Face it – winter in Central Ontario can be cold and snowy. But those don’t have to be bad things. When you live and work here, it’s easy to forget that there is some pretty incredible countryside right outside your door. If you’re looking for something out of the norm, here are 6 awesome winter adventures you have to try in 2017. Trust us, they’ll help you make the most of a Central Ontario winter.
STRAP UP AND GIVE DOGSLEDDING A GO
Windrift Adventures is located just 30 minutes outside of Barrie, but you’ll think you’re in another world. You get the full dog-sledding experience, from harnessing and hooking up your team to driving the sled. Depending on how adventurous you are, they offer 1/2 hour, 1/2 day, and full day tours.
SETTLE IN TO YOUR HUT AND ENJOY A DAY OF ICE FISHING
Lake Simcoe is one of the most popular spots in the entire province for ice fishing, and it’s literally in our back yard. Blue Hut Rentals will provide you with the full fishing experience, complete with hut, bait, and transportation to and from shore. Don’t forget to show up with your fishing licence (you can get it at any Canadian Tire) and Bailey’s for your coffee.
SKATE THROUGH THE FOREST TRAIL AT FERN RESORT
There is nothing quite like the feeling of skating on an outdoor rink, so suffice to say that a 1.5 kilometre skating trail through the woods in northern Ontario is pretty freaking magical. During the day, you can often spot animals peeking out through the trees. Fern Resort also offers Torch Lit Twilight skating through the trees, which is an incredible experience as well. Don’t have your own skates? No worries, you can rent them there.
GET OUT FOR A RIP ON A SNOWMOBILE
Simcoe County is home to hundreds of kilometres of snowmobile trails you could literally spend hours exploring the forests or touring around the lakes. If you’ve always wanted to try it, but are a bit nervous, try a guided tour they’ll show you the ropes and make sure you have a great time.
CROSS COUNTRY SKIING AT HARDWOOD SKI & BIKE
The awesome thing about cross country skiing is that pretty much everyone can do it. At Hardwood are loops for all ability levels, and they’re groomed everyday so the conditions are awesome. Added bonus? They also have snowshoe and fat bike trails, so if you want to give something else a try, you can.
There is some truly phenomenal skiing in Central Ontario, mostly thanks to the awesome snow conditions. Even when there isn’t snow in the GTA, there’s snow up here, and usually a ton of it. Snow Valley, Horseshoe Resort, and Mount Saint Louis/Moonstone are all just outside. Downhill is relatively easy to learn, once you’ve had a couple of lessons and mastered the “snowplow” turn you’ll be carving up black diamonds in no time. But the good news is, if you turn out not to be no good at skiing, everyone is awesome at apres ski.