We’re up in the first round in the 4th annual Ski Town Throwdown by Powder Mag! VOTE for Fernie now, voting for the first round only runs until this Thursday Oct 15th at 7pm MST!
VOTE now —-> http://ow.ly/TlFOL!
Fernie is a place of firsts. Years ago pioneering mountain guides like Bruno Engler discovered a powder paradise in the Lizard Range. Then in 1962, on land donated by Galloway Lumber, Fernie Snow Valley Ski Resort was born, a mom and pop ski hill guided by the vision of the legendary skiing couple. Heiko and Linda Socher. In the years that followed the resort underwent an epic transformation from local powder hound’s secret to world class Fernie Alpine Resort, with the addition of new lifts and accessing of five alpine bowls that built on the resort’s already existing appeal for skiers and boarders wanting deep snow and steeps. But as the resort evolved, the developers paid close attention to the visitor experience beyond ski lifts and vertical -they wanted to ensure that a stay on the mountain was memorable, like an immersion in mountain culture. That was the simple but beautiful logic behind the creation of Lizard Creek Lodge, one of the first boutique ski in-ski out lodges in the Canadian Rockies.
“Now we are at it again- setting the stage, a Mountain Lifestyle destination deserves a great place to gather! So here is to ‘Gathering More’ – we want you to celebrate ‘Together Time’ in the mountains with us at the new Lizard Creek Lodge at Fernie Alpine Resort as we begin renovation on the great room!
For more images and updates on the renovation visit the Lizard Creek Lodge website.
View the full Press Release online.
Image this. Standing on the edge of a massive alpine bowl, peering down at the absolutely epic vastness of it and nearly drooling at the pristinely perfect powder it laden with below you. Now imagine not 1, not 2, not even 3 of these bowls but five huge alpine bowls (all in one spot), and you’ve got Fernie Alpine Resort.
Fernie Alpine Resort, located in Fernie, B.C., is one of those places people would refer to as a hidden gem. The masses haven’t yet discovered it, and as a result, it is a large ski resort with a massive amount of terrain known for its uncrowded slopes (and, of course, for up to 37 feet of powder a season). Most people who have been lucky enough to discover Fernie, or even luckier yet, to live in Fernie, have a strong opinion of their favourite terrain to ride at the resort and why.
Here are some tips on where to check out (but you didn’t hear this from us):
No, not the food. The more extreme rider loves Currie Bowl. Drop into Currie for some of the best steeps on the mountain.
“I love Currie Bowl for many different reasons. The famed Currie rope drop, the whole Concussion zone and Alpha Centauri just to name a few. But the main reason is it accesses the Big 3. For me, there is no better situation at FAR 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
You’ll be hard-pressed to find a rider who doesn’t love White Pass or Surprize. Timber 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?
“Timber is sick because of the trees that catch the pow pow. You can access the trees from either the Timber Chair or the Whitepass Chair. If you hit Whitepass and drop skiers right (lookers left), you can grab that pow hidden in the trees rapid fire over and over again, and it gets boring fast…….NOT.”
– Mark Kowalchuk, co-owner of Artschool Skateboards & Clayman Ltd.
Siberia Bowl is known for its long and vast runs, where you might not see another rider for days. If you’re looking for untouched, hidden powder, Siberia Bowl is the place to check out.
“A lot of people think that as soon as you get off the chair, you should instantly go right instead of heading straight – they would be wrong.”
– Lynch from X92.9 Calgary’s Best Rock Alternative
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, where pro athletes gather each season in an epic race and compete for great prizes in the Monster Enemy Lines event.
“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
Cedar Bowl is a local favourite with lots of natural rollers and fall lines, providing amazing vistas and views. Snake Ridge stays freshest the longest, and you can get in some great long laps.
“Haul Back, Boom, Repeat!”
-Paul Whitham, Sales at RCR
With over 2500 acres of skiable terrain, many of which are in the bowls, possibly the only problem you’ll run into while riding at Fernie Alpine Resort is not having enough time to ride it all. But that’s okay; it just gives you another excuse to come back!
The best deals of the winter season have just been released! Book now for winter and save up to 35% on your getaway. Packages available include The Weekender for shorter stays, The Midweek pack for the best deals, the new Ski Weeks packages (booking everything for you from air/car to lodging/lifts) and The Holiday Pack – already taking bookings for Christmas & New Years.
Freebies are included in some packages – view our Early Booking offers, all are available to be booked online. Give us a call at 1-800-258-7669 to book with a friendly vacation specialist over the phone or visit www.skircr.com/vacations to chat live with a specialist (during business hours).
Our tentative weekend opening date for the 2015/2016 season will be Friday, December 4th.
See who else is going and receive updates – join our Facebook event.
Is it your first season skiing/riding at Fernie Alpine Resort? Check out our First Timer’s Guide.
Looking to book a vacation? Early Booking offers are on now, book online or call a reservation specialist at 1-800-258-7669. Live chat is also available on the RCR Vacations website, during business hours.
Photos by Vince Mo.
Words by: Andrew Findlay
Photos by: Robin Siggers & Fernie Alpine Resort
Published: March 15, 2015
Robin Siggers discovered Fernie some three decades ago long before someone conjured up that delicious sounding term Powder Highway. The Vancouver boy never left. It’s a Thursday afternoon, and I’m following Siggers as he drops into Corner Pocket, a spicy little couloir that squeezes into wide open Lizard Bowl, one of five bowls at Fernie Alpine Resort. The couloir features a fixed rope allowing people to hand line down the steep, often wind polished entrance that always gets the adrenaline pumping. Siggers goes first. He holds the rope, does a side slipping abseil to where the chute opens up. He releases the rope and after a trio of tight jump turns, exits the couloir then waits for me in the lee of a vertical limestone cliff that trims the bowl. This guy clearly loves skiing. As operations manager he probably bags more days on snow than an airline pilot logs time in the air. He loves skiing so much, that he’s out here today, on his day off, shredding like a 25 year old with a bunch of visiting writers.
For the already initiated, the Powder Highway needs no introduction. For the uninitiated, think of it as the place in British Columbia where you go to realize your skiing dreams, where the terms steep and deep are more than just platitudes on a brochure or website – they’re real, very real. Nature pays special attention to this corner of BC, a province already blessed from a snow sports perspective. As winter weather fronts march east from the Pacific Ocean, they discharge moisture on the rugged Coast Range. By the time these systems hit the Columbia Mountains and western slope of the Rockies, they have recharged with moisture from interior lakes. Snow falls again, this time in dreamy, fluffy, feather-light quantities. There are no guarantees; it’s weather after all, but the odds are on your side when you travel the Powder Highway. The ridiculous variety and concentration of world class destination resort, cat, backcountry lodge and heli skiing operations is a testament to the riches. Skiers are smart this way. Like Robin Siggers, they go to where the goods are. You’ve probably heard about the Powder Highway, and it’s now lodged in your brain. It won’t go away, so it’s time to act. Consider Fernie Alpine Resort and Kicking Horse Mountain Resort the southern and northern bookends to your Powder Highway road trip. Fernie overlooks the charming town of the same name, tucked into the Lizard Range, a magical piece of geology that puts the lie to the claim that it never really snows in the Canadian Rockies. Here, where the craggy Lizard Range sits perpendicular to the normal north-south axis of the Rockies, intensely local weather systems re-circulate over the mountains often dumping coastal quantities of snow on the resort’s array of wide open bowls, chutes and long meandering tree runs. By the time, you’ve zig zagged your way up Kootenay back roads and Columbia Mountain valleys, legs feeling fit and acclimatized to Powder Highway vertical, you’ll arrive on the western side of the Rocky Mountain Trench at Kicking Horse Resort. This is where you’ll get your game on – again. As you ride up the Golden Eagle Express gondola your eyes will scan the bony ridges that cut the Dogtooth Range, and divide the Kicking Horse into four main zones of downhill fun. Top to bottoms at Kicking Horse are legendary. Stack a few of these 1,260 meter vertical back-to-back and you’ll have no problem sitting at the Eagle’s Eye restaurant and tucking into a lunch of Elk Bourguignon or some good old Alberta beef. Or perhaps you’ll make dinner reservations at this peerless mountain-top dining room. You’ll watch the moonrise, and the first stars twinkle over the surrounding peaks. Or perhaps snowflakes falling in the amber glow of the outdoor lights. You’ll dream of the Powder Highway and when you’ll come back. Once experienced, never forgotten. Just ask Robin Siggers.
While there are many, many reasons to Mountain Bike (or learn to), here are (arguably) some of the best;
1) Bragging rights and Looking Cool
Can you ride the Binlogdin Wall? Or take on Rumplestumskin, the new Duff Dynasty trail, maybe perhaps even Phat Larry’s? You’re awesome – brag it up!
2) Impress your crush
Boys, girls will be impressed with your skills and girls..boys will be SUPER impressed with your skills!
3) Skip the gym but stay in shape
Have you ever tried Mountain Biking? If you have you’ll know how hard it works your core, similar to snowboarding in the winter, so stay in shape and outside while doing so!
4) Get in a tan
Soak in the sunlight, not the fake lights – Now that you are in shape, get your tan to match that bod! (You might have to work on this during your lunch break)
5) The truth about mountain biking
The truth about mountain biking here is it doesn’t have to be intimidating. Over the last few season Fernie has made a huge effort to increase the amount of trails for the beginner and intermediate rider as well as offering a variety of lessons and brush up courses (although we still have plenty of hardcore trails for those looking for an intense ride).
6) Sun, Mountain Air, Views
A day in the Fernie bike park with the gently rolling mountain views with the town of Fernie in the distance and the sunshine on your face, is always better than a day in the city or office. Hands down. No Contest.
By Cali Sammel
Photos by Nicole Matei & Henry Georgi
Lizard Creek Lodge is known for its luxury accommodations including everything from Hotels to Condos, as well as providing an exception dining experience for guests as well as the public to enjoy. With an outdoor patio and a gorgeous great room to enjoy, it makes a great date night idea or dinner out with the family.
Some of our suggested delectable dishes to try include;
Photo by Powder Matt Mosteller
Get more information on Lizard Creek Lodge online or by call 250-423-2057.
Bless me Bike Park for I have sinned, it has been one week since my last Trail Crew Confession. We have been bombarded this week with requests for the inside scoop on what has been happening in the Bike Park. It feels like a public flogging some days but I assure you, it is not sloth, we are just toiling away with our heads down, eyes on the prize only a short few days away. We are proud to say this will be the most legendary summer at Fernie Alpine Resort yet.
The Bike Crew set forth unto the mountain this week with a solid schedule of machine and hand work but our plans quickly changed. Unfortunately, we were plagued by machine issues and lost a few discouraging days waiting for parts. Rising above our wrath, the time out enabled our crew to chase the Timber side snowline. Our alpine trails are usually out of consideration this early in the season as deep snowpack and heavy blow down can take weeks to mitigate. But, with newly found “free time”, we headed up, shovels and snow pants in hand. Discouragement soon turned to lusting about rousing these epic trails back to life from their winter sleep and we began digging. The drier sections received some detailed buffing, with most of our focus being on the middle section of Rumplestumpskin. Looks like we will be able to offer TNT, Rumplestumpskin, and Bike Thief for the first time ever on opening weekend.
As we speak, the mini hoe is back in service and working in the rain to cut the last new stretch on Mr. Berms. What now looks like a swath of destruction will start coming together this week as hand crews move in to shape the lips and berms. A sneak peak at the new work left the Bike Team wiping drool from our dirt stained faces, lusting on who will get the first ride. We love a loamy single track descent here at Fernie Alpine Resort, but this new machine made trail will be manageable for less confident riders to access Eville and Honey Bee yet will still allow advanced riders to “flow and show” their way to base.
The crew has also been greedily fixing a few of our own personal arch nemesis sections of trail – confident that if it bugs us – it bugs you too. There is a small route change to the Deer Trail around a previously rooty and eroded fall line section. We continue to pick away at repairing some other tired sections of trails as well. Alternate Flight Pattern needed dirt work and root removal; there is new rock armoring additions in some chronic bomb holes; and the usual minor wood work repairs to old technical terrain features. As always, we are on a mission to ensure the trails at FAR are sustainable; able to handle high levels of traffic though out the dry season and, of course, ensuring your #ferniestoke meter is revving on high all season.
On another unusual, but very cool note, deep, late melting snow packs are holding grizzly bears lower down in the valley than usual this time of year. It is hard not to be envious of them watching us from the ski runs, lazing in the hot summer sun, gorging their furry bellies on dandelions. We are kicking it into high gear with just two weeks until opening day. Taking a lesson from these gluttonous bears as we too, fill our bellies and fuel our muscles for the final trail work assault.
Hopefully, our hard work this week is retribution for the lack of Bike Park updates and photo posts. We look forward to seeing your rejoicing dirty grins in BOTH our lift lines on June 28th, 2014. This mountain is our church, biking is our religion, and for all you fellow believers… welcome home.
Your Fernie Alpine Resort Bike Crew
Another push of the pedal, another turn of the cranks, a well oiled chain, and the bike park gears keep going. Your FAR Bike Crew is ardently back in the saddle …spinning our wheels getting this place ready for another awesome opening day on June 28th, 2014. Like pro cyclists who spend years perfecting their pedal stroke, until all phases seamlessly blend together into a powerful semblance of efficient energy, we too are just hitting our best stride.
Each season we draft behind the triumphs of previous summers, note and swerve around the mistakes, then charge forward in our Bike Crew peloton towards that famous “Legendary” acclamation. Our crew embarked on a not so glamorous ‘drainage campaign’ last year and the results have paid off. After a solid week of spring trail inspections, I am proud (and relieved) to say that things are looking pretty good out there. This translates into the ability for our team to hammer forward on some detailed maintenance we have been longing to complete and, furthermore, to add a few new projects our guests have been begging for.
With two weeks until the lifts start spinning, our preparation plan is as follows. Mr Berms has been totally rebuilt and moved into the newly gladed tree island under the Elk Chair. We have reduced the grade, added some flow, and look ahead to a much smoother, and more sustainable trail surface. There is an improved access from Mr. Berms over to Eville and Honey Bee via the “Hurtin’ Albertan” connection on Hornet. Further to that; we have built an entirely new trail from the Bear Chair load elevation to the base area (our crew is calling it Duff Dynasty but who knows if that yellow jersey will stick). In addition, we have reworked Ben’s Big Rig to mellow the fall away sections and improve the berm to berm rail-ability for those cruising with more speed. These upgrades will promote progression within our bike park and open up a whole new network of creative trail to trail connection options.
With this steady cadence, a solid pit crew of dedicated employees, and the co-operation of our best friend – Mother Nature, it looks like a clear race to the finish line. As tired muscles become the norm, hands thicken with calloused palms, and dirt tattooes into skin, we settle into our bike crew niche and keep pedaling to deliver your Legendary Summer 2014.
Your Fernie Alpine Resort Bike Crew