How to sneak into Canada: A foolproof guide to scoring pow while the borders are closed

Noble Horvath

Do you want to ski in British Columbia this winter? Do you want to taste the sweet gravy atop a heaping pile of fries and curds? Drink a Kokanee? Start your day with a hot cup of bean water from Timmy Hos? Do you want to ride the lift and […]

Do you want to ski in British Columbia this winter? Do you want to taste the sweet gravy atop a heaping pile of fries and curds? Drink a Kokanee? Start your day with a hot cup of bean water from Timmy Hos? Do you want to ride the lift and hear someone say “eh” every other word? Well, screw all that “you can’t travel into Canada” crap, start thinking outside the box and point yourself North.

Sure, the border between the United States and Canada might be closed right now, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get there. There are over 5,000 miles of shared international boundaries between America and our trusty Touque (pronounced ‘tuke’)—you just gotta find the right way to sneak into the country. Thankfully, we’ve consulted our moose hunting, wood cutting, hockey playing, syrup trafficking friends to get the inside scoop on how to get across the border and score some seriously awesome Canadian pow.

Try one or try all, you’ll be a real courier des bois in no time, a real “runner of the woods,” a real pow chaser on a mad, ill-advised dash into a land of bottomless snow, poutine and hockey lovin’ babes. Or, you’ll be quickly tracked, arrested and slowly tortured—forced to watch ski movies on mute—by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.


Canadians love canoes. Why? We have no idea; they’re like the loser brother to kayaks. Kinda like a manatee, slow and cumbersome, and totally uncool. But, a true oarsmen might recognize its potential. With the simple stroke of the paddle, you’ll be out of Vermont and into Quebec in no time. Will you be right where you need to be? No, you’re more than 2,000 miles from the powder fields of Revelstoke but, hey, at least you’re in Canada, right? Now, if you really want to go the extra mile, really want to feel that sweet taste of success when you make it across the Saint Lawrence River, just carve your own canoe. It’s that simple. Just like the surfers of yore, who transformed hundred-year-old koa wood to form the first boards, you’ll be a pioneer, a craftsman and a fucking legend. And, it’ll be a lesson in “letting go.” Cause there’s absolutely no way you’re gonna lug that 1,000-pound monstrosity all the way from Quebec City to Calgary. You’ll want to leave it on the shoreline and find a place to hide… quick!


It might not be easy but, once you’re an inside member of the most powerful maple syrup conglomerate (ahem… mafia) in the world, you’ll be untouchable, untraceable. Just like the movies. You ever seen The Departed? What a great flick. You’ll be like Leo in The Departed. Now, this is certainly easier said than done, so you’ll be playing the long-game.

The first thing you need to do: Realize the stakes are high. Right now, maple syrup from Quebec, stored in barrels and lining vast warehouses, is worth more than a barrel of crude oil. It’s literally liquid gold without Fort Knox to protect it. Next, you’ll want to get in touch with a guy named Ricky, a high-level black market syrup trafficker and a real die-hard Canadian. Although, in very un-Canadian fashion, he never apologized for organizing a black market syrup trafficking ring. Oh well, he’ll still be your go-to for all things “off the table” and your first source to getting in cahoots with the mob.

Once you’ve got the “in,” you’ll need to make yourself useful, and you’ll offer to drive the syrup from Montreal to Vancouver in a semi-truck. No questions, just do it. Along the way, you’ll stop in Alberta and British Columbia, watch the Oilers, the Flames and maybe even stop at a rodeo in Calgary, but you’ll also be inching ever-closer to the glorious, powder-laden Selkirk Mountains; that much closer to ripping powder. Canada’s Powder Highway is gonna take on a whole new meaning once you’ve become a syrup trafficker.


Yeah, we know: This isn’t the most glamorous of ideas and it’s definitely not PETA-friendly. Who wants to hunt a moose anyway? Fuck those guys. Sometimes, though, we have to go to outrageous lengths to achieve great things—like scoring neck-deep snow at Kicking Horse or Whitewater. In this case, that “great” thing you’ll need to do is become friends with a moose hunter (which is a real thing), gain his trust and earn an apprenticeship under his watch. With your newfound life’s work, you’ll be able to gain a visa and long-term access to the Canadian Rockies or, better yet, you’ll be able to get your moose huntin’ friend to meet you at the border crossing, somewhere deep in the bush. Somewhere really out there. Somewhere between Regina and Kamloops—that’s where you’ll sneak across. Your last move? When you arrive, instead of hunting the moose, you’ll mount it and ride it bareback to the base of Whistler Mountain, where you’ll be revered for ages to-come. The Great Moose Wrangling Skier.


Ey, bud, you know what every Canadian really likes? Nah, we’re not talking about lacrosse or Tim Horton’s (we’ll get to that later). And we’re not talking about apologizing for things unnecessarily. We’re talking about HOCKEY, the beautiful game of hockey. Canadians live and breathe that shit. Did you say, “Do you want to watch the Leafs game?” or, did you say, “Honey, I want to fulfill all of your deepest sexual fantasies?” … because I know which one the Canadians would choose. Here’s the plan: You’ll join a local men’s league somewhere in your hometown, make it to the regional championships and win. Kinda like the movie Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, you’ll then go to the national championships of C-league men’s hockey. You’ll win that game, too.

In literally no time at all, you’ve gone from zero-to-hero because you scored the winning goal in every game. Everyone wants autographs and all the dudes on the team are like “Hey man, great work out there!” but you’ve got something bigger at play: Scoring a storm day at Fernie. Soon, you’ll get a note in the mail inviting you and the boys to compete at the International Men’s C-League Super World Series Bowl Tournament at an arena in Banff. It’s all you need—an excuse. Your bag packed unsuspectingly with ski gear instead of hockey equipment, the only thing left to do is ditch the team, score a lift ticket and ski off in a blaze of glory. Do you believe in miracles? Yes!


According to this “news” article, eight out of every ten cups of coffee bought in Canada comes from a Timmy Hos. So how does a skier, insatiably dreaming of tit-level snow in the Canadian wilderness, capitalize on this situation? Easy. Open a Tim Horton’s breakfast franchise in whatever town you choose. Literally anywhere. Canadians, no matter the place, will welcome the new establishment. Studies show…

It’s a real win-win: You’re guaranteed good business from Canadians who seemingly can’t get enough of this stuff, and everyone loves coffee. On your way into Canada, just bribe the border patrol agents with a freshly brewed cup ‘o joe and they’ll be so infatuated with the watered-down flavor, they’ll forget they’re on the job.

Heck, just say your name is Tim Horton and see what happens. Everyone wants a taste of his finely roasted beans anyway. Best case scenario? Border patrol won’t ask questions, you’ll get a key to the city, they’ll fill up your tank and wish you “bon voyage” in a French-Canadian accent. Powder turns and coffee, the perfect ploy.

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