Fernie and Fernie Alpine Resort Winter Season
Fernie is our first favourite…
Like many skiers/boarders in Fernie during the winter, you’re driving here from Calgary. Just 3 hours away makes it easy enough to travel to after the Friday work day, so arriving late may be an unavoidable situation. If you’re coming for the sole purpose of catching some pow at the resort, you may choose to drive straight to the resort to settle into your ski in/ski out accommodations and while there are some places to dine on mountain, choosing to stop in town can provide you with a fun experience and the opportunity to spend time in one of the most authentic ski towns in North America.
401 2nd Ave.
Simply put, the Brickhouse has delicious food and good beer. With a kitchen open until around 10/10:30pm you can grab your later at night meal here and not have to give any sacrifice to taste. With healthy and hearty options to choose from, it also focuses on local, organic ingredients and even has some pleasant surprises like the Nut Free Grilled Chicken Pesto Sammy, conveniently listed as nut free on the menu, a huge bonus for people with food allergies (like me).
641, 2nd Ave.
Just down the street from The Brickhouse (literally), is one of the town’s favourite bakeries which doubles as a delicious restaurant, you can pop in to buy baked goods/bread for a snack – or there a few tables to sit down and order off their menu, providing a great spot for breakfast, lunch, dinner or Après (they’re a licensed facilities with $5 happy hour)!
Blue Toque Café
601 1st Ave, in Arts Station
Slightly off the beaten path you might not notice it because it isn’t located on 2nd ave or 7th Ave. Blue Touque is located in the Arts Station (1st ave). Their corporate and mission statement, as written on the blackboard above their coffee bar reads “good eats & a cup of joe”, a simply and meaningful statement. Preparing everything from the freshest of states, you will feel full and happy after tasting something off their hearty and very vegan/vegetarian gluten free friendly menu. This quaint café is on the smaller side, but if you’ve found yourself waiting for a table just put your name down on the list and occupy yourself by taking in the art that decorates the hall walls.
Eating On Mountain
NEW Cirque Restaurant & Ice Bar
Located in Lizard Creek Lodge
This is one to add to your Fernie food bucket list for sure! Cirque is the new restaurant and bar in Lizard Creek Lodge, home to the iconic fireplace it recently underwent a gorgeous renovation, making the new great room a comfortable and trendy place to enjoy breakfast, lunch, dinner or après drinks. Plus, Cirque is home to the new Ice Bar presented by Stoli, whether you are a vodka connoisseur our not this is one experience not to miss! Get donned in provided Helly Hansen parkas and enter the Ice room (literally a room made out of ice) to taste the world’s finest vodkas the way they were meant to be enjoyed, in sub zero temperatures and learn about them too!
Located in the Fernie Alpine Resort plaza
The Griz Bar has been an icon of Fernie Alpine Resort since it opened under its original name, Fernie Ski Valley, in fact it’s been ‘keepin rippers ripped since 1962”. Being one of the hottest spots for Apres, it has indoor and outdoor seating, an infamous table and a wonderfully simple menu (nachos and beer) and is often featuring local bands for live après entertainment. Darcy has been running the Griz Bar for years and is the brain child behind the NEW ‘peak to pint’ challenge, read more about Darcy on Fernie Alpine Resort’s Facebook page and find out more about the Griz Bar on the website.
Eat too much? Don’t worry , there’s a run (or two) for that!
Words & Photos by Cali Sammel
Wondering what else there is to do in Fernie? Check out “The Top 7 Things to Do this Winter While Visiting Fernie“
Grom Snowboard (15 and under)
1st: Jordan Webber
2nd: Stone Fichter
Men’s Snowboard (16 and over)
1st: Richard Hoeksena
2nd: John Graham
3rd: Luke Meeds
1st: Evy Conn
Grom Ski (15 and under)
1st: Sam Goodison
2nd: Kale Wenzlawe
3rd: Shaw Miles
Men’s Ski (16 and over)
1st: Brayden Detta
2nd: Jessy Collings
3rd: Erik Halliwell
1st: Ivy Wright
2nd: Nell Smith
3rd Amy Shipley
Congratulations to everyone!
Thanks to all of our volunteers, competitors and sponsors for participating!!
Fly & ski in one day! With the new Integra Air service from Calgary International Airport (YYC) to the Canadian Rockies International Airport (YXC) 6 times each week starting this month! Get more information, the schedule or book your flight from the Integra Air website.
Want us to do all the work for you? Give one of our reservation agents a call at 1-800-258-7669 to book your flight, hotel and tickets all at once!
1. Get Fit
It’s on everyone’s list! Did you know that you can burn more than 350 calories per hour just by skiing or boarding? Make the healthy choice and get out on the hill more often this year!
2. Improve your skills and perfect your powder turns
Our Winter Sports School offers a great variety of programs for everyone from beginners to experts, kids and adults. Steep and Deep Camps, Learn to Ski/Snowboard, Kid’s Adventure Camps, Specialized Coaching and so much more! Check out http://skifernie.com/rentals-lessons/telus-winter-sports-school/ for a full list of the programs available.
3. Make new friends
Start a conversation with your fellow lift riders. Who knows? You might find a new riding buddy or carpool companion!
4. Get ready for the backcountry
We offer an area to practice your beacon searching skills on the hill (take the White Pass chair to Upper Heartland and follow the signs). Avalanche Awareness Day at FAR is Saturday, January 16th; Come and learn from the Fernie Ski Patrol about staying safe this winter. Outfit yourself with a selection of avalanche safety gear at the Sports Alpine Retail Shop. Take an avalanche course through College of the Rockies or other local course providers.
5. Ski new hills
Fernie Alpine Resort is located on the Powder Highway, with lots of ski hills to be found nearby. Check out our sister resorts: Kimberley Alpine Resort, Kicking Horse Mountain Resort and Nakiska Ski Area for a great variety of terrain.
6. Upgrade your gear
Pick up a new pair of goggles, an extra jacket or a better base layer. We offer a selection of soft and hard goods at Sports Alpine Retail Shop. You can also demo some of our High Performance gear from the rental shop to help you make an informed decision on your next big purchase.
7. Pamper yourself
The Spa at Lizard Creek Lodge offers a full menu of spa treatments and massages. Finish off the evening with a fine dining experience at Cirque Restaurant. Head to http://lizardcreek.com/ for more information.
8. Try something new
There are many on-snow activities available at Fernie Alpine Resort. Head to the rental shop to try fat biking, grab a pair of snow shoes or cross-country skis and hit the trails. http://skifernie.com/rentals-lessons/rentals/
9. Get first tracks
Be the first ones up the chairlift and carve the fresh snow with our First Tracks program. Register by 4:45 the night before, and you can leave your trail for everyone else to be jealous of.
10. Experience True Après Ski
Head up to the Legendary Griz Bar for a pint with your friends after the last run of the day, or visit the new Ice Bar at Lizard Creek Lodge for an exclusive Vodka tasting experience.
Written by Jordan Johnson
Photos: Robin Siggers, Nick Nault, FAR Patrol, Kimberley Alpine Resort, Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, Nakiska Ski Area, Jordan Johnson
At Fernie Alpine Resort, we realize that a lot of our guests are locals, as well as from the surrounding cities. With our guests travelling from out of town in mind, we’re excited to debut a groundbreaking program in the ski industry – the Sunday late check out. This winter, if staying in Lizard Creek Lodge or Fernie Slopeside Lodge at Fernie Alpine Resort you won’t have to check out until 2pm! Giving you and your family the time needed to get in a couple more runs, finish up that ski school program or just relax a bit before having to jump in your car to head home.
The holidays are just around the corner and Fernie Alpine Resort has a jammed packed Holiday Events & Activities schedule to keep those spirits high!
Santa is coming to Fernie Alpine Resort
December 23rd & 24th – Join Santa on the slopes before he heads back to the North Pole. Santa will be on the hill skiing each day from 10am – 12pm and then he will head into the base to take photos in the Daylodge from 12pm-2pm. The event is FREE and open to all ages!
More details: http://skifernie.com/events/ski-photos-with-santa/
Griz Kidz Holiday Evenings
Attention all kids ages 6-12, join us over the holiday period for our annual Griz Kidz evenings. Parents drop your kids off from 6:30pm – 8:00pm for some supervised holiday fun including Craft Nights, Movie Nights and Games nights. All evenings are FREE of charge and are open to ages 6-12. Pre-registration is required and parents can register their kids at Guest Services prior to 5pm on the day.
The Griz Kidz Holiday schedule is as follows:
Dec. 20th – Griz Kidz Activity Night – GAMES NIGHT
Dec. 21st – Griz Kidz Movie Night – CHRISTMAS CARTOONS
Dec. 22nd – Griz Kidz Crafty Kids Night – CHRISTMAS CRAFTS
Dec. 26th – Griz Kidz Movie Night – “HOME ALONE” MOVIE
Dec. 27th – Griz Kidz Activity Night – GINGERBREAD HOUSE DECORATING
Dec. 28th – Griz Kidz Crafty Kids Night – HOLIDAY CRAFTS
Dec. 30th – Griz Kidz Movie Night – “MINIONS” MOVIE
Jan. 2nd – Griz Kidz Activity Night – GAMES NIGHT
For more information on any of the evenings please check out the event calendar listings: http://skifernie.com/events-calendar/
Relax and enjoy some family time on Christmas day as we take care of the cooking! Head out for a few turns on the slopes and then join us in the brand new Cirque Restaurant at Lizard Creek Lodge for Brunch and Dinner. The Cirque’s floor to ceiling mountain views and 2 beautiful river rock fireplaces make for the perfect atmosphere to spend Christmas Day. Brunch seatings are from 9am – 1:30pm and Dinner Seatings are from 4:00pm – 8:30pm. Reservations are required. For prices, more details and how to reserve check out: http://skifernie.com/events/cirques-christmas-day-brunch-dinner-buffet/
New Year’s Eve
Fernie Alpine Resort is the place to be to ring in 2016. Join us for one of many celebrations:
Family New Year’s Eve – 6pm – 9pm
Come out and celebrate the new year with the entire family! Join us from 6pm-9pm for a variety of FREE family activities in the base area and Mighty Moose. The night culminates with a fireworks display on the Mighty Moose at 9pm. For more information: http://skifernie.com/events/family-new-years-eve/
Griz Bar New Year’s Eve Party – 8pm – 1am
Ring in the new year at the hottest party in Fernie. Join us at our legendary Griz Bar as we celebrate the start of 2016 with a toast at midnight, dancing and a live music from our favorite NYE Band the Todd Sellecks! 19yrs+ party and tickets are required (Please note tickets are now sold out). Details: http://skifernie.com/events/griz-bar-nye-party/
Cirque New Year’s Eve Dinner and Dance – 5pm – 1am
The brand new Cirque Restaurant and Ice Bar at Lizard Creek Lodge is hosting a New Year’s Eve Dinner and Dance Party and is sure to be a spectacular event not to be missed! All guests will be treated to a four-course dinner menu and dance party, with a glass of bubbly for the adults, as we bring in the New Year Cirque style! Reservations required – for prices and reservation details please check out http://skifernie.com/events/cirques-nye-dinner-dance-party/
Experience the magic of a horse-drawn sleigh ride at Fernie Alpine Resort this holiday season! Sleigh rides are available daily from Dec. 20 to Jan. 3. Afternoon sleigh rides run from 12:00pm – 5:30pm and an “Evening Sleigh Ride & Dinner Package” option is available from 5:30pm – 7:00pm. Sleigh rides are about 30min in duration and can be booked at Guest Services. For more information visit guest services or for more information check out the poster here
Night Skiing – December 26th – January 2nd
From December 26th to January 2nd – join us for Night Skiing on the Mighty Moose lift and run every day from 4pm – 9pm. Lift tickets are required and can be purchased in the rental shop. Tickets from the day time are valid for Night Skiing.
Kids Christmas Ski Camps – December 28th to January 1st
A fun filled week, with top quality instruction from our specialist children instructors. Focusing on skill development, fun and activities. Scavenger hunt on mountain, costume day and BBQ on Friday, obstacle course, slalom race and more. Open to ages 6-12. Register at the Winter Sports School Desk in Guest Services or call 250-423-2406
Snow shoeing & Cross Country Skiing
If downhill skiing or snowboarding isn’t your style, hit the trails around the resort on your Snow Shoes or Cross Country Skis.
Snow Shoe and Cross Country Ski Maps can be found here: http://skifernie.com/the-mountain/guides-maps/trail-maps/
Don’t have the gear? We rent snow shoes and cross country skis in our rental shop!
Guided snow shoe tours and cross country ski lessons are also available – book at our Winter Sports School Desk in Guest Services or call 250-423-2406
Winter Fat Biking
Always wanted to bike in the winter time? New this winter our rental shop has 8 Scott Winter Fat Bikes to rent! Rental rates and details can be found here: http://skifernie.com/rentals-lessons/rentals/rental-rates/
Winter bikes are not allowed on the mountain but are allowed on our cross country trail network and we are currently working with the Fernie Trails Alliance to have a loop in the base area. Visit Guest Services for further information and maps.
In Hollywood they say there’s no business like show business, and in Fernie we say there’s no business like snow business. And when we say business, we mean business. No matter what type of rider you are, we’ve put together a secret little list of tips for you to steal and use this season straight from the best source, our staff and locals. So, steal this list and find places on the mountain to explore you might never have known existed, find some of the best scenery Fernie offers or cruise down the longest run for a relaxing ride down. So pick up your trail map from the resort or download it from the Mountain Stats section on our website, find these runs and have the best day at Fernie of your life!
#2 – Black
Morning Glory [in Siberia Bowl] has great morning light, a good pitch and nice tree spacing. Looking for those powder stashes and untouched spots on the mountain? Look no further than Morning Glory for the best chance!
Mama Bear or Papa Bear
#118, 119 – Double Black
For some of the most amazing view you can image, ride the Polar Peak lift (the newest lift at Fernie Alpine Resort) to the summit. Start above the clouds and descend to get to the sunshine, enjoy amazing view and ride a huge vertical on your way down. There are also 2 blue runs off Polar Peak – try Polar Coaster (#124) or Polar Circus (#125) for an easier way down. As Powder Matt likes to say “this one works better than a strong cup of coffee to get that heart pounding fun going on!
#93 – Double Black
Mother Nature presented Fernie with an interesting problem at Corner Pocket. Corner Pocket (in Lizard Bowl) is a tight entrance to steep chutes, being a high wind area the snow was often blown away. About 10 years ago, Fernie’s ski patrol came up with an idea – tires! Hauling tires across the mountain to this hidden spot one a time patrol finally was able to create a system to get to the steeps without ruining the bottom your of your skis. Climbing here you’ll find some of the best powder at the resort!
#93 – Double Black
Currie Bowl, home to the popular Sky Dive run, is loved by the more extreme rider, drop into Currie for some of the best steeps on the mountain (but we didn’t tell you that). “I love Currie bowl for many different reasons. The famed Currie rope drop, the whole Concussion zone and Alpha Centari just to name a few. But the main reason is it accesses the Big 3. For me there is no better situation at Fernie Alpine Resort than being the first track down Skydive on a pow day. Top to bottoming that beast is the best feeling in the world. You definitely deserve some Griz Bar pints after picking off all 3!”
– Kieran Summers, Owner Giv’Er Shirtworks
#49 – Black
Arguably the favourite bowl at Fernie Alpine Resort, Lizard is great for the thrill seeker. Home to the locals’ favourite area Easter Bowl, Lizard is also the location of the Headwall. “The lizard bowl is like falling for the girl in the hot miniskirt and realizing she’s as kind as the girl next door”
– Tyler, Fernie Ski Patrol
Surprize and Shaky Acres
#98 – black, #13 – Blue
You’ll be hard pressed to find a rider who doesn’t love Surprize. Located in Timber Bowl, surprise is laden with challenging terrain coming in through the trees but also has some slightly easier and wide open spots (like Shaky Acres). This bowl accommodates almost any skier/rider (plus you get to show off your skills for all those on the chairlift as you pass below) and everyone likes a show off, right?
Snake Main & Glades
#82 & 82A – Black
Cedar Bowl is another local favourite with lots of natural rollers and fall lines, providing amazing vista’s and views. End your day at the Snake Ridge area, where the snow is known to be some of the deepest at the resort. Snake Ridge stays freshest the longest and you can get in some great long laps!
Need to look any of these spots up? View and download our trail map online.
See you out here!
The RCR Rockies Card
The Best Deal in the Rockies
It’s simple – buy the card at a low cost and save all ski season long! Purchase a discount card online, by calling 1-800-258-7669 or through one of the retailers listed below – don’t forget to purchase yours before they go off sale on December 26th!
- 3 FREE Days
- 4 Great Resorts
- Up to $30 daily savings
- Direct to lift option
- FREE Kids Card (with purchase of adult)
The RCR Rockies Cards are only on sale until December 26th! Don’t miss out!
For more information and to buy online visit the RCR Webstore.
Also available at;
- Sport Chek
- Calgary Co-op
- Ski Cellar
- Ski West
- Gerick Sports
- Out of Bounds
Today kicked off another great season at Fernie Alpine Resort and continuing with a long standing tradition (15 years!), Greg aka G-Money camped out at the resort in order to be first in line to be first on the lift and first off the lift to take the sweet initial turns of the winter.
Greg ‘G-money’ in known in the community, not just for nabbing first chair each recent ski season, but also for owning Edge of the World, a popular board shop located on 2nd ave in the town of Fernie. So just how did this tradition for Greg begin? In his own words…
15 years ago…
He [Barrow] had pitched a tent at the bottom of the Timber chair the night before Opening Day. He wanted to be on the first chair of the season. The security guard told him to camp in the designated camping area. Barrow started negotiating.
“I can’t get first chair from up there.”
“You’re gonna camp for first chair?” the guard asked.
“Yeah,” Barrow replied. “Well, can I stand here?”
“Yes,” the security guard said. “But you can’t camp here.”
“He goes: ‘I am not gonna call my boss at 2 in the morning and wake him up because some fool is trying to camp.’
“So, I just went and put my tent in the car and then went back and stood there.”
Read the full story on the Globe & Mail website.
These days, we allow Greg to camp out in hopes of getting first chair, anyone who has that type of dedication and love for a sport deserves it! That’s what we think anyways.
Here’s Greg on first chair last season (2014)
You get the idea…
We’ll be officially open for the season this Friday, December 4th! Fernie has received 116 cm of snow season to date, with 14 cm of that coming in the last 7 days, currently the settle snowpack at the Bear Plot is at 67 cms. Lifts operating starting Friday, will include the Elk Chair, the Bear Chair and the Mighty Moose. These lifts will provide over 2,500’ of vertical skiing, with skiing on the Bear to mid mountain, and down the Lizard run to the base. We currently have very good coverage with loose packed and machine groomed terrain/snow, it will be a great opportunity to get out and get your ski legs going in advance of the full mountain opening! There will be a variety of on mountain services which will be open from Friday, including the Daylodge, Griz Bar, Sports Alpine Retail Shop, Rental Shop and Guest Services. The new Cirque Restaurant & Lounge at Lizard Creek Lodge, will officially open with the start of the new season, make sure that you drop by to experience Fernie’s newest and best food & beverage experience.
FERNIE ALPINE RESORT OPENS DECEMBER 4TH AT 9AM