10 Canadian Winter Activities That You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

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Sport and outdoor activities are an important part of daily life for Canadians. Although the summers are short and the winters are unbearably long, Canada’s inhabitants are already used to making the most of their circumstances and the large open spaces which they use to change the snow into a recreational area. For this reason, winter sports and activities are practiced throughout the country. What are you waiting for to start your new winter adventure? Get your luggage ready, sort out your ETA Canada permit and reserve your flight as soon as possible!

Ice hockey is the national sport and almost all children play it in school at some time. Also, there are many ski slopes, frozen lakes and ponds for skating and mountains to climb in the snow. However, in Canada there are lots more fun things to do in the winter apart from skiing, skating and playing ice hockey. Recently, various activities and extreme sports have started appearing. These activities offer the best of winter together with the opportunity to spend time with your family and friends.

Here’s a list of them:

1. Dog sledging

Originally thought of centuries ago, the idea of using sledges pulled by dogs to move around came about due to the need for transport. Nowadays, mushing or dog sledging, is a recreational activity which uses trained Siberian husky dogs.

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2. Snowshoeing

Normally, snowshoes are used to walk in steep snowy areas. However, nowadays these boots are not only used for hiking, but also for races. In the last decade, a series of snowshoe running races known as the “The Yeti” have been created, in the provinces of Alberta, British Colombia and Quebec.

3. Downhill Ice cross

This is already considered to be an extreme winter sport. Downhill ice cross consists of a vertical drop in a walled track with sharp turns. It is similar to ski and snowboard races but with ice skates.

4. Curling

Curling is a team sport, very similar to bowling but played on a sheet of ice. The game consists of the team members sliding eight large granite stones towards a target, helped by the other players sweeping brooms in its path.

5. Baseboarding

Baseboarding is an activity which was created recently in the Whistler Olympic park. This fun game can be played by children and adults alike and consists of sliding downhill on boards with handles at high speed.

See also: 8 reasons to visit the Yukon region.

6. Snowtubing

Although it may seem like a child’s activity, snowtubing is actually loved by adolescents and adults.  Snowtubing consists in sliding down snow slopes on an inflatable float at high speed.

7. Skijoring

This winter sport is a hybrid between mushing and skiing. In other words, a person on skis is pulled at high speed by a horse or by trained dogs. Races have always been very popular in Scandinavia, but it has not had much success in Canada.

8. Snowkiting

As its name indicates, snowkiting is sliding on the snow on a board while being pulled by a kite. It is basically kiteboarding on snow and lessons to learn this activity are taught in various snowy areas in Canada.

9. Skeleton

Like bobsleighing, the skeleton is an Olympic winter sport which consists of going downhill on a flat sledge which looks like a human skeleton. It is an individual sport and unlike other sledging activities it has no steering wheel or rudder to steer it.

10. Luge

Luge is another Olympic winter sport. The luge, or light sled is made of a small shell with sharp skates on each side. It is normally a team sport and the pilot changes the direction using straps attached to the front, since there is no steering wheel or brakes.

What are you waiting for to start your new winter adventure? Get your luggage ready, sort out your ETA Canada permit and reserve your flight as soon as possible!