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he crown prince of Norway-along with his bodyguards-showed up at this resort last winter, attracted by word of high-alpine adventure skiing. Located in southeast British Columbia, the resort is approximately 3 hours by car from Calgary, Alb., 4 1/2 hours from Spokane, Wash., and 2 hours from Missoula, Mont. Locals’ assessment: epic snow and a lifetime of terrain, especially if you hike along the ridges. Nearly 30 feet of powder falls annually over Fernie’s five bowls, which are surrounded by sawtooth-sharp peaks. The open slopes funnel into trails through trees and glades in a 2,816-vertical-foot downhill. The number of skiers who rode the nine lifts doubled last year, so beds can be scarce in the growing-but still small-base village and the former coal-mining town of Fernie, 3 miles away. Kimberley Alpine Resort is only a 1 1/2-hour drive from Fernie Alpine Resort and Banff is 3 hours away.
Insider’s Tip Swing by the takeout window at the Energy Zone for a $1.70 BLT, and eat it on the lifts.
Great Deal Get three nights’ lodging at the Cornerstone Lodge, located at the resort’s base, and three days’ lifts starting at $350 per person, double occupancy. Lift and lodging prices in the town of Fernie start at $153.
Vital Stats Skiable acres: 2,500; number of lifts: 9; vertical feet: 2,816; average annual snowfall: 350 inches; lift ticket price: $31.25.
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