The city is on the banks of the Columbia River just south of the Revelstoke Dam and near its confluence with the Illecillewaet River. East of Revelstoke are the Selkirk Mountains and Glacier National Park, penetrated by Rogers Pass used by the Trans-Canada Highway and the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR). South of the community down the Columbia River are the Arrow Lakes and the Kootenays. West of the city is Eagle Pass through the Monashee Mountains and the route to Shuswap Lake.
Revelstoke's economy has traditionally been tied to the CPR, and it maintains a strong connection to that industry. However forestry, construction, tourism and retail have increased over the past decades. Today, telecommuters, freelancers, tech workers and entrepreneurs play an increasingly important role in Revelstoke's success.
Revelstoke was founded in the 1880s when the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) was built through the area; mining was an important early industry. It was named Farwell, after a local land owner and surveyor. Until then, the spot was called the Second Crossing, to differentiate it from the first crossing of the Columbia River by the CPR at Donald. The city was named by the CPR in appreciation of Lord Revelstoke, head of the UK investment bank that saved the railway from bankruptcy in the summer of 1885 by buying the company's unsold bonds, enabling the railway to reach completion.
The construction of the Trans-Canada Highway in 1962 further eased access to the region, and since then tourism has been an important feature of the local economy, with skiing having emerged as the most prominent attraction.
Revelstoke BC is in prime black bear and grizzly bear habitat.
Revelstoke holds the Canadian record for snowiest single winter. 2447 cm (80 feet) of snow fell on Mt. Copeland outside town during the winter of 1971-72. The townsite received 779 cm and snow levels were higher than many roofs around town by more than a few metres.
Greyhound Canada terminated all services in Western Canada and Northern Ontario effective October 31, 2018.
- Rider Express, toll-free: . Bus service along the Trans-Canada Highway from Winnipeg to Vancouver, twice daily. Service from: Salmon Arm, Kamloops, Hope, Abbotsford, and Vancouver (British Columbia); Calgary, Strathmore, Canmore, Lake Louise, and Banff (Alberta); Medicine Hat, Swift Current, Moose Jaw, Regina, Whitewood, and Moosomin (Saskatchewan); and Brandon, and Winnipeg (Manitoba).
BC Transit operates several routes around Revelstoke, but the small town size makes walking or biking sufficient for getting around.
- Revelstoke Railway Museum, Victoria Road, ☎ . Contains exhibits on the building of the railway, the workers involved and current operations.
- 1 Revelstoke Mountain Resort, 2950 Camozzi Road (heading south of downtown on Airport Way, left on Nichol Rd to the end, right on Camazoni Rd), ☎ , toll-free: . On the west side of Mt. Mackenzie 6 km from downtown Rossland, boasts the highest vertical run in North America at 1,713 metres (5,620 ft). The resort does relatively less grooming than other resorts but gets 12-18 m of snow yearly and has lots of terrain. The resort offers food and ski/snowboard rental services. The shuttle bus or hitchhiking are two popular alternatives for accessing the resort from town without a car. The resort also offers 3,121 acres of fall line skiing, high alpine bowls, 13 areas of gladed terrain and more groomed terrain. $86/day at window but can get discounts..
- Mount Revelstoke National Park is just north of the town.
- Revelstoke is home to four heli-skiing and two cat-skiing operations.
- There are numerous backcountry skiing lodges in the area.
- Revelstoke is also a major snowmobiling destination.
- In the summer, mountain biking, rock climbing and kayaking are popular activities.
If looking for ladies' clothing, stop at Daspy Fashions in the Alpine Village Shopping Centre. Men can shop at Style Trend Clothiers in the downtown core.
- Universal Footwear, Alpine Mall, ☎ . M-Sa 9AM-6PM, Su 11AM-4PM. True local shopping experience, offering great selection and unparalleled customer service. Brands include Clarks, Ecco, Josef Siebel, El Naturalista, Ms Moo, Scarpa, Dunham, Nike and New Balance.
- Outabounds (1st Street west). Outabounds sports a rustic but relaxed atmosphere, with wood burl tables and cordovan leather couches. A great place for an appres ski.
- Woolsey Creek Restaurant, 604 Second Street West (corner of Garden Street), ☎ . 5-10PM. Casual fine dinning with cozy atmosphere, Patio and fire places. Duck Confit, Jambalaya, chorizo pasta, Beef tenderloin, and a good selection of BC wines. $20.
- Frontier Restaurant, Trans Canada Hwy #1, +1 250 837-5119. Western themed restaurant off the highway. Not the fastest, but good food, and a nice place to stop for lunch.
- Outabounds (1st Street west). Outabounds sports a rustic but relaxed atmosphere, with wood burl tables and cordovan leather couches. A great place for an après-ski.
- The Village Idiot, 306 Mackenzie Ave, ☎ . A bar offering good food and drink and retro ski decor, ideal for après or dinner after a day on the mountain. Their homemade pizza is a highlight.
- [formerly dead link] The Last Drop Pub, 200 3rd St. West, ☎ . 11AM-2AM. Authentic British-style pub with 17 beers on tap and excellent food. Cozy up to the couches by the fireplace after day of skiing or stop in at night and check out whichever band is on stage. Live music 4 nights a week.
- Revelstoke KOA, ☎ , toll-free: . 200 RV and tent sites, Teepees, cabins, chalets, pool and pet friendly
- 1 Poppi's Guest House, 313 First St. East (South-east end of downtown), ☎ . Features 5 rooms with multiple beds with a home-like feeling. Pay by the room. Includes laundry machine, shuttle bus, boot driers, gear storage shed, kitchen, two common areas, computer, TV, wifi, some parking, and a room & ski lift ticket package deal. $60-110 double occupancy, season dependent.
- 2 Samesun Hostel, 400 Second St. West, toll-free: . $32 per dorm.
- 3 The Cube Hotel, 311 Campbell Ave., ☎ , e-mail: email@example.com. Booking by the room. Offers kitchen, ski lift ticket discounts, complimentary breakfast, ski shuttle pass. $94/room, starting.
Revelstoke has a variety of online community and tourist resources.
- City of Revelstoke, official town website.
- The Stoke List, Revys classifieds.
- The Revelstoke Current, a local news source.
- seerevelstoke.com, a directory.
The Trans Canada Hwy #1 east of Revelstoke continues on to the town of Golden, passing through Mount Revelstoke National Park and Glacier National Park on its way. The Rogers Pass discovery centre is definitely worth visiting, as are the multitude of small hikes within the parks.
|Routes through Revelstoke|
|Kamloops ← Sicamous ←||W E||→ Glacier NP → Banff|
|END ← Mica Creek ←||N S||→ ferry → Nakusp → Nelson (via )|