Top 5 Ways to Embrace Winter
- Play in the mountains aboard your mighty machine, snowmobiling HuntersRange
- Listen to the sound of snowflakes falling and crunching underneath your feet, snowshoeing the Enderby Cliffs or Larch Hills
- Experience the most Canadian of pastimes, ice fishing our frozen lakes for trout and whitefish
- Bring binoculars and your digital camera for a riverside winter wildlife photo safari
- Experience the arts with special performances at the Caravan Farm Theatre, local concerts, jam sessions, and open-mic nights at pubs and venues around town
Return of the Swans
The first sign that fall and winter are upon us is the annual return of the swans. You’ll hear them before you see them…trumpeting their way to the Shuswap River and their winter home. Tundra and Trumpeter Swans are just two of the magnificent species of birdlife you’ll spy circling the river…eagles, osprey, hawks and beautiful snowy owls all winter here too.
Bird-watchers and photographers also migrate here between November and April, capturing memorable sightings and inspiring photos of their favoured winter wildlife.
When the Snow Flies
When the swans are flocking that usually means the snow is flying, and if you love playing outdoors, well, this is the place to be. With an average of 146 cm (4 feet) of dry, powdery snow and moderate temperatures lingering just below 0°C our mountains are a perfect playground for winter sports lovers. Skiing (Nordic and Alpine), sledding and searching for Big Foot on snowshoe are just a few ways we keep warm in the winter!
Nordic and Alpine Skiing
Whether you use skinny skies or wide planks, there are lots of ways to slide through the snow around here. You can start at Silver Star Mountain Resort, a short 45-minute drive from town and some of the Interior’s finest champagne powder…perfect for downhill and cross-country skiing. A little closer to town is Larch Hills Ski Area where you can learn to cross-country ski, compete in local loppets, and bring your favourite pup along for the fun on dog-friendly trails.
Listen to Snowflakes Fall
The forests are peaceful this time of year, so quiet, in fact, you can almost hear snowflakes falling. The Shuswap Trail Alliance organizes interpretive snowshoe tours of the Enderby Cliffs on select dates in the winter. Slip on your snowshoes and join in the fun learning about the geology, ecology and cultural significance the Cliffs have to the Splatsin First Nations.
If exploring on your own is more your style, head straight to Larch Hills for snow-covered serenity on their 125-kilometre network of trails that wind their way through peaceful mountainside forests.
Hunters Range — Snowmobiling
If you’d rather not propel yourself through the snow, jump aboard a humming snowmobile and experience the joys and freedom of an adrenaline-fueled ride through the mountains. Hunters Range is home to more than 90 kilometers of marked and groomed trails and strategically placed warming huts. Bring a lunch, and a sense of adventure to explore snowy bowls and alpine meadows that are steep and deep with powder. The Hunters Range Snowmobile Association is your best place to start for up-to-the-moment conditions on groomed and back-country trails.
Hunters Range has riding conditions for every ability level, from beginner to experienced rider and fun filled events for all ages. Get the kids out on a smaller scale machine at their kids event, ride to the chalet following the signs for the BINGO rally, or go head to head at Battle Traxx. Hunters Range will get the whole family playing in the snow this winter.
A Canadian Pastime — Ice Fishing
Fishing isn’t just a summer sport around here — in fact, some of our lakes are busier in winter than summer with anglers fishing for eight-pound rainbow trout or the elusive mountain whitefish.
There’s perhaps nothing more Canadian than slipping and sliding your way across a frozen lake, drilling a hole, dropping a line and waiting for something to bite! Gardom and Hidden Lakes are the prime ice fishing spots around here. Once the ice comes off between March and April you can still find folks fishing for Dolly Varden from the shore, angling for the big one!
We are an artistic community at our core and that doesn’t end when the summer sun sets. Winter performances at Caravan Farm Theatre are pure magic! Experience a live performance, staged in the wilderness where you and the local farm animals all get in on the act… cozied up on a horse-drawn sleigh roving the farm from one stage set to the next.
Discover fresh, local bands at live concerts, jam sessions and open-mic nights at warm, cozy venues throughout the winter and you may just discover the soundtrack of the season.
Markets aren’t just for summer, browse the work of local artist at the indoor Winter Market. Find snacks, local handmade products, and so much more.