The Lake Keeps Winter in Motion By Carol Patterson
When other Canadians burrow inside during the coldest days of the year, Columbia Valley residents and visitors layer up and head to the Winter In Motion festival.
For the third year valley lovers celebrates winter with four months of outdoor recreation, food and toe-tapping tunes. In January when temps are coolest – and ice the thickest – Lake Windermere is the place to be.
For golf lovers a chance to swing the clubs at the Kinsmen Snow Golf tournament promises a new view of the lake. The ‘greens’ are ploughed, pins are ringed with spray paint, and golfers use coloured balls to find them on the snowy course. Past years have seen golfers pulling ‘carts’ with barbeque grills and couches.
Foodies will enjoy delectable culinary treats from valley restaurants at the Invermere Snowflake Festival that kicks off the curling at Bonspiel on the Lake. Sign up your own team or cheer on the athletes hurrying hard on the black ice.
Fishermen missing the thrill of the fish chase can shake off the rust at the Kinsmen 18th Annual Fishing Derby. Even if you don’t fish you’ll enjoy the festival atmosphere amongst the ice huts. Don’t be surprised to see campfires on the ice (don’t worry they are set up not to burn through) but take time to ask anglers their strategies for catching the big one!
On the last weekend of January the Columbia Valley Rockies Pond Hockey tournament attracts fans of Canada’s game. The sound of blades flashing over the ice and pucks smacking off wooden sticks with Purcell mountain backdrop brings hockey to life in a way no television screen can. With no goalies or age categories the games will entertain the whole family.
So get your winter in motion and head to the lake in January. Check out the festival site for the full list of events.