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Cross-country skiing, both nordic and skate, is plentiful. Groomed or ungroomed trails, the region has wilderness or resort skiing, backcountry loops over forestry roads and abandoned railroads, or gentle golf course trails with incredible mountain vistas.

To see a little more of the trails view our "Why do it?" video.


The Nelson Nordic Ski Club (NNSC) is Nelson's cross-country skiing hub. Just 10 minutes south of town, they offer more than 25 km of groomed trails for both skate skiers and classic skiers, from beginner to expert level. Facilities include two warming huts, washrooms, and a lit loop for night skiing.

Another Nelson option—dog friendly—is the Nelson "Rails-to-Trails" path. A former Canadian Pacific Railway line, this wonderful section of the Trans Canada Trail is a designated park with gorgeous refurbished trestle bridges. Occasionally, the several kilometres between Cottonwood Lake and Nelson are groomed for classic skiing. Access is just a 10 minute walk from downtown.


10 minutes east from the Nelson Nordic Ski Club (see above) is Whitewater Ski Resort. Although known for downhill skiing, they have 16 km of expertly groomed and track-set cross-country skiing trails with spectacular views of Ymir peak.


Balfour Golf Course features gentle slopes and rolling terrain. Tracks are often set by the locals, so you should find lots of choices to explore on your own.