Articles about Fernie and Fernie Alpine Resort Summer
June 19, 2017
Let’s get ready to Rumple…. stumpskin that is! With the road to the top of the Timber chair now free of snow, crews were able to go exploring on our upper elevation trails this week. After a little bit of work tree falling and debris clearing we can now advise that Rumple, TNT, Bike Thief, and Neverland will be open top to bottom next weekend. Riders can expect to encounter a few snowy patches and early season conditions on the upper mountain trails. Last year’s new BC Cup line on Bike Thief, and the section of TNT that was closed last year for Lift Maintenance work on the White Pass Chair will re-open for this season.
And in the other corner, all Elk Side trails are also great contenders for Opening Day. Crews have been taking care of a few last minute projects and buffing out all your favorite rides this week. With close to fifty hiking and biking trails on the mountain, this is a huuuuuge task for our crew. We’ve been focusing on our heavy weight trails (Top Gun, Eville, Duff Dynasty, Bin Logdin, Deer Trail, Hollow Tree…) and are working our way through to those which receive a little less traffic. Fortunately, many of our trails, like Bin Logdin and Duff Dynasty, just needed a little tree falling, drainage clean-out, and a quick fan rake to get rid of the blow down debris.
Riders can expect great conditions on the Elk Side trails with newly worked berms and jumps perhaps riding a little soft on opening day. Take a few slow, warm-up inspection laps your first few rides to re-familiarize yourself with the lay of the land and some of the new changes in place this season.
The clock is ticking away with only five days left before lifts start spinning. Back to work!
FAR Trail Crew
‘Ralph Waldo Emerson (Poet) once asked what we would do if the stars only came out once every thousand years. No one would sleep that night, of course. The world would become religious overnight. We would be ecstatic, delirious, made rapturous. Instead the stars come out every night, and we watch television.’
-Paul Hawken (environmentalist/activist)
Luckily we don’t have to wait 1000 years to enjoy the night sky view. This summer, don’t watch tv, don’t scroll all night through Instagram and don’t stay indoors. Get outdoors and sleep the closest you can get to the stars at Fernie Alpine Resort’s quintessential mountain top camping experience.
You’ve heard of camping. And you’ve likely heard of glamping (glamorous camping). Well at Fernie Alpine Resort, we’ve taken camping/glamping to whole new heights – by putting it at the top of the mountain! That’s right – up your camping game this summer by riding the Timber Chair at Fernie Alpine Resort to the (timber bowl/lost boys café) for a camping experience unlike any other, in fact, the first lift serviced camping available in North America!
Your unique camping experience starts at 4:00 pm at base of the Timber Chair, then it’s up the lift to your camping area to set up your campsites (hosts are available to assist). After a guided hike you’ll enjoy a raclette dinner at Lost Boys Cafe followed by S’mores by the campfire. The next morning after breakfast at Lost Boys Cafe and camp clean up make your way back down the chairlift or feel free to explore the mountain more by hiking and sightseeing. The whole trip is topped off with some of the most amazing views of the Elk Valley, don’t forget to Instagram the images to create all the FOMO for all your followers!
But you don’t have to take our word for it, take this guests’ word instead!
‘We had a great time “glamping” at Fernie Alpine resort. Well organized, beautiful views, excellent food, interesting short hikes and wonderful company. The fondue dinner was really delicious and coffee and drinks on the deck at Lost Boys Café with a fire and view over Elk Valley made a perfect end of the day. It was a very easy way to get a great camping experience, enjoy the wildlife and still have the luxury of having access to very good comfort and cooked meals. We have recommended the experience to all our friends and we believe this will turn out to be one of the “musts” to do when visiting Fernie.’
Book your mountain top camping experience now!
June 11, 2017
Your home resort is always a special place. Especially when you can share it with a few thousand of your summer friends – new and old. Our Trail Crew is as diverse as our guest list these days; full of various backgrounds, abilities, and goals. We’ve all invested a little of ourselves into spring trail work this year hoping to provide a well-rounded product for everyone on opening day.
This week the focus has remained on some of our Elk Side artery trails and we have even been able to push our opening day portfolio higher up the Timber Side. Will Power – one of FAR’s original bike trails built before disc brakes, suspension, wide bars, or 27.5/29 inch wheels – picked up some substantial tree removal from the insides of the corners on the upper trail. Some of the smaller corners have been re-cribbed and filled back up to help maintain flow. We snuck the mini back into upper Mr. Berms to transplant some soil and re-shape the first right hand corner in the trees. Same goes for the Rockstar Tree Island (just above the Timber Chair Load) which also received several loads of imported fresh soil. Heavy snow load over the winter collapsed bridges on Alternate Flight Pattern and Honey Bee so those were jacked up and repaired. There is also a little work in progress on the ski run sections of Ben’s Big Rig to get those green corners back into shape for bike season.
With the snowline steadily creeping up the mountain we are now also able to offer Rumplestumpskin, Neverland, and TNT from Trespass Trail elevation to base and will likely also be able to throw Bike Thief on that list as well. While these trails will be clear of major hazards such as trees, large rocks, and washouts they will not have much fine tuning for opening weekend – be patient – we’ll get to them!
Last but not least, we have a little news to share! After our regular summer operation closing date on Sunday, September 3rd, we will be opening for
TWO BONUS WEEKENDS!!
So plan to come for some extra hiking & biking on Timber Chair on September 9 & 10 and September 1 6 & 17!
Our Trail Crew has set up an email address for you to share any ideas, concerns, or thoughts with us through the season. If you have an immediate safety concern, please let Patrol know by calling us at 250-423-2426 so we can take care of it right away. For everything else, feel free to chat with us in person at your leisure or send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Catch you in a lucky 13 days Loam Rangers.
-The FAR Trail Crew
Photos by Nicole Matei
Rise and Shine, it’s nearly Legendary Summer time!
Our initial attack crews have been on the trails for one week now surveying the spring melt and starting to buff out some of your favourite rides. The snowline is still quite low on the mountain promising a delayed upper Timber-side bike trail opening this year but we are looking in good shape for a full Elk and lower Timber opening for June 24th, 2017.
This week Top Gun has had a total machine rebuff from top to bottom. We have also rebuilt a few nagging corners on mid-Mr. Berms and the Deer Trail. The Saw Crew has been busy clearing downed trees and summer trail signs are starting to go up! We would like to remind public to stay off the resort trails until opening day as much of our work needs time to set up in addition to large amounts of industrial activity, such as tree falling and lift maintenance work, occurring across the mountain.
See you in a few short weeks!
FAR Trail Crew
CALLING ALL LOCAL ARTISTS
…Fernie Alpine Resort is looking for an Elk Valley artist to feature their artwork on one of our terrain park rail features. The artist will be part of a “Live Painting Event” on Saturday, June 24th in the main plaza. Interested artists must submit their concept sketch by Sunday, June 18th at 5pm (MST). A panel will decide the winning design and notify the artist by 5pm (MST) on June 19th. Full details on the application and submission parameters can be found below. The winning artist will receive a prize plus exposure opportunities.
For full details, click here
I didn’t discover mountain biking until my mid-twenties. While Fernie’s epic trail network, both in town and at Fernie Alpine Resort had yet to be developed in my youth, mountain biking has become such an integral part of Fernie it’s difficult to remember it any other way.
After graduating, the lure to come home was strong. I spent every possible moment in Fernie and noticed a big change during the summer months. Bikes… they were everywhere. I decided to take a friend up on an offer to go for a ride. That friend was Emily Brydon, and she decided Verboten was great way to start (a Black Diamond at the top of Red Tree Road just off the ski hill.) A group of us rode from Timberline Village, and I was mesmerized as we crossed bowls I had only seen on skis. This feeling quickly shifted to fear and defeat as we made our way down the technical trail.
A few years later, I moved home and decided to park my car and buy a mountain bike. It was 2006, and while I still had a tremendous amount of fear, I just couldn’t get it out of my head. I fell in with a fantastic group of women who supported and pushed me and were integral to me falling in love with the sport. In August of that summer, I watched in awe as rider after rider crossed the finish line of the TransRockies and thought… I’m going to do this one day. And I did.
While I love the accomplishment of finishing a race, I get the same feeling nearly every day riding in Fernie. Trail development and enhancement has meant new entry level and flow trails are available, along with more challenging and technical rides and everything in between. I love this about mountain biking. It allows everyone to test themselves whatever age, level or style of rider, and in turn can expose them to a side of themselves they may have long forgotten or didn’t know existed. The same goes for Fernie – it never saw itself as a summer destination, but mountain biking has sure shown us something different.
I bike a lot, from the first trails to show themselves in the spring, to the last trails to be covered in the fall. Typically during the week I stick to trails in town for the ease of a quick early morning or evening ride just out the door. A favourite loop is Hyperventilation to Hyper Extension, and slipping into Ridgemont to finish on Oh Dear if there’s time. But on any given Sunday I can be found in Mount Fernie Provincial Park, heading to Fernie Alpine Resort via Old Goat and Mega Hurtz or the newly revitalized Ben Emmett. From there, I catch a lift and laugh and giggle all the way down beautifully manicured trails like Duff Dynasty, Top Gun and Eville. And on the way home, I always climb my way to Verboten for the final descent, and remember how times have changed. For the better.
Fernie Alpine Resort was proud to honour 3 of our dedicated Mountain Hosts with long-term service awards this past winter. Glenn Sedgwick, Lyall Mahan and Wally Pfeifer have been 3 of the friendly faces that have been welcoming and assisting our guests for the past 25 years. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts and congratulations to Glenn, Lyall and Wally!
Meet our amazing volunteers, who are out there in all weather conditions helping visitors to enjoy their mountain experience to its fullest!
“We moved to Fernie in 1989 as a result of a 3 year loan assignment from the Calgary Imperial Oil office to Byron Creek Collieries. Like so many others we loved Fernie so much we decided to stay here and raise our boys. Skiing and the outdoors was a great attraction for us, so in 1991 I joined the Volunteer Ski Patrol (CSPS) at the Fernie ski hill, then known as Fernie Snow Valley. Things have changed a lot since those early days. The ski hill consisted of only the Lizard and Cedar Bowls. The pro-patrol was small, about 6 people and the CSPS were responsible for the majority of the first aid work on the weekends. The Bear T-bar and Facelift serviced the upper mountain. The only way out of Cedar bowl was Cedar trail. During this period I also coached minor hockey and baseball. My wife Jeanette was enjoying the Fernie Host program, so in early 2000’s I joined too. I enjoyed touring and helping guests and proudly showing off our great mountain. I still love being a host, meeting and greeting people and enjoying the comradery of the host crew and it provides a break from my normal day job. It is great to get out of the house, enjoy the fresh air and get a little exercise. Maybe once retirement kicks in, I will be able to spend more time on this great mountain. “
“I originally came from the Saskatchewan flatland (Melfort), served 10 years with the Canadian Air Force, and then moved to Hinton, Alberta. While living in Hinton I was introduced to skiing at Marmot Basin. We moved to Fernie in 1981 but I didn’t take skiing seriously until I retired from Shell’s Line Creek mine. Retirement was cut short when Heiko Socher recruited me to do maintenance at the Griz Inn Hotel. This ski environment jump started my enthusiasm for skiing. Volunteering as a ski ambassador while at the hotel and with the Mountain Host program has been a rewarding experience as I enjoy promoting our ski hill to guests from around the world. “
“I moved to the quaint little town of Fernie in May 1979. Before moving to Fernie, I merely skied a couple times, skiing behind a ski-doo on cross-country skis.
I seriously started to downhill ski when the three daughters were fairly young (ages 7 to 9 years old) when they joined the Nancy Greene Program which was in the mid-80’s. Around about the same time, I also joined the Mine Rescue at Westar Mining where I worked. In 1990, I joined the Canadian Ski Patrol Program. In that first weekend of Ski Patrol, I administered more first-aid than I had done in five years on the Mine Rescue Program at the mine. I continued with the Patrol Program until 1997 which credited me with 7 years of volunteering with them.
The following winter I joined the ski-host pro-gram & presently am still a ski-host. My 25 years of volunteering seemed to have gone by way too fast. The glory years of ski-hosting was when we inter-acted with the guest by giving them 4 hours of touring the mountain; 2 hours in the morning on the old side of the mountain and 2 hours on the new side of the mountain in the afternoon. You knew when you did a good job when you seen all the smiles on the guest’s faces. Many of the toured guests came back year after year, became friends and some even retired and moved here. And, now some of them are the ski-hosts.
I will continue with the ski-host program well into the future. Now, I am the Duty Host for our Thursday Group. Come and say Hi. Thanks!”
This summer will be the debut of an epic camping experience in British Columbia, the first of its kind in North America! Sleep among the stars and wake up to spectacular alpine views near the top of the Timber Chair and Fernie’s famous mountaintop restaurant, the Lost Boys Café.
Our camping package includes your lift ticket, campsite, guided hike, delicious raclette dinner, s’mores by the campfire, and breakfast. Top quality tents from Northface are also available to rent. Camping is offered on Saturday nights starting on July 16th!
Adult – $149.99*
Youth – $49.99*
Family (2 adults & up to 2 youth) – $349.99*
Children 5 & under are free
Northface tent rentals
Optional tent rental fee – $20*
Sizes available include –2, 3, 4 & 6 man
To book your Lost Boys Camping Experience, call 250-423-2435.
Your camping experience starts at 4:00 pm at base of the Timber Chair, then it’s up the lift to your camping area to set up your campsites (hosts are available to assist). After a guided hike you’ll enjoy a raclette dinner at Lost Boys Cafe followed by S’mores by the campfire. The next morning after breakfast at Lost Boys Cafe and camp clean up make your way back down the chairlift or feel free to explore the mountain more by hiking and sightseeing.
Photos by Nicole Matei
The lift accessed hiking at Fernie Alpine Resort offers a variety of gorgeous trails for various abilities with views that will make you want to whip out your camera at every corner, with hikes (guided also available) from easy, (great for the whole family including children) to advanced, (for experienced hikers ready for an all-day adventure).
NEW hiking stuff this summer at Fernie includes;
A new bridge on the Old Growth Magic Forest hiking trail, making the creek crossing easier – thank you to the Fernie Alpine Resort Trail Crew for keeping our feet dry!
A new trail! Be sure to check out “Skeleton Flats” – access via the Lizard Summer Road from the top of the Elk Chair. The trail then climbs up the Dancer ski run area to Easter, and then connects with the Lizard High Traverse to the top of the Bear Chair. Highlights include a wide, fairly smooth medium grade trail, fossil zones, alpine wildflowers, avalanche paths, and spectacular views of Lizard Headwall and the town of Fernie. Put this on your “Must Do” list this summer!
Visiting Fernie with the family? Try out the ‘Sib Ridge Lookout’ or ‘Summer Road’ trail. Both are lift accessed hikes with a steady however not overly steep ascent with opportunity for learning along the way with new interpretive signs. Don’t forget to check out the Lizard View Platform, access by the Summer Road hiking trail.
For a more difficult adventure, try the White Pass trail , you’ll observe rolling mountain views looking down into Currie Bowl or into Polar Peak in front of you. Or yet for an extreme challenge take the Polar Peak trail, this hike can’t last up to 7 hours and includes steeps where ropes have been installed to assist you in your climb. If you are experienced enough to try this route, your senses will thank you as you take in the seemingly endless mountain and town views.
What else is there to do in Fernie this summer? Aerial Park, Zipline, Biking and More! Click for more info.
New this summer in our rental shop, located in the Fernie Adventure Centre, we’ll have SCOTT Genius 750 cross country bikes available. To see the trails (marked in purple) surrounding the mountain check out our online trail map and for more information regarding trails around Fernie, B.C visit the Tourism Fernie website or the Fernie Mountain Bike Club’s website.