The Alpine Grind in Rossland is an excellent venue to start your day because it’s a community landmark where residents and visitors alike enjoy locally roasted coffee as well as hearty meals such as the popular frittata breakfast bagel. From there it’s an easy five-kilometre drive north along Hwy 3B to the Black Jack Ski Club trails.
Established in 1983, Black Jack ranks as one of the best nordic ski facilities in the region because of its impeccable daily grooming and variety of trails. It’s so good, in fact, that about every sixth Rosslander is a member of the club. There are about 50 kilometres of both classic and skate skiing trails here as well as a biathlon range, three warming huts, a two-kilometre loop specifically for dog owners, and 2.5 kilometres of lit trails for night skiing. Beginners typically do the 5.5-kilometre Gibbard’s Trail, stopping in at the Torresan’s Cabin, and then return on the Roger’s Route to the Rich Thorpe Cabin by the main parking area. Alternatively, they’ll park five kilometres further up Hwy 3B at the northern lot and do the three-kilometre-long Biathlon Loop.
Intermediate and advanced skiers usually park at the main lot and connect a variety of loops such as Ophir, with its steep hill at the half-way point, and the delightfully named Mugwump and Spitzee trails. Once you’ve had your fill of Black Jack, head back to Rossland for lunch at Clancy’s where you’ll be pleasantly surprised by their unique take on fried pickles done in sourdough batter and poutine made with chorizo.