Island Lake is the ultimate destination for luxury cat skiing, spacious rooms with soaker tubs, five star cuisine, full service spa and guest service second to none. Experience what everyone is talking about.
For 25 years Island Lake Cat Skiing has consistently provided guests with the best wilderness adventure experience around. This is why it has been at the top of the list of must ski destinations for every serious skier or boarder. Vast, spectacular terrain topped with 12 metres (40 feet) of snow that consistently makes for some of the best skiing in the world.
Watch the Fernie ski film: Ascent to Powder - Tale of a Ski Town
The magnificent peaks of the Lizard Range in the BC Rocky Mountains tower over alpine bowls, valleys and perfectly gladed tree runs. The deep powder of Island Lake Cat Skiing has become a thing of legend - producing some amazing images and film throughout the years. Industry leaders including Scot Schmidt and Craig Kelly helped form a philosophy of ultimate backcountry ski and snowboard experiences as shareholders and regular skiers at the Lodge.
The Island Lake experience goes beyond the skiing and boarding. The luxurious wilderness lodges, exquisite dining, full service spa and level of service take it too the next level. Island Lake is the pinnacle of luxury Cat Skiing, the benchmark to which all others aspire. Island Lake offers 2, 3 and 4-day, all-inclusive cat ski packages throughout the winter season.
Our large and diverse terrain encompasses much of the Cedar Valley, the north end of the Lizard Range, all of Mount Baldy and the front and back slopes of Mount Fernie. At the heart of it sits Island Lake Lodge and beautiful Island Lake. Several of the runs can be skied right to the door of the lodge!
Your Cat Skiing Day
The lodge is at the elevation of 4600 ft. The skiing starts as high as 7000 ft. The Island Lake experience includes breathtaking bowls, exciting tree runs or gentle rolling slopes with a variety of aspects and pitches. The ski day generally consists of 8-12 runs, approx. 12,000-15,000 vertical feet depending on the ability level of each group. Breakfast starts at 7am in the Tamarack Dining Room. You will be on the mountain from approximately 9:00am to 4:00pm. After skiing, there will be après-ski in the Bear Lodge bar then dinner at 7:30pm.
Geisha Bowl can be viewed front and center from the decks of the Lodge. Behold the splendour of one of our largest bowls and some of the world’s best backcountry skiing! Spanning from the dramatic Spineback Ridge to Faceshots Bowl, it might take weeks for a person to ski all the lines and years to learn all it’s intricacies! Photos of Scott Schmidt and Craig Kelly on classic lines in Tua East, Holy Land and Snowboard Heaven were made famous back in the day.
Hunters Bowl and The Bears
The Three Bears are some of the most recognizable peaks from Island Lake Lodge. They also provide very memorable skiing experiences. From the highest drop offs at Island Lake Cat Skiing, ski to the depths of the Cedar Valley for 3000 feet of vertical. Alpine bowls leading into perfectly gladed old growth forests make for magical runs. Some of the classic lines are Upper Hunters, Thirst Quencher, Nonstop and Stump Fluff.
Cabin Bowl marks the east boundary of the Island Lake ski terrain in the Lizard Range. With great views down the valley and of “Orca Rock”, this is the place to drop a few crazy chutes, catch some good tree skiing or ski to the valley floor when conditions are right! Classic lines include Cabin Drop to Cabin Corner or the skier’s right side of Aunt Matilda’s.
Lizard Pass and Wolverine
Northwest of the Lodge is Lizard Pass and the Wolverines. They provide a variety of skiing options from steep trees and long run outs, to a boot hike up Wolverine Three. Little Woody, Moraine and Siko Bowl are some of the classic lines that won’t be forgotten!
Faceshots is two drainages west of the Island Lake Lodge. In the beginning, there were those that said: “You will never get a cat road up that bowl”. We proved them wrong and regularly get great face shots! Ski over a bear den on the classic Faceshots Left line.
Mt Baldy - Front & Back Side
Baldy Front Side offers some of the best storm skiing at Island Lake, while bright sunny days offer incredible views. Run after run of ridgelines and glades can be had from the three peaks. With close to 2000 vertical feet, many runs ski right to the backdoor of the Bear Lodge. How about ending the day with Beer Run and a cold one at the base! Other classic lines include Sunny Side, Swiss Ridge and Sore Foot. North facing Baldy Backside is best known for its steep lines and cold powder. More than one guest has asked to sit out after looking out the door of the cat on the summit of North Baldy and seeing the pick up between their toes almost 2000 vertical feet below!
Mt. Fernie is the pride of our glading program; “The best tree spacing for skiing found anywhere” is often heard. Great skiing can be found on the north side of the mountain in the “cold high” and on the longer south facing runs with almost 3000 vertical feet on Hot Tub Chutes. Try some of the classics like 5 Star, Hot tub Chutes, Telifun and Tres Hombres!