Ontario’s Lake Country is basking in an old-fashioned Canadian winter. So, why not embrace the spirit of the season and get outside and enjoy Mother Nature’s bounty! In Ontario’s Lake Country, lots of snow translates into lots of opportunity to engage in quintessential Canadian activities such as snowshoeing, skating, snowmobiling, skiing, ice-fishing, tobogganing … you are limited only by your imagination.
For those who are active and enjoy the serenity of the great outdoors, snowshoeing and skating options abound. Fern Resort, a popular family-oriented resort just down the road from Casino Rama, now boasts an idyllic 1.5-kilometre skating trail that allows skaters to soak in the natural countryside where wildlife roams. And for a magical experience, try the trail at night when it’s lit by the glow of Tiki torches that create a memorable atmosphere. The resort has special packages that allow visitors to enjoy the trail, their trademark dining options and accommodations. Check them out: http://www.fernresort.com/SkatingTrail.html
Hardwood Ski and Bike has 11 kilometres of snowshoe trails and more than 40 kilometres of groomed cross-country trails that traverse the hilly Oro Moraine. It’s a world-class venue with a café and fully-stocked retail shop that has hosted international competitions, but it also boasts a variety of terrain and trails that appeal to first-timers and veterans alike. Snowshoers love the facility’s famous moonlight fondue events! And if you don’t have your own skis or snowshoes, you can rent the latest gear and get helpful tips from the experienced staff who have a lifetime of advice they are willing to share.
Horseshoe Resort also boats three different routes for snowshoe enthusiasts in addition to 45 kilometres of cross-country ski trails through the Copeland Forest, 29 downhill runs and a redesigned terrain park. With a range of accommodations and eateries, the Oro-Medonte resort is a favourite of outdoor enthusiasts.
At Mount St. Louis Moonstone, skiers can sweep down 36 different slopes, snowboard at two half pipes and three terrain parks. “There’s no escaping winter, so why not get out and have fun?” says Sarah Huter, director of marketing and promotions at Mount St. Louis Moonstone. “There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing. So, dress in layers, put on your waterproof ski pants and let our instructors do the rest.”
With snow falling almost every day, this winter is also an ideal time to rev up the snowmobile and revel in a time-honoured Canadian activity. The Orillia District Snowmobile Club, the largest in Ontario’s Lake Country, ensures almost 300 kilometres of trails – from rolling hills to farmers’ fields and old rail lines – are groomed and ready. The wide trails allow riders to enjoy the elements and the sights; large map-boards help direct visitors to must-see spots, restaurants, fuel stops and other amenities.
Craig Nicholson, the Intrepid Snowmobiler widely regarded as the authority on the sport, loves hitting the trails in Ontario’s Lake Country. “Orillia is the best staging destination close to the GTA … you can come for three or four days and not ride the same trail twice,” he said. “In addition, Orillia is a full-service town. Gas, hotels and restaurants are all accessible via trails; the trail goes right through town.”
For something a little different, Windrift Kennels provides dog sled rides and dog sled tours in the wintry months. The enterprise is located near Horseshoe Resort and Carriage Ridge Resort and also provides its services to guests at Fern Resort, which is located just a few kilometres from Casino Rama.
Perhaps you’ve never enjoyed ice fishing. If you want to give it a try, A Breath of Fresh Air provides fish hut rentals on Lake Couchiching, where you can dip your line into the chilly waters and, if you’re lucky, reel in a tasty perch or bass from the clear, clean lake.
Mother Fudruckers Farm, located just outside Orillia, offers old-fashioned outdoor experiences for modern families. During winter months, their majestic, black Percheron horses can draw people on small intimate sleigh rides. Larger sleighs that can seat groups of 15 people can also be taken through the 146 acres of snow-laden forest located on the farm. Nothing says winter like a snowy sleigh ride!
When you need a break from the great outdoors, you can always check out what’s billed as The Great Indoors at Casino Rama or visit one of the region’s iconic cultural destinations such as the Stephen Leacock Museum, the Orillia Museum of Art and History, the Orillia Opera House, the Peter Street Arts District or any of the countless other destinations in the area.
Come spend a day, a weekend or much longer in Ontario’s Lake Country by taking advantage of our specially-tailored winter packages and embrace winter and all the fun the season brings in Ontario’s Lake Country.
Family Day and March Break are ideal times to come and embrace winter in Ontario’s Lake Country where Bayview Wildwood and Fern Resort, a pair of family-owned and family-oriented facilities, have unique packages on tap. Check them out: https://orillialakecountry.ca/holiday-escapes-packages/
There is also an array of winter fun packages that will allow you to enjoy the area’s diverse entertainment, attractions and savour the authentic flavour of winter at destinations such as Casino Rama, Mount St. Louis Moonstone, Horseshoe Resort and Hardwood Ski and Bike. Orillia’s Stone Gate Inn, for example, has a ski, tubing and snowboarding package, while Horseshoe Resort has both ski-and-stay and ski-and-dine packages. Casino Rama has developed a special deal for snowmobilers and a package aimed at skiers, while Bayview Wildwood Resort also offers fun weekend getaways. Why not have some fun this winter? Check out your options: https://orillialakecountry.ca/winter-fun-packages/
Whether you simply enjoy a breathtaking winter vista while walking on local trails or hike through Scout Valley or Grant’s Woods, try tobogganing on local hills or hit the trails and slopes of the popular destinations that help define Ontario’s Lake Country, it’s time to embrace winter! What are you waiting for?