Lazy Lizard Snowshoe & Mountain Shadows Loop

Lazy Lizard Snowshoe by Julie Kelly
As we move into the New Year the Fernie Trails Alliance (FTA) will be celebrating a new board. We are very appreciative of the hard work the five Directors who are stepping down have put in over the years. Thank you to Dave McBeath and Pat Gilmar who began the FTA alongside Ian Stokie in 2008 and have been on the board since its inception, and to Terry Nelson who joined a few years later. JF DesLauriers and Jennifer Sliva have made some great contributions over their term. With our new board, we will be conducting a strategic planning session in January to map out the next few years. Your input from our General Meeting in November will help to guide our path.

The FTA is also celebrating the success of the Fairy Creek Part two connector. This paved, divided trail connects the Visitor Centre to the Fairy Creek Bridge. It allows bikers and pedestrians a safe way to travel. This multi-year project has been the result of a great collaboration between the City of Fernie and the FTA. Thank you to all of our funders and volunteers for contributing along the way.

We hope you enjoy your holiday season with family and friends. To kick it off why not head out on this family-friendly snowshoe on one of Fernie’s classic trails, Lazy Lizard. Head over to Mount Fernie Provincial Park, follow the signs to Island Lake Lodge and park in the lot below the gate. The trail begins with a short grunt from the road but levels out quickly. Enjoy the beautiful cedar trees and undulating terrain. You will cross a number of bridges along the way and be treated to some spectacular views. The trail finishes at the fabulous Island Lake Lodge. Be sure to call the lodge ahead of time if you are looking to book in for lunch over the winter season.

Mountain Shadows Loop by Brittany Tracey
Difficulty: Green
Distance: 14 km (return)
Elevation: 500 m
Approx. time: 1.5 – 2 hours

Sparwood Trails Alliance was hard at work this fall with its Newly Minted “Workparty Wednesdays” (which will make a comeback in the spring) getting the trails prepped and ready for winter grooming. With our successful fundraising event in September and a nice top-up, we were able to raise the funds to purchase a second “Snowdog” winter groomer and expand our winter trails network immensely. We have multiple trails groomed and ready for multi-use this winter: fatbikers, skiers, snowshoers, and runners or walkers welcome! Put your new Christmas gear to the test.

This month’s featured trail is The Mountain Shadows Loop, also fondly known as The Golf Course Loop. This is 3.8km of beginner-friendly trail that can be run, fatbiked, or snowshoed with a few good hills and beautiful forest that won’t leave you bored. If you want to embark on skis however you may find it to be more intermediate than beginner as some of the hilly sections can be quite steep for that particular winter sport. It can be accessed at the Trailhead by the Sparwood Golf Club. Hope to see you out there enjoying our trails this season!