Surprisingly and unbelievably, our prarie province of Manitoba with no big mountains like Alberta, British Columbia or Quebec is home to six ski resorts great enough for downhill skiing. For a ski enthusiast there’s no need to make long trips or fly to other resorts unless you want to challenge your skills for more daring adventurous exploits of difficult black terrains or runs because right in our own backyard we can quench our cravings to put on our ski gear to cross-country or head downhill.
Located just 15 minutes from downtown Winnipeg off highway 59 north on the Oasis Road the Springhill Winter Sports Park provides alpine skiing, snowboarding, ski and snowboard rentals and professional ski and snowboard lessons. Though quite small the park with 3 chairlifts (one quad) and two rope tows has a mogul run, a race run and open areas for the novices to learn the sport.
Known as the snowboarding capital of Manitoba, the Stony Mountain Resort ten miles north of our capital city is also great for skiing.
For a year-round outdoor adventure experience the downhill and cross-country trails of Falcon Trails Resort located at the eastern end of Falcon Lake.
And have you heard about the Mystery Mountain Ski Resort in the northern part of the province just outside Thompson?
A new ski area in the south western Manitoba is the largest one, the family-oriented Asessippi Ski Resort, a great place to relax and enjoy skiing, snowboarding and snow tubing. Complete with full hospitality service (lunch, dinner and breakfast court and adults-only pub) the resort offers terrains of 25 alpine runs for all abilities and skill levels.
Still popular due to its complete outdoor facilities and proximity (only 90 miles from Winnipeg via highway #3 from the perimeter) is the Holiday Mountain Resort situated at the Pembina Valley nestled La Riviere, a town of approximately 250 people founded in 1886 by the Metis-Franco Manitobans. Home to the Wild Turkey the town is also famous for Hamm-tone Guitars and Mandolins and the Pembina Valley Guitar Building Course.
Founded by Noel Later in 1959 the Canadian family-owned Holiday Mountain Resort is Manitoba’s ski resort with the first snow making system, first chairlift and first snow camera. However, the founder’s favourite achievement is the installation of the first Carpet Lift believing he revolutionize skiers just learning. The Wonder Carpet Beginner doesn’t require you to get on a lift or rope tow by stepping onto the carpet and comfortably gliding to the top of the slope.
Continuing the family tradition of innovation the owner installed in January 2013 Manitoba’s first Winter Zipline – Manitoba’s longest, steepest and fastest at over 1,487 ft. in length for a flight cost of $30.00 during winter or summer. Safety is assured as helmets are provided and the lines are professionally designed, engineered aand installed by the Office of the Fire Commissioner and Manitoba School Boards Association of Risk Management.
Offering great alpine and cross-country skiing, snowboarding, snow tubing, and a ski jump Holiday Mountain has 11 trails/runs that are named after the people who helped the founder with the creation of the resort. The blue chair operating at full speed from 9:00 am to 4:30 pm takes you to the intermediate and advanced runs such as the Deacon, Nowak Express, Irving, McCoubrey, Ridley, Groff, Turner, Reid, and Barclay Bowl. The green double chairlift running a bit slower than the blue from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. brings the skiers to the beginner or green runs. This lift doesn’t run during night skiing.
Holiday Mountain is Manitoba’s only resort with on-site accommodations. From one of its 10 cozy chalet-style A-frame cabins you could ski-out and ski-in!
How much it cost you to ski at Holiday Mountain? Quite reasonable. The adult rate for full day is $40.00 and half-day ticket after 1:00 pm is $29.00. Students and military, $36.00; seniors (65 & up) $36.00; Youth (13-17), $34.00; Junior (6-12), $25.00, and under 6, FREE. Identifications are required for all discounted prices. Rentals are available. Helmets are optional at Holiday Mountain.
Before you leave check all your skiing gear and most importantly also the weather conditions. If it’s harshly cold you won’t enjoy skiing or snowboarding. Enjoy and have fun!