Winter in the Rockies is an exciting time. The beautiful landscape is covered in pristine, powdery snow, creating prime conditions for not only some of the world’s best skiing and snowboarding, but all kinds of winter adventures and sports. We’ve compiled a list of some of our favourite things to do in winter when we’re not hitting the slopes. Whether it's ice skating on frozen lakes or cross country skiing under the northern lights, get ready for your next action-packed winter getaway!
- Snowshoe Exploration: Enjoy the mountains covered in deep, fresh powder and the amazing scenery of the backcountry with a Snowcat Snowshoe Adventure from White Mountain Adventures! Access pristine backcountry snowshoeing with a guided tour at Fortress Mountain. This tour includes transportation from your hotel, a Snowcat adventure to access untouched backcountry snow and a day of exploring the stunning Canadian Rockies. Snowshoes, poles and a snack are provided on this no-hassle tour. All you have to do is have fun!
- Slip ‘n Slide: Have you tried tubing? It’s fast, family-friendly and way more fun than you’d expect! Tubing can be a great way to spend the day outside during winter in the rockies, or a nice evening cap to your day on the slopes. Tube Parks are a popular addition to most ski hills, including Mount Norquay, Lake Louise Ski Resort, Nakiska and Kicking Horse Mountain Resort.
- Fatbike Slim: Don’t let the snow stop you from hitting the trails! Jasper National Park has a number of well-groomed trails perfect for fatbiking in the winter months. It’s a great way to see the area and keep active as those chunky tires sail over any ice, stones and debris without a hitch. Try trail 7 along the scenic Athabasca River, or incorporate it on a slightly longer journey from Red Squirrel to Lake Mildred. For easier options try the Woodpecker Loop to Lake Annette or Pyramid Lake Loop, which is a perfect option for beginners. For something intermediate, bike along Pyramid Trail for a steady climb to Pyramid Lake. Visit the Jasper Visitor Centre for trail maps and recommendations and stop into the Pines Restaurant for a snack after working up an appetite.
- Barking Mad: Every tried mushing a team of Alaskan huskies? Dogsledding is a fun way to enjoy the outdoors. Learn to drive the team or stay in the sled and watch the world go by as you speed through the snow. Snowy Owl Sled Dog Tours, Mad Dogs and Englishmen and Howling Dogs in Canmore offer great tours along Spray Lakes. Check out Kingmik Dogsled Tours in Lake Louise, or Cold Fire Creek Dogsledding in Jasper.
- Ice Climbing: Jasper National Park is a world-class destination for one of winter’s most exhilarating sports: ice climbing. Not for the faint hearted, the astounding frozen waterfalls that develop throughout the park create a thrilling and dynamic way to enjoy the winter wonderland and test your sense of adventure. Local guidebooks and rental equipment are available at Gravity Gear or take a guided tour with Rockaboo Mountain Adventures.
- Golden Glory: Surrounded by the Canadian Rockies, and the Purcell and Selkirk mountains, Golden is an outdoor oasis just waiting to be explored! Try snowmobiling with Rocky Mountain Riders. Golden is home to over 240km of groomed trails with a variety of zones through steep hills and forests for beginners and advanced sledders.
- Stoked to Revel in Winter: Revelstoke is a year-round mountain community whose winter sports are the cream of the crop. Listed as a ‘must do trip’ on National Geographic’s Ultimate Adventure Bucket List, the town of Revelstoke is home to the most skiable vertical in North America, world class snowmobile trails, Nordic trails, helicopter and cat skiing or snowboarding, dog sledding, snowshoeing and paragliding.
- Heli Ski? Hell Yeah: Regular terrain getting boring? With over 2,000 square km of every type of mountain terrain and exposure imaginable, you’ve got to try heli-skiing with Purcell. Or, venture into the wilderness with CMH and stay at one of their 12 lodges. Colossal glaciers, alpine bowls and subalpine forests with guides finding the best fresh, pristine snow possible – this is a dream for any skier or rider.
Take it from us, you don’t want to miss out on the myriad of ways to enjoy the majestic frozen landscapes of the Rockies in winter. Pack your schedule with winter activities, exciting thrills and places to explore and we guarantee you’ll enjoy winter in the Rockies like you never have before!