Mount Mackenzie is 2,466m (8058 ft) tall and is located just on the outskirts of Revelstoke in the Selkirk Mountain Range. It was named for Sir Alexander Mackenzie, the second Prime Minister of Canada. His government established the Secret Ballot in 1874, founded the Royal Military College, and created the Supreme Court of Canada and the Office of the Auditor General.
The history of skiing in Revelstoke goes back to the 1890s. When ski jumping on Mt. Revelstoke became less popular in the 1970s because of the labour intensive hill grooming it required, the popularity of downhill skiing on Mt. Mackenzie grew quickly. The Powder Springs ski area was built with a double chairlift on the lower slopes of the mountain. Blake Franklin had the contract for logging on the mountain, and built a road to the top. At the time, the run was 5 miles long, making it the longest ski run in North America. He used his Tucker Snow Cat, marking the beginning of snowcat skiing.
In 2005, Revelstoke Mountain Resort bought Powder Springs from the city of Revelstoke and commenced development of the current-day resort. Opening day for the re-named resort was December 22, 2007. Mt. Mackenzie currently has 1,713 m (5,620 ft) of lift-accessed vertical, making it the greatest vertical of any North American resort. One high-speed gondola and two high-speed quad chairlifts service over 3,100 acres of inbounds skiing and 65 runs. There are over 5,000 acres of backcountry terrain that is accessible by ski touring and snowcat. The huge area comprised of long fall line runs, high alpine bowls and endless gladed terrain, combined with annual snowfall of 9 to 14 m (30 to 45 ft), make Revelstoke Mountain Resort renowned as an ultimate skiers’ paradise. Revelstoke Mountain Resort is the only resort in the world to offer lift, snowcat, heli and backcountry skiing from one village base.
The Freeride World Tour picked Mt. Mackenzie’s Mac Daddy face in 2013 for its highly publicized ski competition amongst some of the most experienced and fearless skiers in the world. The 488 m (1,600) ft face on Mackenzie’s peak sits just outside the resort boundaries and is off limits to regular crowds, reserved for expert skiers only. It now serves as an iconic representation of the mountain in the most popular ski magazines.
While skiing on Mount Mackenzie is the reason for most guest visits to Revelstoke during the winter months, it is just one of six well-known mountains surrounding Revelstoke, in plain view of the town.