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Family Winter Time In Fernie

Live your best family life on a snow-packed adventure in beautiful Fernie.

Fernie is an outdoor-lovers dream at any time of the year, and there are lots of free or inexpensive activities for the family to enjoy without breaking the bank. Fernie’s winter is long and snowy, with new snow often falling well into April. Milder temperatures arrive mid-February making the outdoors great for family fun! 

Nordic (cross-country) skiing is a great activity for the whole family from age 2 to 92! Enjoy the gentle easy trails at the Fernie Golf Course or head to the picturesque Elk Valley Nordic Centre for added challenges. Both of these locations are Nordic-only, so you can enjoy the pristine grooming all to yourselves. Gear rentals are available from a number of locations, and the Cast Iron Grill at Fernie Golf Course is a lovely spot to warm up after your ski.

If you have a four-legged friend to bring along or one (or more) of the family prefers snowshoes or pedal power on a fatbike, the multi-use trails at Montane, Fernie Alpine Resort and the Cedar and Old Growth Trail to Island Lake Lodge offer a wide selection of smooth, level grooming and challenging steeps, and there’s even a scenic warming hut to enjoy at the Western end of the Montane Trail System. Fatbike rentals are available The Guides Hut, and Gearhub Sports in downtown Fernie, and Quest Fall Line Sports and Sports Alpine Rental at Fernie Alpine Resort.

Everybody loves a waterfall, and Fairy Creek Falls are just as beautiful draped in white as they are at any other time of the year. Take the gentle 2km trail from the Fernie Visitor Information Centre and enjoy this lovely location. Snowshoes are usually only required after a large snowfall as this trail is popular and packs down quickly, although hiking poles are always a good idea. Stay well back from the falls as the base area is an avalanche deposit zone for Mt Proctor.

One of Fernie’s newest outdoor features is the NHL-sized Outdoor Skating Rink next to the Fernie Aquatic Centre. Free skating is offered daily – check the online calendar for details. Skate rentals and sharpening are available at Gearhub.

If you prefer someone else to do the hard work or if the weather isn’t co-operating for outdoor skating, check out a Fernie Ghostriders Home Game at the Fernie Memorial Arena and see schedules for public indoor skate times.

An afternoon of tobogganing is a fun way for the family to get outdoors and burn off some steam. The hill behind the Dirt Jump Park - located adjacent to the Fernie Aquatic Centre is a popular spot.

When it’s time to cool off or if you get a little chilly, head indoors for a splash in the pool – there’s a giant hot-tub, steam room, 2 water slides, a wading pool and regular sessions with the pool toys including giant inflatables.

For the ultimate winter treat, visit Island Lake Lodge on a Snowcat Ride & Lunch adventure. There’s plenty of time to snowshoe around the spectacular frozen lake, or perhaps leave a deserving family member to be pampered at the Spa (additional costs apply) while the kids romp through the snow. Snowcat & lunch packages are offered Thursday – Sunday throughout the winter. $79 for adults, kids aged 4-11 are half price and 0-3 year olds are free! Make sure to call ahead and book your seats as spaces are limited. 250-423-3700. Snowshoe rentals are $10, or bring your own.

Historic Downtown Fernie is the hub of town with great dining and cosy coffee stops, unique shops and attractions. Check the Events Calendar for Cultural Saturday listings for kids and adults at The Arts Station, or Storytime, Ukulele lessons and activity sessions at the Fernie Heritage Library.

The Fernie Museum is a fascinating treasure trove of heritage and legends – Fernie’s modern history is short at around 130 years, but lots has been packed into those years, and the Ktunaxa have called this area their homeland for over 10,000 years. A series of challenges and even a coal mining tunnel will keep little ones occupied while you explore. Open 10am - 5:30pm, 360 days.

Check out the latest movies at the Vogue Theatre, with afternoon matinees on weekends and even a video arcade available for groups if you’re planning a party in town. At Beanpod you can see fresh chocolate being prepared from scratch and learn about the bean-to-bar process.

Of course, no winter activity list would be complete without a mention of Fernie Alpine Resort! From Polar Peak at 7050' to the Plaza Base Area, there’s over 2500 acres of incredible skiing to enjoy including daily-groomed wide, gentle green and beginner runs, all-mountain blues, steep and deep blacks plus 5 alpine bowls and gladed tree skiing that will keep the whole family happy for as long as you can stay. 

Still on-mountain, there’s a wide range of dining options, boutique gear shopping and rentals, childcare facilities and live entertainment at the Griz Bar and Rusty Edge. The Winter Sports School offers a huge selection of lessons and camps including First Tracks for early birds and nightly dining-and-activity options. See calendar for details.

The Mighty Moose tow-lift keeps spinning for late evening laps on Saturdays. When you're ready for a break, warm up by the Slopeside Cafe fire, or enjoy dinner and drinks at the Rusty Edge - the view of the slopes mean you can easily keep an eye on your littles while you relax. 

Check our Events Calendar for fantastic family-friendly events including throughout the winter, including Griz Kidz Winter Fun at Fernie Alpine Resort, Ghostrider Hockey Games, Griz Days in March, Nordic Ski Races, an amazing Fernivial closing weekend extravaganza at Fernie Alpine Resort featuring free live entertainment, the Slopesoaker, Powder, Pedal, Paddle Relay Race, and much more!

Add the charming small-town atmosphere, friendly locals, and great family dining options and you’ve got the recipe for a great family vacation. See the daily & weekly dining specials page to help your budget go a little further. Check out all the places to stay including the latest Fernie hotel and lodging deals and start planning your trip today!

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