The best way to enjoy winter is to embrace it. While the weather can be a deterrent, if you dress appropriately, long days in the elements can be fun and oh so memorable! Exercise, fresh air and the option to head inside for a steaming cup of hot chocolate or coffee make skiing and snowboarding one of the best winter activities. Northeastern Ontario may not initially strike you as the leading place to ski or snowboard, but it should!
We’ll make deciding where to go a little bit easier – start with these three exciting options across the region:
Open: December 26th, 2016
Antoine Mountain is located off of Highway 656 near Mattawa. A hidden gem, this hill provides an elevation drop of 630 vertical feet across 15 runs. A balance of beginner, intermediate, and advanced runs ensures that all levels will enjoy a day on this hill. Antoine Mountain boasts incredible views over the Ottawa River and the surrounding mountains. With such spectacular views, you won’t even notice the cold!
Last year, the hill underwent several upgrades including the installation of a new Dopplemayr quad chair and renovations to the beautiful chalet. The quad chair is capable of taking 2,000 people up each hour giving you more time to enjoy the hill. New signage, safety equipment and communications have been installed as well to ensure the best possible experience for guests. For ticket prices and any additional information, visit their website here.
Laurentian Ski Hill
Open: Beginner Hill – December 17th, 2016
Laurentian Ski Hill is situated in North Bay. Celebrating its 90th anniversary this year, this hill has offered memories for generations. While Laurentian Ski Hill may only have 350 feet of vertical, a terrain park provides challenges for the more advanced skier or boarder. Tickets can be purchased for periods ranging from two hours to the entire season offering flexibility for visitors and locals alike. They offer promotions at various intervals as well so it’s best to sign up on their mailing list to be the first to know of these deals.
Lessons and camps are also available including adult specific camps. Their “Adult Weekend Kick Off” is a great program that runs Friday evenings from 6-8 pm. After a night on the hill, you can join the après-ski fun inside the lower lodge.
Kamiskotia Snow Resort
Open: December 24th, 2016
Kamiskotia Snow Resort in Timmins offers runs of all levels but tends to have more blacks than any of the others on this list. Four hundred feet of vertical across 23 trails gives you plenty of options to try throughout the day. If the difficult runs are too intimidating for some visitors, there are other options including a tube park and dog sledding!
One of the coolest features at Kamiskotia Snow Resort is a deeply discounted ticket to ski or ride for the last hour of any day. This unique ticket sets you back only $10! Kamiskotia snow resort has an annual average snow fall of 340 cm. That combined with snow machines lead to one of the longest seasons in Ontario.
Please keep in mind that skiing and snowboarding are dangerous sports and you should take precautions, regardless of conditions. While not required, investing in a helmet is one of your best defences against serious injury. And always make sure someone knows where you are. Tree wells and uneven terrain are hazardous to even the most advanced skier or boarder. With safety in mind, warm clothes and an attitude for adventure, you are bound to have an unbelievable time at any of the resorts above!