A while back we picked up a Groupon for a stay at Manning Park Lodge. I’d never been to Manning Park, but had heard many good things about it from friends. The trip came just a couple of days after I moved to a new position at work, so I brought along my work buddy the lolrus who was feeling a little displaced after we moved out of the office that’s been my home for the previous five years. It turned out to be an exciting weekend for him.
Heavy fog slowed our Friday night drive through the Fraser Valley, but once we reached the mountains and turned onto the Crowsnest it was magical. A full moon hung low over the mountains, soaking the towering peaks around us in silver light. I was almost sorry to reach the lodge and leave the moon-drenched snowscape behind.
The next morning we got up bright and early and headed for the Gibsons Pass ski area.We arrived to about six inches of fresh snow off-piste, and soft-packed groomers. J picked up a rockered snowboard, and we spent the day cruising easy runs while she worked on her technique with the shorter, more forgiving board. Snow began falling heavily in the afternoon, and I cruised through the powder at the edges of the run while the lolrus got his first face shots.
Once the lifts closed we headed back to the lodge for hot tubbing, an extremely good dinner in the restaurant, and apres-ski entertainment that included darts, foosball, and a lot of good beer. The next morning we had time to fit in ice skating and a snowshoe before heading back to Van. It was a brief visit, but all three of us had a great time and I’d love to come back with more time to explore the area.