll find spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean and the Cape Breton Highlands National Park.

Planned and financed by the government of Nova Scotia, Cape Smokey Ski Area opened for the 1970-71 season with a few trails and a lift, to bring winter tourism and promote snow sports in the local region. For decades, the ski area was popular with skiers from nearby communities of Ingonish, Neils Harbour, Dingwall, and Ingonish Beach, along with skiers from industrial Cape Breton and mainland Nova Scotia, plus the provinces of New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland.

The Cape Smokey Ski Area has the greatest vertical drop at 1000ft/305m of any ski area in the Maritime Provinces, which are comprised of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island.

For decades, the original orange double chairlift provided access to the snow-covered trails for local snowsports enthusiasts and access to summer sightseeing for the many tourists who travelled the Cabot Trail. Around the early 1990s, the government of Nova Scotia planned a much-needed upgrade to the ski area with the installation of a fixed-grip quad chairlift. However, with the downturn of the economy of Cape Breton, the Province of Nova Scotia no longer wanted to fund further improvements and the ski area was turned over to the local community to continue operations as a non-profit organization. For over a decade volunteers from Ingonish and the surrounding area continued to operate the ski area with several trails and a Poma lift.

In 2019, the Cape Smokey Ski Area was sold to Joseph Balaz, a New York developer who plans to turn the ski area into a four-season destination. The first huge leap into the future was the installation of Atlantic Canada’s only Gondola that opened to the public on Aug 26, 2021.

On the Slopes

  • An eight-minute gondola ride to the summit of the Cape Smokey Ski Area provides access to a variety of beginner, intermediate, and advanced trails, plus spectacular views on your descent down the mountain.
  • The Poma Lift provides access to several beginner trails perfect for those who need extra practice on the slopes or are new to either skiing or snowboarding.
  • The dedicated team of ski and snowboard instructors at Cape Smokey are available to help skiers and boarders to improve their skills or teach newcomers the basics to enjoy their time on the slopes.
  • The day lodge is where you will find the rental shop that has all of your ski and snowboard equipment needs, including skis, poles, boots, helmets, snowboards, and more. They even have snowshoe rentals available for those looking for an alternate outdoor activity.

Off the Slopes

  • There is no lodging available at the ski area; however, only a short distance away in the Ingonish community are several options for overnight accommodations. Just check the Helpful Links section below for assistance.
  • There are many off-mountain activities like snowshoeing at the summit of the Cape Smokey Ski Area or Cross-Country Skiing on the groomed trails for a fee at North Highlands Nordic located in Cape North which is 50km/30mi north of the Cape Smokey Ski Area.
  • The Day Lodge is home to the food and beverage area where dining is available for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Plus, a retail outlet where you'll find logo apparel, T-shirts, hoodies, toques, jackets, and hats.
  • Another option for dining is in the nearby community of Ingonish, located only 15 minutes away to the north of the ski area.
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Mountain Information

Current Status: Closed

Mountain Essentials

Vertical Drop:
1000 ft / 305 m

Base Elevation:
50 ft / 15 m

Summit Elevation:
1050 ft / 320 m

Skiable Area:
95 acres

Average Snowfall:
155 in / 393 cm

Trail Map

Mountain Terrain

Total Trails: 8

Beginner: 2 (25%)

Intermediate: 5 (62%)

Advanced: 1 (13%)

Expert: 0 (0%)

Terrain Parks & Pipes: 0

Snow Cross: No

Super Pipe: No

Half Pipe: No

Jib Park: No

Services

Ski & Snowboard School: Both

Rentals & Repairs: Yes

Parking:  Free

Retail Shops: Yes

Children’s Ski Programs: Yes

Women's Ski Programs: No

Adaptive Ski Programs: No

Childcare: No

Day Lodges: Yes

Restaurants: Yes

Distance from...

Nearest Airport:
Sydney CB NS , 86mi / 139km

Nearest Major City:
Sydney CB NS, 78mi / 126km

Nearest Town/City:
Ingonish CB NS, 5mi / 8km

Mountain Operations

Season Dates: Dec 26 to Mar 26

Skiing & Snowboarding: Both

Open Days: Open Daily

Hours of Operation:
9:00am to 4:00pm : Hours maybe subject to change.

Night Skiing: No

Lift Ticket Prices

Lift Information

Total Lifts: 2

Gondolas: 1

Surface Lifts: 1

Lodging

Mountainside: No

Within 20mi / 33km: Yes

Closest Airport(s)

What our Convenience Rankings™ mean

Sydney Airport  (YQY)
Distance: 86 mi / 139 km
Ranking: Most Convenient

Contact Info

Central Reservations: N/A

Direct Phone: 902-517-0371

Snow Phone: 902-517-0371

Helpful Links

Official Ski Resort Site

Nearby Lodging