Alternative Winter Activities at Blue Mountain

winter activites, blue mountain, canada, ontario, outdoors, hiking, lookout, scenic caves, trails, hiking, winter, snow

Were any of you watching the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics? The winter Olympics are always an exciting time because Canada tends to dominate in this season.  Go Canada Go! Watching the winter Olympics have inspired me to really get out there and enjoy the winter season. Every year I proclaim how much I hate winter and hole myself up indoors for the next 4 months. This year is different. It’s all about taking ourselves out of our comfort zones and trying new things.

Toboganning

When we think of winter activities the first things that come to mind are snowboarding and skiing. If you remember our last visit to Blue Mountain during the summer (click here to read all about it), I am incredibly afraid of heights. I’m all about facing my fears, but baby steps are in order. This time was my first time visiting Blue Mountain during the winter and while the boys went snowboarding the girls went tobogganing.

toboganning, highland nordic, blue mountain, winter activities, what to do, canada, outdoorsWe had gone to the Blue Mountain Activity Centre in the village and purchased a $20 ticket for a 3 hour session of tobogganing. This included a shuttle bus ride to the site at Highlands-Nordic, 3 hours of tobogganing plus rental of toboggans and a free hot chocolate. As we drove up to the hill we laughed at how tiny the hill looked and wondered if it was even going to do anything for us. This attitude changed drastically once we had walked up to the top of the hill with our toboggans and sleds in tow. Mind you, I am really afraid of heights. I never was as a kid, but this fear has suddenly emerged in my adult years. However since I am trying to face my fears we eventually slid down the hill screaming the whole way. It was super fun! Felt like a kid again going up and down the hills. Also might I add, walking up those hills is a killer work out for your legs! WOW!

*Suggestion Alert* If you decide to do this activity and don’t mind the drive (it’s about 20 minutes away from Blue Mountain), I would suggest just going there on your own. It only costs $3 to use the hills. Just bring your own toboggan and you’re good. The $20 seemed like a hefty price for what it was.

Chilling in a Cozy Suite

After our wonderful bout of good old winter fun, we headed over to our hotel. We stayed at the Georgian Manor Resort.  The resort is less than a 5 minute drive from the village. Walking in the resort seems a bit dated but we were pleasantly surprised when we walked into the suite.

georgianmanorresortPhoto Courtesy of Georgian Manor Resort

We stayed in a 2 bedroom suite and let me tell you this is probably the biggest suite I have ever stayed in. My friend and I commented on how it was bigger than her current condo and my previous apartment. We quickly opened a bottle of red and sunk into the cozy couches in front of the warm fireplace. We thought it would be funny to play a prank on the boys, who were still out boarding, by sending them a text message warning them of the “less than spectacular and tiny accommodations” that was in store for them. They totally fell for it and the looks on their faces were priceless. Haha.

Dinner in the Village

blue mountain, night, winter, snowboarding, skiing, village, canada, ontarioWe headed out for dinner in the village at Magnone’s Italian Kitchen. We had just randomly wandered around the village and decided this was something worth checking out. Thankfully it did not disappoint and was mighty delicious. We returned to our suite and ended the night with a good old game of Killer Kings.

Snowshoeing

canada, snowshoe, trails, winter, scenic caves, adventures, blue mountainThe following day we went for snowshoe hike. None of us had ever gone snowshoeing so we were all game to try something new. We found our way to Scenic Caves Adventures which is just a short drive up the mountain from the village. For full day access to the trails and equipment rental it came to about $35.

blue mountain, scenic caves,  winter, suspension bridge, trails, We decided to keep it light and fun and took one of the easier and faster trails. Yes it was breezy alright until we came to this crazy suspension bridge. Remember I’m afraid of heights! And no this was not a surprise. I knew what I was getting myself into as I had done research on this particular area, however in the spirit of facing my fears and going on adventures I was up for the challenge.

blue mountain, scenic caves, suspension bridge, winter, snowshoe, trailsSure I whimpered and slowly shuffled my way across the bridge, however that is not the point. The point is that I did it! Yay for me!

Upon exiting the bridge, we came across a couple of senior citizens. They had just completed the next trail we were about to embark on. Seeing these active seniors gave us all the courage to carry on in to the deep woods. I mean if people in their sixties could do it so could we right?

snow angels, winter, blue mountain, scenic caves, snowshoe, trailsUhh….scratch that last comment! That was exhausting! We decided to take a break and make some snow angels. Now that was refreshing.

snowshoeing, trails, winter, blue mountain, scenic caves, trailsThe snow started coming down real blizzard like in the middle of our hike but we welcomed it with open arms as we were working up a sweat. Who knew how tiring this was. Ken found a walking stick. Don’t worry he didn’t harm any trees, this branch was already lying there by itself. Never break a branch off a tree guys!

look out, mountain, blue mountain, forest, hiking, snowshoeing, scenic caves, trails, winter, canada, ontarioAfter two hours of snowshoeing we finally made it to the top and what a view! Apparently during the summer you can zip line from the top all the way to the bottom across the canopy of the forest. Some people commented on how they wanted to come back in the summer and does this. I said I was facing my fears but I’m not ready to pile drive straight into them just yet. Baby steps, people!

After our hike we said our goodbyes and went our separate ways. It was a super fun weekend filled with many firsts. Many like to escape from the winter to warmer destinations. I say throw in a random weekend filled with fun winter activities as well to help combat the winter blahs. As long as you bundle up and stay warm, I guarantee you’ll really enjoy yourselves.

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram! I tend to post photos of what I’m currently up to and write blog posts later when I have time.

 

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For more reading on Blue Mountain trips:

Our First Anniversary at Blue Mountain