Mountain bikers who have enjoyed their time on the trails around Fernie may not be pleased with the approaching colder weather that will mark an end to the season. They may even have been experiencing the doldrums which occur when conditions are not quite ready for them to leave the previous season, but are too early to embark on the next season of skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, dog sledding in their Fernie winter wonderland.
There is no “off season” for Fernie weather, particularly its winter weather. Case in point: Have you noticed how Fernie is being transformed on Second Avenue, Fernie Museum, Fernie Courthouse, City Hall, and Coal Creek barn, into the snowy locations of a new family Christmas movie, Disney’s Santa Pups? What biker or snow bunny would not enjoy Merry Christmas banners strung across the street, candy canes in October, fluffy white puppies or fake, machine-made snow? (film crews consider the disadvantages of having too much snow when they’re trying to film) They may even enjoy donning ski jackets to act as extras, joining local fellow skaters acting as extras in the new ice rink being built outside Coal Creek barn. If they don’t get into the film, they still might like to watch for well-known cast members such as Charlie’s Angel actress, Cheryl Ladd (Mrs. Claus) or Seinfeld actor Danny Woodburn (Santa’s head elf).
Winter was recently recreated in Fernie In 2009. Fernie locals donned their own retro ski jackets to appear alongside star, John Cusac, in the movie, Hot Tub Time Machine, filmed at the Fernie Alpine Resort, aka Kodiak Valley ski resort. The now-famous hot tub from the movie, which was used to transport four men to the 1980s, can be rented at the Timber Chalet.
Last November, huge avalanches were created and filmed around Fernie for the epic thriller, Inception, that starred Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen Page, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Ken Watanabe. Now what frustrated mountain biker would not trade his or her “off season” for a chance meeting with one of the stars or crew in Fernie’s restaurants or hotels?
So, don’t fret, Fernie-ites, for winter is never far away. Release of the Fernie-made movies will soon be at a theatre near you or on DVD, allowing you to enjoy views of your local terrain over and over. Or, during this “off season”, count the few days left before opening day (first week in December, weather permitting) of the resort’s 50th year, and a chance to shoosh down the most ski runs (140) in the Rockies, on the most snow in the Rockies, enjoying the most vertical in the Rockies, making laps on the only new lift in the BC Rockies-- the Polar Peak Lift.