Quit Giving Winter the Cold Shoulder

Get out and enjoy the season with these cool activities

By: Kassandra Rossi, Contributor

You’ve got to love the outdoors to live in Thunder Bay. Students are here through the most brutal season of the year – a seemingly endless winter of crazy wind chills and huge snowfalls. But, like the locals, we endure the freezing temperatures with a determined attitude as we make Thunder Bay our home.   

Thunder Bay offers a wide variety of activities to do outside in the winter. Being primarily a hockey town, there are a number of outdoor rinks, commonly referred to as ODRs (for those of you that don’t have hockey fanatics as friends). There are 26 locations throughout the city that offer skating rinks – 36 if you count the ponds and rivers people skate on. Some locations have two or more boarded skating areas that are regularly maintained by city workers. Lakehead’s very own Lake Tamblyn is transformed into a pond for skating every winter! From clearing off the snow to flooding the ice to make sure it’s smooth, it’s a big project, and this work is greatly appreciated by everyone.

Thunder Bay also offers some of Canada’s best cross-country ski trails. Kamview Nordic Centre, just off of Highway 61 toward the border, offers 5.5 kilometres of groomed ski trails. Perfect for a short day ski, Kamview has scenic views and a strong skiing community.

Kamview volunteers also organize the Sleeping Giant Loppet, an annual ski race for everyone ages 5 and up, which takes place on March 3, 2019. The Loppet is a great way to see the Giant in the winter and watch some ski races.

For a more rural and extensive cross-country ski trail system, check out Lappe Nordic Ski Centre, 25 minutes Northwest of Thunder Bay, just off of Dog Lake Road. Its northern location means it receives more snow, earlier than Kamview. Kamview and Lappe Nordic Ski Center both have strong ties within the community, as well as friendly competing ski teams. Both locations offer students a great way to get outside, try a new activity and see more of Thunder Bay and the surrounding area.

For students interested in snowboarding or downhill skiing, Loch Lomond and Mount Baldy ski hills have spectacular views of the city and, of course, great skiing and snowboarding opportunities.

Mount Baldy is located to the East of Thunder Bay and Loch Lomond is located to the South West (you can spot it right from campus!) Gear can be rented from both locations and hills range from beginner to intermediate. There are student-run groups on campus that often organize events out on the hills and are great ways to meet other students who have similar interests.

With so many winter activities to do here in Thunder Bay, why complain about the weather when you can try something new and enjoy the day? Grab your parka, a hat, and some mitts and get out there! We all know the cold is not going away anytime soon.