You have some time to kick back with the family over the next couple of weeks – how about a fun cross-country ski through the sparkling snow under the big blue sky followed up by a creamy hot chocolate? Ok then, here are three places for a family ski in Lacombe this holiday. This winter wonderland image is one of last year’s photo contest submissions from Lacombe Tourism on Facebook.
The new TransCanada Trail
Start the 8-km TransCanada Trail from Lacombe to Blackfalds at the Lacombe Research Station public parking lot and ski through a century-old alley of giant evergreens and puffy snow-capped forest. Follow the beautiful natural trail past Lacombe Lake all the way to the Abbey Centre – a new rec centre in Blackfalds and the only place in Canada where the trail travels indoors. You can stick around here a while – the Abbey Centre is a fitness centre, play space, running track, gym and, in the summer, one of the biggest outdoor waterparks in Canada too.
Winter wildlife at JJ Collett
The JJ Collett nature preserve is 635 acres of aspen and spruce forest, open meadows and ancient sand dunes – 15 minutes north of town towards Ponoka. The nine trails that weave through the park are all open in the winter thanks to a team of dedicated volunteers. Trails 7, 8 and 9 are set for cross-country skiing and the rest are groomed for walking through a winter wonderland (please, please, please bring the dog, says the dog.)
Rolling along the Lacombe Golf Course
Lacombe Golf Course has trails through the property – over rolling greens and under all those hundreds of trees. The club’s pro shop is open and memberships are available – just in case, you are looking for a last minute gift, hint, hint, honey. The course is on the west edge of town along Hwy 12.
Bonus ski day: Need for speed?
Spend another fun family day at the Medicine Lodge Ski Area, just 11 km west of Bentley. This approachable ski area has 500 vertical feet of terrain and 13 family-friendly runs. The hills are great for beginners who are just learning – plus the country landscapes west along Hwy 12 make one of the region’s most scenic drives. Open Saturdays & Sundays from 10–4 – check their Facebook page for lessons and clinics.
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