Celebrating Nordic Skiing

Fernie Trails Alliance member organizations and land-use agreement partners have been very active in creating trail systems for winter use. Trails have blossomed out of the imaginative, energetic efforts of a dedicated volunteer collective. Nordic skiing opportunities have grown from a scrubby track set loop on the Fernie dyke, into many well-maintained, groomed trails. The Nordic scene is taking Fernie by storm!

The Fernie Nordic Society’s Elk Valley Nordic Centre (Mount Fernie Provincial Park and Cedars neighbourhood) and Golf Course loops (Fernie Golf and Country Club) now provide great places to skate ski, classic ski, and maybe just plod along with bad wax. The surroundings at these facilities are nothing short of spectacular. With the new warming hut at the EVNC, and all of the trail improvements, this season is likely to hold some magical moments for all who venture out into this special area. Note: no dogs, no bikes, no walkers, and no snowshoers permitted on these trails.

The Fernie Nordic Society is a BC registered non-profit organization founded in Fernie in the fall of 2006. From a small group of dedicated Nordic ski enthusiasts, the membership of the Society grew to an impressive 744 members during the 2015-2016 season.

The Montane trail network has also evolved out on the slopes of Castle Mountain, with the Fernie Trails and Ski Touring Club taking the kudos for its efforts. Providing easy access from town, the 10km loop is track-set as needed, and encourages all trail users to get out and enjoy this expansive area. Multi-use trails are also provided for mountain bikes, walkers, and snowshoers to share. Disturbance of the groomed ski trails is discouraged, so choose your path wisely.

With the addition of the Montane warming hut, which has a most impressive view of the Lizard Range and a nice wood stove to boot, winter adventures day or night are always rewarded.

Anyone venturing out into this area with their canine partner is asked to not leave any brown klister. Bring your doggy do bag and dispose of these unwanted deposits properly. The Montane property is private land that provides trails for your enjoyment, so when utilizing their facilities, be sure to show respect and give thanks.

Fernie Alpine Resort continues to track-set their multi-use Nordic trails, which depart from the Ski Hill Parking Lot 3 trailhead, and wind through the cedar / tamarack forest, with long or short loop options available for your pleasure. Dogs, snobikes, hikers, and snowshoers, all share these trails, so be aware of everyone’s presence, and respect other users.

Island Lake Lodge provides multi-use trails in Cedar Valley, with opportunities for a brisk outing in the magnificent forests aligning Lizard Creek. A long haul up the Snow Cat road to the lodge can be a very rewarding outing, with lunch, perhaps a spa treatment and a ski around Island Lake being a bonus, if proper arrangements are made. The trailhead is located at the Island Lake parking lot, just past the Provincial Park.

As this is snow country, with real mountain weather, always be prepared for the elements when heading out on Fernie trails this winter.