I have always loved strapping on my skis, catching an early lift and taking in a day on the mountain whether the conditions are light and fluffy or spring slush. Any day skiing is a good day. Now as a parent I still feel the same sentiments but even more as I watch our children’s faces light up as they conquer new terrain, pick up a little speed, or are finally released from the harness. It’s amazing – and it’s exhausting. We are constantly trying to balance family time with work, extracurricular activities (not to mention the FUNDRAISING they encompass), and commitment to friends, family and school. Sometimes I just want to cheat on our adventurous side a little and enjoy some relaxation – I now know we don’t have to cheat.
A short 49-minute drive from Calgary, you can do both –3 km down the road from Nakiska Ski Area is the Kananaskis Nordic Spa.
Nakiska is opening 7 days per week starting November 29th giving way to a winter full of skiing fun not too far out of the city. You don’t have to commit to a weekend away to get your family out in the mountains and on the slopes. With 3 high-speed quad chairs, 2 doubles and 2 magic carpets you are guaranteed to be whisked up the hill quickly to get more runs in, even if you aren’t the quickest down. There are ski lessons available for children and adults alike, so the parents can enjoy a few laps top to bottom on their own while the kids sharpen their skills. If those kids are getting into the teen years and the parents need a lesson or two to keep up, those are available too.
After enjoying the slopes with friends or family, there is no reason not to pop over to the spa and unwind. The hydrotherapy access is just as stated on the Kananaskis Nordic Spa’s website, “a modern alpine sanctuary.” Wrapped warmly in a luxurious tartan robe you move between pools, saunas and a steam cabin surrounded by pines dusted in snow. The winter-ready hammocks are strategically placed for you to rest comfortably between cycles, as are the Adirondack chairs gathered about crackling fires. The natural rock and beautiful landscaping leaves you uncertain of where the spa ends and the wild begins. With the delicious Two Tree Bistro mere steps away it is an easy place to spend an afternoon or evening recharging after skiing or snowboarding. (Please note to enter the Spa you must be at least 18 years old).
Offering the perfect marriage between sport and relaxation in the pristine Rocky Mountains a short drive from Calgary, this ski and soak experience will have you questioning only one thing – how many of your friends and family are going to want to come along.
Photos by Robin Laurenson & Chelsea Czibere