Articles about Fernie and Fernie Alpine Resort
The annual Brushing Program for the Fernie Ski Resort is having a very successful summer. The cooler weather and lower Fire Danger ratings have allowed the crew to keep working through the dog days of summer without restrictions due to Fire Danger. The crew this summer has also been doubled to allow us to catch up a little on the past couple seasons where High Fire Danger has shut us down or limited our progress. The crews have been hard at work in many areas across the mountain.
There has been a new line cut down Snake Ridge as well as cleaning a new line down the North Boundary for those that are looking for the Steep and Deep that Fernie is famous for.
Additionally, we have been working on core areas on the Lizard Side that focusses on terrain that is open at 9 am on most big snow days. The Sunny Side has had a new haircut that extends down onto the China Wall and old Griz Lift line that will provide some early deep turns on those Pow Days.
Boomerang and Boom Ridge has received another mow and will be prime for early season riding providing steep turns right out of the gate.
New Side lovers will also see some changes to the lines in the Alpha Centauries and Currie Chutes areas as well as the lower elevations of the Big Three as we cleaned up the exits from those thigh-burning runs. In addition, core areas around the Timber Bowl, Surprise, Black Cloud have all been touched.
Our Summer Mower Cat was rebuilt from a repurposed Snowcat this Spring and will be out in anger this fall to mow many of our main runs including all our beginner terrain on the lower mountain and runs where all the rocks and obstacles have been removed such as Bear, North Ridge, Kodiak, and many others.
It is a giant mountain, and we have excellent growing conditions. People ask why don’t you just cut it all? Sounds like a good idea but when you are standing at the bottom of Cedar Ridge looking up at acres of 12 foot high Alder, you start to feel pretty small. When you dive into Cedar Ridge early season and have that perfect line top to bottom down the King Fir don’t forget to think about that person that has spent their summer on the end of a saw making that possible.
We are looking forward to an awesome season.
There are many things in this world that we take for granted. The way that we move and our freedom to walk, run, ski and bike are undoubtedly some of them.
It’s not so hard.
Want to go skiing? Go.
Want to climb a mountain? Go.
Want to go downhill mountain biking? Go.
I have a question, what if you had no legs? Would the ‘go’ be as easy?
This past Saturday was International Ride MTB Day, and we had the honour of having Mack Adams, a shredder from the Elk Valley, spend the day with us here at Fernie Alpine Resort. Mack is an upbeat guy who is always keen for a chat and, ALWAYS keen to send it on the mountain with his friends.
You wouldn’t guess it to look at him, but Mack is a double amputee who lost both of his legs at ten months old due to a congenital birth defect. He hasn’t let that stop him.
At the age of 12, Mack learnt how to bike, using outriggers (adult training wheels), with the help of Mark Hall, owner of GearHub. He then tried his hand at dirt jumping but found that his true biking passion lay with downhill mountain biking.
So, once again, with the help of Mark from GearHub who loaned him a Rocky Mountain Maiden, on Saturday Mack was back up at our bike park, in the pouring rain, getting his laps in. At one point I asked him if he was doing ok. He answered, “Yeah, but my ankles are starting to hurt.” His friends told me that these kinds of jokes had been flying around all day. His stoke was high, he was having fun, and watching him do his thing was inspiring! What a great way to spend International Ride MTB Day.
Mack has a dream of riding every trail that we have in one weekend, and Fernie Alpine Resort is working with Mack to help him make it happen. He is also a keen basketballer, volleyballer and loves to play his guitar – basically, nothing will stop him once he has set his mind to it.
What a legend.
Downhill mountain biking in Fernie is exhilarating, and often breathtaking.
The downhill trails here at Fernie Alpine Resort are in prime condition and riding beautifully.
Come and check out what it’s all about, and advance your skills, in one of our mountain bike camps or lessons!
NEW! ADULT CO-ED DOWNHILL CAMPS
Are you comfortable on green & blue trails but want to develop your downhill riding skills? Join us for our new adult co-ed intermediate weekend camps – focusing on progression to more technical descents, roots, rocks, drops, jumps & obstacles. With small group sizes, our certified professional coaches will help take your riding to the next level. Camp includes 10 hrs of coaching over two days, lunch, lift tickets, and bike maintenance session. Ages 18+.
Dates: July 13 & 14 / August 10 & 11 Time: 10am – 4pm. Price: 2 day camp $229 / 1 day camp $139
WOMEN’S MOUNTAIN BIKE CAMPS
MTB designed by women for women! These camps are catered to various levels of riding ability and are led by qualified female instructors. Camps include skill sessions, bike maintenance, lift tickets, instructional trail rides and lunch.
Dates: July 13 & 14, 2019 / August 10 & 11, 2019
Time: 10am – 4pm
Price: 2 day camp $229 / 1 day camp $139
MOUNTAIN BIKE PRIVATE LESSONS
For the beginner or hardcore rider — have a lesson tailor-made to suit your skills! Rates are based on 3 people per lesson — price includes instruction only. Lift ticket is required. Participants receive a 20% discount on bike rentals for the day of their private lesson.
DISCOVER MOUNTAIN BIKING
Discover the thrill of Downhill Mountain biking under the expert guidance of one of our bike coaches. Learn the basics and gain confidence! Minimum 3 people per lesson and a maximum of 10 people per lesson. The clinic includes a 3-hour coaching session, 3-hour bike rental and 3-hour lift pass. Rates based per person. For ages 8+.
Days & Times: Saturdays, Sundays, Tuesdays & Thursdays from 10am-1pm
PEAK TO PARK TO PINT BIKE TOUR
Join us for a fun afternoon of biking! Starting from the top of the chairlift at Fernie Alpine Resort, cruising downhill to Mt Fernie Provincial Park and then pedalling through town to enjoy a refreshing sampling of East Kootenay beers! Includes guiding, lift ticket, and post-ride sampler drinks. Guests then have the option to take our complimentary shuttle back to the resort. Minimum 2 participants. Ages 19+.
Fridays & Saturdays
1:30 PM to 4:30 PM
Tail crew primarily spent this week on the Lizard Lane.
-On Monday, we finished all the machine work and began hand shaping.
-Tuesday & Wednesday were spent dialling in the shapes of features and hand packing.
-After Wednesday night’s rain, we spent Thursday repacking Duff Dynasty, Monorail, Case Closed and began packing on Mr. Berms.
-From Tuesday to Thursday we’ve had a machine in the Aggravated Assault Extension tree island. More info to come on this project over the next week!
See you on the trails!
Trail Crew 🚵
We have lots of exciting work going on at Fernie Alpine Resort this summer!
This year Trail Crew were able to start their work earlier than ever, and it has been very productive.
Our progress so far has included:
- A full rebuild of Monorail and lower Duff Dynasty
- We’ve finished all the machine work and shaping on upper Mr. Berms tree island (carrying on from where we left off last year)
- New squirrel catcher berms on upper Will Power
- The Lizard Lane is underway!
We’ll be doing weekly updates with a few teaser photos.
See you on the trails,
Summer is just around the corner, and we’re excited to have three amazing outdoor adventure camps to keep your kids entertained and having fun all day long!
Experienced camp counsellors & bike coaches are ready to fill your child’s day with action-packed adventures and exciting new knowledge that they just can’t wait to share with you!
This March 2,
In the 2018/19 winter season, the Emily Brydon Youth Foundation for the first time received more applicants than its budget allowed. It was a very eye-opening and
We are happy to announce that as of today, we have commitments totalling $500,000 towards the $1 Million
“I am inspired and humbled by the generosity of people and the trust they have in the foundation to ensure youth in the Elk Valley are provided equal opportunity to experience and chase their
The event created excitement and awareness of the campaign and its fresh brand, and what it could mean for the communities of the Elk Valley. Emily, along with the board members at EBYF are ready to grow and evolved to the next level. “Let’s enable new fundraising channels to meet the forever growing demand,” she added.
“The EBYF provides an essential platform to improve the lives and opportunity of youth in the Elk Valley. We are proud supporters!” Jay Zammit, Donor
“All of us at the EBYF are humbled by the generosity of the Fernie community. We are 50% of the way to our goal as we launch the Legacy Campaign. With the support of the Fernie community, we are confident we can meet and exceed our $1 million
“We are very proud to support this great Foundation! The kids in Fernie will now have a vibrant, consistent funding source to help achieve their dreams! Emily’s commitment to Fernie, kids, sports, excellence and community make the EBYF an exciting reality in funding these endeavours. Thanks to Emily and Rosemary for doing so much for Fernie and its kids.”Andy Cohen, Fernie Alpine Resort
For more information on the campaign or to donate, please visit theEmily Brydon Youth Foundation website.
When Claire Smallwood moved to Fernie last year, she brought with her a passion and drive to initiate opportunities for women and girls in the Elk Valley. In the USA, Claire co-founded SheJumps a non-profit
“What inspires me about my work with SheJumps is the chance to create opportunities for women and children who would normally have none, and to plant the idea that it is possible to live an adventurous and inspiring lifestyle, no matter who you are or where you come from.”Claire Smallwood, co-founder of SheJumps
On 25th March, Claire teamed up with Fernie Alpine Resort to bring the girls of Fernie the ‘SheJumps presents Wild Skills Jr. Ski Patrol’ event and it was a huge success! 4 professional patrollers, 6 passionate volunteers, and 32 incredibly stoked girls (8-17 years old).
Young girls learnt about mountain safety & First Aid while working with the strong women on Fernie ski patrol. Throughout the day girls were taught a range of outdoor skills that are utilized by ski patrollers to keep them safe on the mountain.
This was the first Jr. Ski Patrol event in Canada. It was exciting to see young girls excited about mountain safety and expose them to positive female role models in the local Fernie community. One participant said, “Today was the best day of my life.” Well, hard to top that!
We are very lucky to have Claire here in Fernie and look forward to working with her to provide ALL women and girls with the spark that will lead to a lifetime of outdoor learning and empowerment.
Ahh, Spring! The sun comes out, flowers start blooming, birds start singing. But hold on, there’s still so much fun to be had at Fernie Alpine Resort! So slap on some sunscreen, sport those sunglasses, slay some spring skiing, and get ready for one full-on spring activities blog!
Who doesn’t love spring skiing in a neon onesie? Why not take the opportunity to pull out those spandex leggings and sexy headbands and join us for Kokanee Retro Weekend! On March 30th we’re heading back to the ’80s in style, with a nonstop party that’ll leave you wanting to bust a move. Starting at 1:00pm to 5:30pm, join us in the plaza for the Kokanee Event Gardens, where DJ Rocswell will be spinning your favourite retro beats. If you’re like totally not done dancing, the legendary Griz Bar has you covered! From 8:00pm we’re bringing the Hot Tub Time Machine Tribute Celebrations, so you can party till you start saying “tubular” and “righteous”. Join us for the most radical blast to the past Fernie has to offer! Ok, we’re done with the ‘80s slang.
Continuing the ‘80s extravaganza on March 30th AND 31st, we’ve got one just for our epic snowboarders! Celebrating the freedom to ride after the days when snowboarders were outlaws, we’re bringing back the Dirty Dancer Banked Slalom, and it’s better than ever. You asked we delivered; this epic event is now happening over two days! The course runs through Dancer Gully in Lizard Bowl and is open to riders of all ages (intermediate riding level recommended). We have two types of categories available, an open category for any intermediate rider looking to give banked slalom a try, and a pro category for all you advanced riders. Categories are – Open Grom (14 and under), Open Youth (15 to 18), Open Adult (19 and up), Pro for Men and Women, and Pro Masters (40 and up). Helmets are cool, which is why we require each rider to sport one for the event. Registration is open and can be accessed by clicking here.
For some spectacular family fun, join us on April 6th for our Griz Kidz Winter Carnival presented by Telus. The plaza will be buzzing with some super cool games and activities for kids 12 and under. Activities include a special performance by Circus Kasai at noon, face painting with Keya and Rachel, balloon animals, arts and crafts, and carnival games. Activities start at 11:00am to 3:00pm and are absolutely FREE.
The final weekend of the season brings two ever famous crowd pleasers, Raging Elk Powder, Pedal, Paddle Relay and the Coca Cola Slope Soaker. On April 13th, join us for a tradition that goes all the way back to 1984. Teams of two to five people have the opportunity to get their competitive side on and ski, bike, paddle, and then run for the title of PPP Champion. This fun and intense relay race will be followed by a BBQ in the plaza, with epic tunes from our featured Fernival bands. Categories for the relay include Men’s Team, Women’s Team, Mixed Team (must have at least two females), and Family/Youth Team (must have at least two youth under 18 years old). Click here to check out the full details and rules.
On April 14th, end your season with a splash and join us for the Coca Cola Slope Soaker. Creative and crazy costumes are encouraged for this spectacular event, where participants can see if they have what it takes to ski or ride across our Slope Soaker pond. Extra prizes and points will be awarded for creative costumes, effort, crowd reaction, biggest splash and much more. But we didn’t stop there! All registered participants are entered in for awesome draw prizes from our amazing sponsors. So dive right in and check out all the details by clicking here.
And now for the event, you’ve all been waiting for, the biggest end of season celebration Fernie has to offer, Fernival is loud and proud and coming to you on April 13th and 14th! We’ve got two local Kootenay bands lined up for you on April 13th, punk rock legends The Runs, and the outstanding BCDC. At 2:00pm, rock out to the spectacular beats of The Runs, and then stick around till 3:30pm to check out BCDC. April 14th is a day you won’t want to miss because we’re sending off the season with Five Alarm Funk. Enjoy their intense arrangements and heavy groove, starting at 3:00pm. So bid farewell to the season with us by jamming out in the plaza to some awesome tunes and a party you won’t want to miss.
Well, in the words of someone famous, that’s all folks! Thank you for creating memories with us that will last a lifetime.
We’ll see you next season! Cheers!
They are the first people you see when arriving at the base area of Fernie Alpine Resort. With a smile on their face, and a bright and cheery hello, a Mountain Host is never too far away to hand out advice on what to do, where to ski, where to go for the best nachos in town – anything, they’ve got you.
There are 39 Mountain Hosts currently volunteering at FAR. Often referred to as a ‘dream job’ you will see them all over the mountain just waiting to help out a guest in need. On a busy day, there will be up to 10 Hosts, covering the base area and both sides of the upper mountain. Their role can range from helping to change signboards, assisting people with directions, or providing help down the mountain.
Check out this awesome video on Fernie Alpine Resort Mountain Hosts!
We are very fortunate to have many long-serving Mountain Hosts, 3 have been volunteering for more than 25 years and received a Lifetime Pass here at Fernie. Charlotte is actually in her 31st year of Hosting which is just incredible!
Some fun facts
– The average years of Hosting is 12
– This year we have five 1st year Hosts
– The average age is 68
– The youngest is 49
– The oldest is 84
– We have 17 that are over 70
– 3 Host couples come from the East every year
This year for the Griz Days Parade, our Mountain Hosts, in uniform, acted as parade marshals which earned them lots of thanks from grateful parents along the route. Always going above and beyond for their community, it was a wonderful sight to see them walking alongside all of the parade floats.
The Mountain Hosts aren’t all work and no play! They have a social committee & have about 3 parties a season. They even hand out awards at their end of year party- one particular award goes to the person with the funniest “screw up”. The basic rule being that you cannot be injured in doing the “screw up” as we don’t want to encourage people to strive too hard for this notoriety. It’s always a good laugh!
In March this year, we had the sad passing of Roy McLean, a much-loved host of 15 years. In tribute 18 Hosts, and may other friends and family, participated in “Roy’s Run” down Falling Star to commemorate him on his favourite run. This is to become an annual event.
It is a rewarding job providing local knowledge and meeting people from all over the world. The frequent guest reply of “You are living my dream!” is a nice reminder of how fortunate we are to be here in Fernie.
The Mountain Hosts are a great addition to Fernie Alpine Resort. These volunteers give up their time to make sure that our guests always have a friendly face close by if they ever have a question or need a helping hand, and we are very lucky to have them!