Are you dreaming of cruising down a winterly forest path, gliding between white trees? Got a hankering to climb up a snowy mountainside and enjoy splendid views from the top? Maybe you’d prefer to race across a frozen lake…. or perhaps you just want to take the kids out for a fun day filled with speed and excitement in the great outdoors.
Snowmobilers can do all this and much more in Alberta. The province offers thousands of kilometres of trails, from groomed tracks for beginners to maintained, but ungroomed trails, perfect for boondocking and camping excursions.
These are some of our favourite places to snowmobile in Alberta.
The Golden Triangle
For that quintessential snowmobile in Alberta experience, don’t miss the Golden Triangle. This famous sledding region lies between the towns of Whitecourt, Fox Creek and Swan Hills and offers more than 480 km of trails — groomed and well-maintained by a very active local club.
The Golden Triangle is home to trails for all levels of sledders. Whether you prefer flat expanses, rolling hills or forest riding, you’ll find it here. The town of Whitecourt is a snowmobiling capital. It’s one of only a few cities in Canada that allows you to ride your snowmobile through town on your way to the day’s trail.
For family rides and beginners, the Goodwin Lake trail offers lovely scenery and a leisurely ride. The Goat Creek Trail offers stunning views from a canyon lookout. Adventurous and experienced types can sled the entire Golden Triangle trail, a 350-km loop that takes about two days with multiple warm-up shelters along the way.
Set along a scenic river, Athabasca is an outdoor-lover’s haven year-round. But in the winter, the town becomes a staging area for snowmobilers. The area boasts an extensive trail network, with plenty of options for all levers of riders.
Great trails to try include 300 km of groomed track just west of Baptiste Lake, where you’ll find hills, river valleys and forests. For a shorter ride, the 45-km Bilsky Loop offers varied terrain. For a flatter ride, cruise through dense forests on the Banana Lake Trail.
Nestled in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies, Crowsnest Pass offers a mountain adventures and varying terrain. Choose from family-friendly trails suitable for beginners, to high-alpine trails for advanced sledders.
With 1,200 km of maintained trails and 200 km of groomed trails, there are endless places to explore. Along the way, five villages welcome snowmobilers. Popular Crowsnest Pass trails include Window Mountain. Just west of Coleman, a limestone arch offers perfect photo opportunities. For intermediate riders, the Lost Lake trail offers hilly stretches and plenty of tree riding.
Just 80 km south of Calgary, the Kananaskis area boasts great snowmobiling trails for beginning to intermediate riders. Just west of Longview, Cataract Creek and Etherington Creek offer a wide network of maintained trails.
Other options in Kananaskis include the Sibbald Area, which generally opens from January through March. An easy drive from Calgary, this area can get quite popular on snowy weekends.
Alberta is chock full of great places to snowmobile. If you’re wondering where to snowmobile, choose an area that’s suited to your particular skill level, and be sure to check the winter driving conditions before you go. Happy trails!