Powder junkie? You don’t have to purchase a plane ticket to enjoy the snowy peaks that winter has to offer. Hit the slopes in Ontario’s Highlands and experience the thrill of downhill skiing or snowboarding on terrific ski hills, like Calabogie Peaks, home to the highest public peak in all of Ontario. It doesn’t matter if you prefer strapping on two skis or donning a single snowboard – you’ll still feel the rush of making fresh tracks in the snow as you descend down the hill on your race toward the bottom. Beginners will want to make the trip to Sir Sam’s in Haliburton to ride the covered surface lift that protects riders from harsh winds, blowing snow, and the cold – making it easier to ride longer. If it is your first time at a ski resort, lessons are available and will have you speeding down the groomed trails in no time.
Location: 1 hour drive from Ottawa
Get acquainted with the Ottawa Valley this winter with a visit to Calabogie Peaks Resort, south eastern Ontario’s supreme mountain, lake and wilderness destination. A winter getaway experience at Calabogie is defined by its pristine surrounding landscape: cradled in a valley dotted with heritage towns perfect for perusing on a lazy Saturday, and rolling hills laying out uninhabited landscapes waiting to be discovered.
Calabogie Peaks offers the highest summit in Ontario for skiers and snowboarders to enjoy in the winter season. There are two quads, three lifts servicing the hill, and a carpet lift for beginners. With 22 trails to explore, riders can spend all day perfecting their favourite runs. The resort also features two terrain parks and has a Snow School program for those who want to gain some confidence on the hill. When you’re done, warm up in your fireside suite in Dickson Manor.
Location: 45 minute drive from Ottawa
Families with downhill enthusiasts of all levels will love Mount Pakenham for its programs catering to parent, tot and teen. Mount Pakenham is Lanark County’s premier family ski, snowboard, and tubing area. Getting you up is a new quad, two other chairlifts, and terrain park T-Bar lift system. Beginner skiers and riders have a handle tow and rope tow and a carpet lift to access gentler terrain. Parents love the layout that brings every skier and rider down to a central point. Finding your child is easy! Besides perfect family terrain, Mount Pakenham compliments nature with impeccable nightly grooming and lots of early-season snow making. Don’t let a dry driveway deter you from alpine fun. They are famous for their snow all season long. Mount Pakenham is nestled between the charming towns of Almonte and Arnprior where all varieties of lodging can be found. For fast access to the hill the next morning, and a true log cabin chalet experience, head to Carnivic Lodge. Here you’ll find woodland views, traditional wood stove heating and a wonderful meal to help the family wind down amidst a perfect wintry night.
Sir Sam’s Ski/RIDE
Location: 3 hour drive from Toronto
Bundle up and enjoy the fresh powder at Sir Sam’s Ski/RIDE , a perfect hill in Ontario whether you’re looking to feed your budding passion for skiing or snowboarding; bond as a family; or escape for a romantic winter weekend on the slopes. Located in Haliburton, Sir Sam’s ski hill features challenging elevations, breathing views and friendly staff who will welcome you to the area, and to your new favourite winter sport. The hill has a 1100 foot covered surface lift to shield riders from the wind and cold, as well as four chair lifts for all-day fun. The resort also includes a snow park, terrain hill, and food and beverage facilities. Warm up after a day of sledding and feel yourself melt during a soak at Sir Sam’s Inn & WaterSpa.
Ontario’s Highlands Insiders
Knowledgeable in uncovering hidden gems, making fresh tracks, embracing new perspectives, and disconnecting from the everyday, this group of experts is happy to share their wisdom with you. With a passion for local stories, a love of delicious food, and a thirst for unrehearsed days, this team is made up of creative minds and wandering souls.