Breathe – Outdoor Recreation Ideas

Breathe – Outdoor Recreation Ideas

With crystal clear lakes and rivers, richly forested landscapes, and a climate that bestows equal parts coldsmoke winters and warm sunny summers, it’s little wonder that the region is an outdoor recreational paradise. 

The steep slopes above Nelson helped to give birth to freeride mountain biking in BC and create a passionate local cycling culture. An intricate network of trails around the region caters to riders of different abilities and ambitions, from heart-pumping downhill to relaxing rail trails. Lightly trafficked winding waterfront roads offers some of Canada’s most spectacular road biking. 

Hiking enthusiasts will find everything from mellow river walks to alpine trekking. Dense forests and glacier fed waterways offer a feast for the senses. Trails near Nelson and Kaslo offer easily accessible short hikes with beautiful views, while routes further into the mountains reward intrepid explorers keen to get off the beaten path. 

Dig water sports? You’ll find plenty to choose from on Kootenay Lake and nearby rivers. With over 100km of lake and multiple waterfront provincial parks, Kootenay Lake is a paradise for paddlers, swimmers, and sun seekers on sandy beaches. Don’t miss the world’s longest free ferry on Kootenay Lake to take in the full 360 degree views. 

Come winter, that famous Kootenay coldsmoke snow and Nelson’s ski town charm beckons downhill skiers, boarders and nordic skiers. Mild temperatures and consistent snow create the perfect combination for ski enthusiasts. Choose from nearby nordic trails, accessible backcountry ski touring, world-class in resort skiing at Whitewater, or extraordinary cat ski operators that have earned the area the designation as the Cat Ski Capital of the World

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Read our visitors guide online or order a copy of the official visitor's guide and map for our region.