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There's a world of outdoor adventures to be had in the North Okanagan

Vernon was built for winter exploration. A lot of people may think that winter activities are limited to skiing, snowboarding and skating, but you’d be surprised that there are many other outdoor hobbies to experiment with that are often overlooked.

From tubing to fat biking, there’s something new to try all winter long when you’re lucky enough to call Vernon your playground. Here are some fun outdoor activities to try out this winter.

Slide, spin and swerve on a tube

<who>Photo credit: Greg Huszar</who>

Here’s something fun for the entire family: tubing!

Head up to SilverStar Mountain Resort and enjoy a whole section of a ski resort devoted entirely to inner tubing, complete with four separate lanes and tube lifts!

Fly down the run in a truck-tire-sized tube (with safety handles, of course) for the day. The hill is safe and controlled, so it’s the perfect environment for the kids.

You don’t even have to carry your tube up the hill because the lift will pull you in your tube up the side of the mountain so you can relax before another exciting journey down the hill.

Once you’re done you can head over to the Tube Town Cafe to warm up with a beverage and snack. Sit around the fire and roast some marshmallows while you enjoy a hot chocolate or delicious coffee made from an Okanagan favourite, Cherry Hill coffee.

Where you can walk, you can snowshoe

<who>Photo credit: Yana Crane Photography</who>

Vernon's geography is immaculate for snowshoeing, especially along the Grey Canal Trail, Predator Ridge or Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park. You can rent snowshoes from Stussi Sport or Valhalla Pure Outfitters or bring your own to explore these winter wonderlands on foot.

If you’re wanting to get off the beaten track, grab your own snowshoes and explore some of the Vernon area's best trails. If you can walk, you can snowshoe.

Feel the crunch of snow beneath your feet as you snowshoe along the serene trails in and around Vernon. If you can walk, you can snowshoe. It’s a great way to see an area you’re already familiar with in a brand-new way.

Enjoy some world-class cross-country skiing

<who>Photo credit: Niall Pinder</who>

Vernon is considered one of the top places to cross-country ski in British Columbia. That’s because it has two great places for you to get out in the fresh, crisp air and take part in some excellent cross-country skiing.

There are over 100 km of combined cross-country trails in Vernon, so if you've ever wanted to try cross-country skiing or you’re already an avid skier, this is the place!

Head to SilverStar Mountain Resort or Sovereign Lake Nordic Club for perfectly-groomed trails and stunning views. You can also rent equipment or take a lesson if needed. The trails are perfect for experts and beginners alike.

Have some fun on fat bikes

<who>Photo credit: Robb Thompson</who>

Do you love biking so much that you want to ride year-round? Well good news, you can!

That’s right, you can bike in the winter too because when mountain biking season ends, fat biking season begins!

Fat bikes are mountain bikes that are modified for riding in the snow. These bikes get their name from the wide tires that make them perfect for riding in the snow.

If you’re interested in trying out this lesser-known winter sport, head up to SilverStar Mountain Resort or one of our amazing provincial parks.

SilverStar has dedicated fat biking trails and provides bike rentals, and Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park and Ellison Provincial Park have a vast network of bike trails that can be used in the winter for fat biking. To see a variety of trails to try out, click here.

Grab your skates and glide across the ice

<who>Photo credit: Ryan and Danelle Fouché</who>

During the summer, locals love to dive into the lakes. During the winter, they like to glide across them on a pair of skates.

If you don’t own your own skates, you can rent some up at Silverstar and enjoy a day sailing along Brewers Pond. The one-hectare natural skating surface is about as good as it gets for outdoor skating, plus there's an outdoor fire, festive music and beautiful lights.

If you do own a pair of skates (or plan on picking up a pair this winter), you put your skating skills to the test on one of the lakes that freeze over like Swan Lake or the shores of Kin Beach and enjoy the stunning scenery, too.

Prefer skating on a rink? Head over to the Centennial Outdoor Rink located at the Rec Center for an outdoor or indoor experience. You can check out the skating schedule here. Some other indoor options include the Priest Valley Arena and Kal Tire Place.

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