Rat­ed Top 75 Adven­tures in the World by Nation­al Geo­graph­ic Adven­ture mag­a­zine! We’ve run this pop­u­lar trip since 1996 and it’s got it all: spec­tac­u­lar Rocky Moun­tain scenery, hun­dreds of kilo­me­tres of amaz­ing British Colum­bia sin­gle­track, long climbs, tech­ni­cal descents, the world-famous Nipi­ka Moun­tain Resort, cold rivers, hot tubs, Banff Nation­al Park and more.

Stand on top of Prairie View Ridge and you’ll feel the awe of the Rocky Moun­tains. Your legs and lungs will be aching from the climb but your spir­it will soar over the 100-mile view across the prairies, the jagged peaks of the front range pro­vid­ing the back­drop for your per­son­al hero story.

Some­where along the way you might have mis­placed that wild unbri­dled spir­it of your youth, but don’t wor­ry – the Rock­ies will help you find it and bring it back into your life like a big ‘ol stam­pede. Join us in the Rock­ies and escape the drone of phones, traf­fic, emails and your whin­ing boss, to a place where the only sound you hear is the wild beat­ing heart of the Rocky Mountains. 

Is This Ride For You?

This Ride is for you if long, steep climbs don’t phase you, and tech­ni­cal, steep descents excite you! You can han­dle rocky ter­rain (climb­ing and descend­ing), nar­row sin­gle­track, and some expo­sure. You’re com­fort­able and con­fi­dent rid­ing a blend of cross coun­try and all-moun­tain trails. Rid­ing mul­ti­ple days in a row, 3–5 hours per day is no big­gie for you. You live for long days on the bike, reward­ed by the com­forts of a post-ride hot tub soak, a gor­geous lodge and a chilled beer.

Itinerary

Day 1. Wel­come to the Rockies!

Our pri­vate shut­tle will meet you at the Cal­gary Inter­na­tion­al Air­port and dri­ve the group to our lodge in beau­ti­ful Fernie.

Upon arrival, we encour­age you to unpack, set­tle in and rest up for the week of adven­ture ahead. The lodge will be our home base for the next few days of Fer­nie trail riding.

Tonight, we’ll dine at The Bridge Bistro and enjoy the patio over­look­ing the Elk River.

Day 2. Fer­nie Epics

After a good night of rest, you’ll awak­en to the smell of fresh brewed cof­fee, with views of the Rock­ies to accom­pa­ny our hearty group break­fast at the lodge.

This morn­ing, we’ll review the incred­i­ble weeks itin­er­ary, build our bikes and pick up rentals. We’ll pro­vide bike stands, tools and help­ing hands for any­one need­ing assistance.

We’ll cruise over to the amaz­ing local bike park and spend an hour warm­ing up with some skill review (believe us, there is always some­thing to learn!).

Once we’ve cleared the cob­webs, it’s off to the trails we go, head­ing out into the mas­sive trail net­work of Fer­nie with over 80 trails to choose from. We’ll hit up some clas­sics such as Eco-Ter­ror­ist,  Sidewinder and maybe throw in some new locals favourites as well.

Ear­ly after­noon, we’ll head back to the lodge for lunch and a quick rest, then head back out for a sol­id after­noon ride — Swine Flu, Mad Cow, or Far Side? You decide.

Of course, the day would­n’t be com­plete with­out a cool bev­er­age by the riv­er to top it off.

Day 3. Mt. Fer­nie and the Val­ley of Island Lake

Today’s trail of choice is called “Slunt” like slog and grunt had a baby. It’s not all leg burn and heavy breath­ing, as this trail ends with a 470M descent! 

We’ll work our way along the val­ley and tack­le one more big climb up to Island Lake Lodge for a top qual­i­ty lunch with unbe­liev­able views. After­wards, it’s all down­hill on the new Lazy Lizard flow trail. We guar­an­tee you’ll be sat­is­fied after this day of pedalling! 

There’s usu­al­ly time to pop into town and cruise the strip or relax in the hot tub before we dine in one of Fer­nie’s excel­lent restau­rants — maybe some sushi, maybe a local pub on the main street?

Day 4. Cas­tle Mountain

After break­fast at the lodge, we’ll have anoth­er hour long skills ses­sion at the Fer­nie Bike Park, includ­ing some coach­ing on high-speed cor­ner­ing, the pump track, small dirt jumps and drops!

We’ll then head up Cas­tle Moun­tain for anoth­er chal­leng­ing enduro style ride; as in a BIG climb fol­lowed by a HUGE descent! We’ll enjoy some more all-time views, includ­ing a sum­mit hike to real­ly take your breath away. Then it’s on to South­ern Com­fort (the trail, not the drink) — 500 meters of pure down­hill bliss.

We’ll head back to the lodge for a late lunch and some well deserved R&R. This after­noon is yours to enjoy off the bike. We love to hang out on the shores of the Elk Riv­er with a refresh­ing bev­er­age, and even jump in on a hot sum­mer day.

Tonight, enjoy anoth­er din­ner in the town of Fer­nie or order it in. Per­haps a hot tub and mas­sage are on the menu for you this evening?! This is our last night at our lodge in Fernie.

Day 5. Inver­mere, Toby Creek and Nipi­ka Moun­tain Resort

After an ear­ly break­fast, we’ll pack up and hop in the van for a scenic 2 ½ hour dri­ve to Invermere.

In the town of Inver­mere, we’ll check out a cute cafe for lunch.

We’ll then head to the trail­head to ride The John­son and Kloosi­fi­er trail. Hold on tight for this rolling cross coun­try ride with amaz­ing views skirt­ing along the edge of Toby Creek Canyon. Cold bev­er­ages await at the finish!

There’s anoth­er hour of Rocky Moun­tain scenery to enjoy, as we dri­ve to Nipi­ka Moun­tain Resort — a back coun­try par­adise with hors­es roam­ing free, rus­tic log cab­ins, and the sweet sound of the Koote­nay River.

Tonight, we’ll enjoy a BBQ din­ner pre­pared by your guides.

Day 6. Ped­alling and Pad­dling in The Rockies

After break­fast in our log cab­in, we’ll enjoy a full day of activ­i­ties in this vast and wild play­ground. The pri­vate sin­gle­track par­adise of Nipi­ka is set along the Koote­nay Riv­er val­ley, bor­der­ing Koote­nay Nation­al Park (part of the chain of Nation­al Parks that includes world-famous Banff and Jasper), and is sur­round­ed by jagged peaks and unlim­it­ed wilderness.

After a qual­i­ty morn­ing ride, we’ll enjoy lunch at the cab­in, then suit up for some white­wa­ter action! That’s right, we’ve got a 3‑hour pad­dle in store for you down the majes­tic, glac­i­er fed Koote­nay Riv­er! Pre­pare your­self for some mind-blow­ing scenery. We’ll fol­low a riv­er guide in sta­ble, easy han­dling inflat­able canoes and pass sev­er­al Class 1 and 2 rapids along the way. The riv­er takes us right back to Nipi­ka where, you guessed it, cold bev­er­ages await.

You’ll have time to relax while din­ner is pre­pared, then maybe play horse­shoes or have an evening game of disc golf, and a camp­fire under the stars.

Day 7. Banff Nation­al Park and Can­more, Alberta

After break­fast, you’ll have a lit­tle time to chill out before hop­ping in the van for a spec­tac­u­lar dri­ve through Koote­nay Nation­al Park.

We’ll stop in the town of Banff to get our tourist kicks, and lunch (Banff is a must-see on any trav­eller’s list!).

After lunch, it’s only 20 min­utes to Can­more, where we’ll check into the cen­tral­ly locat­ed Cana­di­an Rock­ies Chalets. Then it’s time to sam­ple some more trails on an after­noon ride on the G8/Horseshoe trail net­work, with incred­i­ble views of giant moun­tains includ­ing the Three Sis­ters and Ha Ling Peak.

Tonight, we’ll enjoy our final din­ner and post-ride cel­e­bra­tion togeth­er at a local patio in the town of Canmore.

Day 8. One More Sum­mit in Kananask­is Country!

We’ll wake up in Can­more and enjoy a sim­ple break­fast at the condo.

Then, have we got a treat for you… The ‘pot of gold’ ride, this is the incred­i­ble, amaz­ing, scin­til­lat­ing and stun­ning Prairie View/Jewel Pass trail. This super fun and scenic ride starts with a 6 km grav­el road climb to a short hike-a-bike sec­tion near the top of Bar­ri­er Moun­tain. The sweet panoram­ic view of the sur­round­ing moun­tains, prairies, and rivers will make it all worth it. We’ll be reward­ed with a fast and tech­ni­cal descent down to Jew­el Pass, an incred­i­bly fun and chal­leng­ing piece of sin­gle­track, loop­ing us back to the park­ing lot.

When it’s all over, we’ll pack up bikes and enjoy a pic­nic lunch on the shores of Bar­ri­er Lake, then fin­ish the jour­ney back to Calgary.

We can drop you off at the Cal­gary Inter­na­tion­al Air­port or at the Acclaim Hotel Cal­gary Airport.

Picture Yourself Here…

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Dates chosen: Aug. 28, 2021—Sep. 04, 2021
Skill Rating: Black Diamond
Fitness Rating: Black Diamond
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Skill Levels
Green Circle

Typically, green Rides are safe for beginners. Green Rides may have both avoidable and unavoidable obstacles. Trails are generally low grade, wide, consistent surface texture and have minimal features. You are likely to come across unavoidable obstacles 2-inches or shorter, which is small enough for mountain bike tires to simply roll over. More challenging than tarmac, but in general, a wonderful Ride for those riders new to mountain biking or looking for a casual experience.

Blue Square

In general, Blue trails are narrower than green trails, encounter unavoidable obstacles such as roots, rocks, and drops that are up to 8-inches tall. You will want to have a solid understanding of the fundamentals of mountain biking including body positions, powerful braking, cornering, riding on varied terrain, steep sections and experience riding trails that requires line choice. Airtime is not mandatory, but you will find yourself on trails with alternate lines giving you the option.

Black Diamond

The Black Diamond Rides are  suitable for riders looking for that edge. Maybe it’s the edge of a drop, the edge of a cliff, or singletrack requiring focus and fast reactions developed from extensive experience riding “the edge”. You will find yourself on steep trails of varied surfaces. In the Pacific North West that could be slick roots and loam, in Nepal you will find exposed granite in the Mustang Valley and in Guatemala it maybe narrow stairways through cliffside villages. While airtime is rarely required, the ability to find the backside or clean a tabletop should be comfortable or in a state of progress. Obstacles on Black rides are likely to be outside the range of your bikes ability to cover your goofs with its awesome suspension and grip.

Double Black Diamond

A Double Black ride is for those that already know they are looking for a Double Black. It’s going to be very hard and require advanced bike handling skills. You will find yourself on trails with sections most non-riders would look at and say, “that’s totally nuts!”. You will know how to look at a line and contemplate where it will work and where it won’t. Drops of a couple feet should be comfortable and getting your bike off the ground should feel predictable and fun.

Fitness Levels
Green Circle

You should be ready to spend 2-4 hours per day on the bike. Mileage may be up to 30km/20 miles and elevation gain will be under 500m/1500feet. On e-MTB tours, numbers will be higher, however the approximate effort would be considered similar to a standard Green Circle ride. If you get on your bike once a week, you will be just fine. However, when preparing for a Ride, you will benefit from more rides and time in the saddle.

Blue Square

Blue should be considered a good deal more effort than our Green Rides.  You should be able to handle 3 to 5 hours in the saddle covering up to 45km/30miles and be able to pull off a big day of 1000m/3000feet of elevation gain. Managing fuel is important as well.  You should have a good understanding how your body responds to multiple days on the bike. We will help with positive coaching, a manageable pace and plenty of trailside snacks.

Black Diamond

A Black Fitness ride will test you. Aside from needing to be able to manage up to 6 hours on the bike, day after day, including distance up to 50km/30miles and elevation gains up to 1750m/5000feet of climbing, you will be adding extra challenges along the route like periods of hike-a-bike and the extra effort required by the whole body to safely dance with your bike over technical terrain. Generally, riders who are up for a Black Fitness ride, likely spend time on the bike a couple times each week.

Double Black Diamond

A Double Black will be for those with the strength and endurance to get to the top of anything they want and understand the term “turning the screw”. Distance could be quite high on some routes and elevation gain numbers could hit 2000m/6000 feet+ in a day. You are likely riding multiple days a week during the dry periods and have a trainer or belong to a gym for the rest of the year.