Biking, hiking, running, sightseeing, window-shopping, take your pick, Fernie can provide it. With some of the best mountain biking I have ever come across, and outstanding opportunities for cultural expression, Fernie becomes the perfect destination. The toughest decision of the day is what patio you’re going to sit on at the end of the day. Here is a list of my favourite spots.
Starting from the top of the valley, The Bear Lodge patio provides a stunning panoramic view of the Rocky Mountains that magnificently surrounds Island Lake Lodge. Take a casual walk around the lake, or enjoy a full-day hike full of floral and fauna. The Bear Lodge patio is the perfect place to enjoy après while accompanied by a full display of hanging flower baskets and planter boxes bursting with colour. Island Lake has partnered with Fernie Brewing Company to produce “Take A Hike” pilsner, a custom beer to be enjoyed nowhere other then Island Lake Lodge.
Moving down the valley is Fernie Alpine Resort, which offers multiple options for dining. Lost Boys Café, is located at the top of Timber Chair. Enjoy full meal or light snack, while taking in a breath taking view of the entire valley. After conquering the aerial park and zipline, or an adrenaline filled day of downhill biking, take a moment to relish your day on the patio of Rusty Edge. You can look back at the hill and recap with friends about the events that occurred earlier. On Thursdays, enjoy a juicy burger and wet your whistle with a beer for ten bucks. The deal is even sweeter after competing in the Scott Thursday Race Series. The view from the patio is stellar, and the food is real, wholesome, and delicious.
Moving into valley bottom, you reach Tandoor Restaurant and Grill at the Stanford Hotel. As soon as you walk into the restaurant, your mouth starts to water as the smell of India overflows your olfactory. Sit on the patio and listen to the river pass by while as you over indulge in authentic Indian cuisine and plan tomorrow’s activities; perhaps a day on the river fly fishing or white-water rafting?
Into town, we continue the patio tour, and arrive at Bridge Bistro. With a deck filled with flowers, heat lamps that allow you to stay cozy late into the evening, and the sound of the river accompanying your meal, you can be confident that your tummy will be filled and your thirst quenched with delicious food and drinks.
A highly appreciated patio in Fernie, is the Yamagoya patio. A piece of advice for eating at Yamagoya, wear your eating pants. Something with a stretchy waste band, or ladies, a loose flowing summer dress is perfect. The sushi is so unbelievably tasty that by the time you leave, you have consumed your weight in rolls, and drank enough beer to match. The patio is cozy and sheltered from the possibility of any wind. Accompanying you in your evening are glowing Japanese lanterns and expansive views of Mt. Fernie. Plan a hike to the top of Mt. Fernie for the next day to walk off that evening’s dinner.
Upon entering Fernie’s Historic Downtown, you’ll notice the streets lined with seasonal summer patios. This is a great place to watch the happenings of downtown. The Brickhouse, Infinitea, Lunchbox, Loaf, Big Bang Bagels, The Fernie Hotel, and a few others provide these enjoyable patios. They are the perfect place to sit and relax while drinking Fernie Brewing Company beer and eating the authentic cuisine that these great places have to offer. Add view comparable to none other!
Now, finishing off with my favorite patio, Nevados. The patio of Nevados is elegant and welcoming. Filled with laughter, full bellies, twinkling lights, climbing vines, crisp mountain air, and the best margaritas in town. It’s beautifully decorated with greenery, candles, and surrounded by the chef’s herb garden. Whether enjoying the patio for dinner, or a quick lunch at the ‘Cantina’, Nevados will not disappoint. It is the best place to go after a big day of riding, as the food is always delicious and my favourite beer is on tap.
Whether you are enjoying a feast up on the mountainside, or in town, dining in Fernie is always an experience. You’ll catch a glimpse of the true heart of Fernie and what makes it this amazing place that captures people. People who intended to be here for a short time stay longer and still be here fifteen years later.
Elizabeth Hamilton- Local Destination Expert