Things To Do
BC’s Coolest Ski Towns
The case for skiing north of the border, written by an American
Located a mere fifteen minutes from downtown Prince George, Otway is an amazing recreational hub for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing enthusiasts. They claim 55 kilometres (34 miles) of groomed trails, including lighted trails for night skiing and dog friendly trails, a big lodge with concession, equipment rentals and a biathlon range.
We arrived at the Otway mid-morning. After finding a somewhat wobbly rhythm, we glided down a short trail to the gravel pit and the smell of a campfire where they were holding a hot dog roast.
Not being much of a skier, going up and down even the small hills was a tad frightening. A very kind member of the Caledonia Nordic Ski Club must have taken pity on us and offered up some tips (for which I was grateful… that is, until he made me test my newfound knowledge by actually climbing shakily up a hill and screaming my way back down). But really, everyone I met was relaxed, smiling and beyond friendly!
We headed back to the lodge for lunch – a delicious hot bowl of homemade chilli, hot chocolate and a cookie – a perfect fit for the beautiful winter day. We sat outside on the lodge’s big balcony, watching the families having fun below and enjoying the live fiddle music being played next to us.
After lunch, we signed up to try out the biathlon range. We received a quick orientation and actually got to try out shooting (without the pressure of slowing our breathing and heart rate from a fast pace race first, thankfully!). Having shot plenty before, I was happy to hit five out of five targets (my hubby only hit four, but I promised not to mention that part, so don’t tell!).
At the end of the day, we took some time to explore some of the trails and practice our “not falling going down hills” (I’ve got a lot of work to do there, it seems). After an hour of this, I know we barely scratched the surface of the trail circuit. It was a beautiful day – gorgeous scenery, friendly people and incredibly well planned activities by the Caledonia Nordic Ski Club (thank you!). I’m definitely adding cross-country skiing to my (growing) list of favourite things to do during our northern winters.
Things To Do
From powder to steeps to trees, from on-piste to off-piste to backcountry, the big mountains of BC naturally build better skiers and boarders.
3 - 7 days / 694.88 km (432 mi)
The Coast Mountain Circle Route combines the best of outdoor attractions and adventure to create an unforgettable visit.
Things To Do
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