Tumbler Ridge's sledding community has seen its share of changes over the years—and its share of challenges.
The local club was actually shut down for about a year, leaving snowmobilers without all the perks of having a groomed, organized playground to ride in. Not to be held back for long, the Tumbler Ridge Ridge Riders Snowmobile Association was soon re-established and came back with a vengeance. There are more than 500 active sledders in Tumbler Ridge, and having a club for them is an unquestionable asset, as recognized by then-president Adam Court.
Sadly, there were more challenges to follow. A few years back, a fire destroyed the Core Lodge club shelter, an unfortunate event as it was once a popular gathering place and scenic gateway to the trail networks. Snowmobilers would relax and take in the view of Kinuseo Falls and other hallmarks of this wilderness wonderland.
All was not lost, however. The Tumbler Ridge Ridge Riders, with a lot of hard work from dedicated volunteers, has rebuilt a warm-up shelter in the Core Lodge area. This location also boasts excellent signage and a large parking lot for staging. Close by, you can observe the workings of the Quintette Mine, if you peer down from the top of Windy Ridge. Leave it to the Ridge Riders to take a bad situation and create something positive from it.
The club has also spent countless hours braving the rough logging roads to rebuild a formerly broken-down shelter in its Wolverine Trail area.
The improvements keep coming, and the club's momentum shows no sign of stopping. There are currently four main routes for sledding here: Bullmoose-Windfall, Wolverine Trail, Thunder Bearhole and the Core Lodge area (which leads to Windy Ridge, Summit Meadows and Back Meadows).
Sledder-friendly is an understatement
Snowmobilers are looked at fondly in this community, and with good reason, as the sport is one of the main draws for visitors and residents alike. Having been established as a legendary sledding zone, Tumbler Ridge enjoys a substantial economic boost during the cold season—not least of all because of its typically plentiful snowfall. It is not just a tourist activity; more than 25 per cent of locals take part in the sport, and snowmobiling is the district's number one source of revenue during the winter.
What does this mean for you? Expect to be treated with warmth and hospitality when you come to ride these trails. Business owners appreciate snowmobilers coming to town and will welcome you with big smiles and excellent service.
We heavily encourage our readers to check this place out. Once you see what is on offer, you will be itching to get your Ridge Riders' membership and hit the powder. Supporting the local club is the best way to ensure that these famously fabulous riding areas remain accessible to snowmobilers. For a current price list and more information on club participation, visit the Ridge Riders membership page.
One thing has not changed: Tumbler Ridge has the honour of being one of B.C.'s top snowmobiling destinations.