Rossland, British Columbia is a picturesque and historic town in the West Kootenays.
Most people know Rossland for Red Mountain, the underrated ski hill. Yes, Red Mountain is a great reason to visit Rossland – but there are plenty of other things to see and do in Rossland, British Columbia.
Top 6 Must See Things to Do in Rossland, B.C.
Whether you’re in Rossland for a day or a week, here are my must see things to do recommendations for Rossland, British Columbia.
1) Red Mountain
Okay, we’ll start with an obvious one. Rossland is home to Red Mountain Resort, one of the best ski resorts in British Columbia. It’s not as well-known as Whistler. It’s not as crowded either.
Red Mountain is a long way from Calgary or Vancouver. That keeps crowds away. Your best bet is to fly into Spokane and drive 2.5 hours north, crossing the border into Canada.
Or, like me, you could grow up 15 minutes down the road from Red Mountain.
Red Mountain has 3,850 acres of skiing, which makes it one of the top ten largest ski resorts in North America. They also get 7.6 meters of snowfall per year. It’s legitimate world class skiing.
We had season passes at Red when I was a kid. I assumed every kid in the world was 15 minutes away from a world-class ski hill. Nope. People in Trail and Rossland are extremely lucky to have Red Mountain in their backyard.
The view from the summit of Granite Mountain on a sunny day is unreal. In one direction, you look down the Columbia River valley into Trail. In the other direction, you see the endless mountaintops of BC. And then you look south and you can see well into the United States.
2) Visit the Rossland Museum & Discovery Centre
Red Mountain – the mountain you just skied on – is hollow. There are miles of mining tunnels underneath and behind Red Mountain.
Rossland exists because of mining. In fact, Rossland was once one of the largest cities in Western Canada in 1897.
In 1890, two prospectors staked the LeRoi gold claim under Red Mountain. The LeRoi mine would ultimately produce more gold than all of the creeks and rivers of British Columbia, totalling more than $30 million. The LeRoi claim kicked off the Rossland gold rush.
The name “Rossland” actually comes from a miner, Ross Thompson, who staked a claim to the region in 1890. Ross wanted to call the town “Thompson”. There were already several towns with that name, so they chose Rossland instead.
Today, you can learn all that history and more at the Rossland Museum & Discovery Centre. A classic destination for West Kootenay school district field trips, the Rossland Museum takes you underground through old mining tunnels. You get to see the challenges miners faced building a mine on top of a snowy mountain 100 years ago.
The Rossland Museum is on the site of the original LeRoi Mine. You get a guided tour of the LeRoi mine. You see artifacts from the area. You also get a look at local history, including history of Cominco, West Kootenay Power, skiing, and more.
3) Go Mountain Biking
Rossland has some of the best mountain biking in the world. In fact, Rossland has been called “Canada’s mountain biking capital”.
In the old days, Rossland’s mountain biking trails were whisky running routes, miners’ trails, and railway beds. Today, they’re excellent biking trails suited for bikers of all experience levels.
Seven Summits, Monticola, Larch Ride, Whiskey, and The Dewdney Trail are all excellent mountain biking trails.
4) Visit Rossland Beer Company
Rossland, with a population of fewer than 4,000 people, has its own excellent craft brewery. Rossland Beer Company is an award-winning brewery in downtown Rossland.
In 2015, Rossland Beer Company put the West Kootenay brewing scene on the map. Their 7 Summits Milk Stout won Gold in the 2015 Canadian Brewing Awards.
Today, Rossland Beer Company is a buzzing local hub in a historic building downtown. There’s a patio in the summer. The small, multi-level tasting room looks over the brewing room.
Popular Rossland Beer Company beers include 4 on the Floor IPA, Helter Smelter Amber Ale, and Paydirt Pale Ale. You should really try that milk stout.
5) Visit Trail, Christina Lake, Nelson, and Other West Kootenay Gems
If you’re visiting Rossland, then it’s easy to do a West Kootenay day trip.
Check out things to do in Trail, just 15 minutes down the hill from Rossland. Go to a Trail Smoke Eaters hockey game. Pregame at the Colander.
Or, drive 45 minutes in the other direction to reach Christina Lake, the most beautiful lake in Canada (okay, I’m biased). Spend a day swimming, hiking, or biking.
Go to Nelson. Check out Castlegar. Drive across the border to the United States and experience the legendary Colville Walmart.
6) Golf Redstone Resort
You want to see bear and other animals while golfing? Go to Redstone Resort. You see at least a deer almost every time. Sometimes you’ll see a bear.
Redstone Resort is an excellent golf course. It’s a Les Furber Signature course just a few minutes down the hill towards Trail. The golf course winds through a hillside forest, taking you up and down through 27 (total) holes.
Redstone is trying to brand itself as the most beautiful golf course in Canada. It’s definitely pretty, but there’s a lot of competition in that category. Anyways, Redstone Resort is worth a 9 or 18-hole visit.
Where to Stay in Rossland
Rossland is only home to 4,000 people, but it’s a tourist town, which means there are plenty of places to stay.
You can stay at hotels in the center of Rossland, in which case you’ll be close to everything.
Or, you can stay at hotels at Red Mountain Village, in which case you’re close to the ski hill (even ski in / ski out at many places), although you’re a few minutes drive away from town. These places fill up quickly in the winter.
I’m the Wandering Boozebag – not Trivago. Check the usual sites for the best hotels.
Airbnb, VRBO, and vacation rental sites are all available in Rossland.
Where to Eat in Rossland
Some of the best places to eat in Rossland include:
The Flying Steamshovel: A legendary place to eat for decades, The Flying Steamshovel is now a gastropub and hotel with a diverse selection of food.
Misty Mountain Pizza: Last time I was in Rossland, Misty Mountain Pizza fed a bachelor party’s worth of big dudes. They were also one of the first pizza places in Canada (that I saw) offering daiya vegan cheese pizza (which I still think is gross)
Seven Summits Coffee Company: Seven Summits Coffee Company is one of two excellent coffee places on the main street of Rossland.
Alpine Grind: Alpine Grind is in the heart of downtown Rossland. It’s a popular coffee shop with an outdoor patio.
Subway: Okay, okay, I know. It’s Subway. How good could it be? But the Subway in Rossland has won awards for being one of the best Subways in Canada. Seriously.
The Rock Cut Pub: Like The Flying Steamshovel, The Rock Cut Pub has been a Rossland institution since before I was born. Just across the highway from Red Mountain, The Rock Cut has always served good beer and food in a bar / pub / restaurant type atmosphere.
Idgie’s Restaurant: Idgie’s Restaurant is so famous they once turned away Kurt Russell when he was in town filming Miracle. Yes, Idgie’s really messed up that night. Idgie’s is another Rossland institution that’s been serving good food for decades.
Final Word: Is Rossland Worth a Visit?
You might know Rossland for Red Mountain. Hey, you might even know Rossland for being the place where they filmed Miracle.
Rossland, British Columbia is a beautiful and historic. Located in an ancient volcanic caldera, Rossland is surrounded by snow-capped peaks most months of the year. Go skiing, golfing, or mountain biking. There are plenty of must see things to do in Rossland, British Columbia.