Hotel at a Glance: Fernie Slopeside Lodge
The Canadian Rockies of western British Columbia cut a skyline that is at once imposing and picturesque—these mountains are more jagged and rugged than their American counterparts. Tucked away in the Lizard Range of these mountains, right at the base of the Fernie Alpine Resort, is Fernie Slopeside Lodge. In the colder months, the resort is a winter-sports hot spot with ski-in/ski-out access to some of British Columbia’s best slopes. Come summer, the mountain transforms into a destination for mountain biking, hiking, horseback riding, and whitewater rafting.
- Take a scenic chairlift ride or bike along the trails (bring your own bike or rent one from the resort).
- Recommended excursion: Go on a guided alpine hike with Bob, an expert who’s been with the resort for 11 years.
- Varied onsite dining: Enjoy casual grill grub at Kelsey’s, fine dining at Lizard Creek Lodge, and deli eats at Slopeside Café.
- Comfy accommodations feature flat-screen TVs and mini refrigerators.
- Most scenic spot to enjoy a meal: Lost Boys Café, located at the top of the Timber Express Chairlift, offers panoramic views of Elk Valley.
- Take a dip: There are two indoor hot tubs on site.
Fernie, British Columbia: Mountain Town with World-Class Outdoor Recreation
Fernie began as a coal-mining boomtown in the 1870s and reinvented itself in the 1960s with its namesake ski resort. Fernie’s western-facing location in the Lizard Range of the Canadian Rockies makes it a popular spot for skiing; the slopes are blanketed with more than 30 feet of snow annually.
You can get a good idea of what life was like in Fernie at the turn of the century in the downtown area, which has a number of historical buildings. For more context, pop into the Fernie Museum, which has exhibits on ski artifacts and galleries with photos of the city through the years.
Of course, you’d be remiss to spend all your time in Fernie cooped up indoors. Even in the warmer months, the chairlift is up and running at Fernie Alpine Resort. It drops you off along the mountainside, where you can mountain bike and hike amid alpine meadows. The fishing is also superb in this region; you can land a trophy fish at the Elk, St. Mary, or Kootenay Rivers.