Shnai Day 2018 on Hudson Bay Mountain. The slush cup returns after a two year hiatus. (File photo)

Shnai Day 2018 on Hudson Bay Mountain. The slush cup returns after a two year hiatus. (File photo)

Hudson Bay Mountain Resort’s season coming to a close

First Schnai Day in two years happening on Sunday

Hudson Bay Mountain is closing out another challenging season but this time, with a bang.

After not being able to hold the annual Schnai Day for the past two years due to COVID-19 restrictions, the party is back on and scheduled for April 10.

The theme this year is Super Heroes and skiers and boarders are encouraged to get dressed up. The Slush Cup is also returning and Zanna and the Zig Zags will be rocking out in the Whisky Jacks Lounge.

General manager Lex Rei-Jones is excited for the return of the year end event.

“It will feel so good to have live music again and it will be so good to get everyone back together again and have a feeling of somewhat normal,” she said.

Like the previous two seasons, this one also was challenged with pandemic precautions.

“We had to deal with COVID restrictions and crazy staff shortages. We are finishing off the season with five lift operators. On a regular day, we want nine lift operators. So we’ve had our operations manager and maintenance guys working the lifts, we’ve been stretched thin but we are making it work.”

The 43-year-old chair lift also had some maintenance issues this season. But Rei-Jones said they were successful in a joint grant application with Smithers Mountain Bike Association and have purchased almost half a million dollars in chairlift upgrades.

She added the money will allow Hudson Bay Mountain Resort to offer summer operations including mountain biking and will improve the winter experience in the near future.

Rei-Jones said next season is already looking up.

Their overseas hiring partners and the industry in general are feeling positive that the labour shortage will be less severe with more international workers again, which typically make up their frontline team.

Their legendary local pass sale is now on and Rei-Jones added they are offering returning passholders a 10 per cent discount on their 2022/23 pass because of all the challenges of this past season.

Skiing and Snowboarding