Ymir was a booming mining town in the late 1800’s, with many hotels, a bank, post office, newspaper, hospital, and a population of about 800. The earliest miners in the area arrived in 1860’s when mining claims were recorded on Quartz Creek, our water source.
Today, Ymir is a thriving community of approximately 420 people, with a wide range of residents and businesses. Ymir is home to the annual Tiny Lights Festival, which brings in over 800 people to enjoy music in historical buildings. Local volunteers put on an annual Snowfest as well as Ragnarock, a festival featuring local musicians. There are a number of active societies and community groups including the Ymir Museum Society, the Ymir Cemetery Society, and Renascence Arts and Sustainability Society.
Residents are active in caring for our community and restoring the remaining mining-era buildings. Volunteers built a well-used skate park, restored our old schoolhouse, create a public skating rink, and put on music nights. The Hotel Ymir, built in 1896, is home to an over-400 piece private art collection. The Ymir Palace Inn, dating from 1896, serves as a bed and breakfast. Also from the 1890’s is the Ymir Church Guest House, an active vacation rental.
Tucked in a valley on Highway 6, 20 minutes south of Nelson, BC and 20 minutes north of the US border, Ymir is central to both Whitewater Ski Resort and Kootenay Pass, both world-renowned winter destinations.