Friday, April 25, 2003

Canada - world’s winter adventure destination!

This past month I was fortunate to be invited to be a part of a winter adventure travel workshop in Whitehorse. I had never been to the Yukon and was excited to get a chance to head to the far northwest of Canada.

The workshop, called Winter Change, brought together 80 tourism professionals from all across Canada to test and refine a process to support the development of new and innovative winter tour products. We were given the task of creating new Canadian winter products that would be brought to market in 2007 and tweaked and polished in time for the 2010 winter Olympic Games in Vancouver/ Whistler. It was wonderful to interact with winter professionals from other parts of Canada and with people who work in both private and public sector. We were challenged to look and change our existing business paradigm and look at the future with a new perspective.

Our specific work group created innovative and wild winter products including scuba diving beneath the ice and an urban Canadian winter experience exhibit that would offer city dwellers a chance to step into winter and see, smell and touch a Canadian winter. It was motivating to be among passionate winter enthusiasts and we all came away with the realization that Canada is a world leader when it comes to winter adventure product and we need to be more proud of it!!!

Highlights included: seeing the northern lights every night, a snowmobile trip out to High Lake with Mark from Up North Adventures. The Yukon’s big valleys are awesome. Another day - I took a drive through the White pass and down to Skagway Alaska with Del Rollo from Jackson-Triggs and Richard from Timmins. Del knows all things about wine and has got some great culinary tourism packages in Niagara. Richard owns the Cedar Meadows Resort in Timmins with a virtual game farm out the back including Moose, Caribou.
Our day trip was fantastic. It was amazing to see the change in climate as we drove through the pass and down to the ocean. Here are a few shots.

I highly recommend a Yukon winter trip to anyone who has a big taste for adventure. My 6 days were a just a sample and I plan on returning for a three week trip to the St Elias range in the next few years.

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