What’s the Best Way to Get from Calgary to Fernie?

by ampmlimo, on Mar 28, 2021 5:40:00 PM

If you want to get from Calgary to Fernie, whether its from the Calgary Airport or somewhere else in the city, it would be smart to hire professional ground transportation services. The drive to Fernie can be a tough one especially in winter when the wind blows up and the snow starts to fly. 

Private, professional transportation service is recommended for several reasons, including:

  • Traditional shuttle services are scarce for the route to Fernie, running only on a fixed schedule for a limited number of months, days & times. Furthermore, this type of service seldom guarantees comfort, availability, or highly trained professional drivers. 
  • The journey can be arduous, so driving your own party is ill-advised. Even the most seasoned drivers may find it perilous to navigate area roadways, particularly in the Crowsnest Pass area which is famous for its big winds, black ice and other extreme weather hazards. If the driver is not familiar with this specific route, there is a greater risk of running into trouble.  Hiring a professional transportation service ensures that you and your party are secure in the hands of an expert chauffeur who has knowledge of the region and specialized training to handle safety hazards.
  • The trip from Calgary Airport to Fernie requires a 3.5-hour ride, (306 km distance), so you’ll want a clean, comfortable and roomy private vehicle for your trip. With standard shuttle services, not only will you have to ride with strangers, but you’re never guaranteed to have enough space for your party (and ski equipment if you’re traveling in winter), and many of these vehicles are poorly maintained from the perspective of cleanliness and the car’s service record.

How much does it cost for transportation from Calgary Airport to Fernie?

Prices may vary between service providers, but here’s a listing of fees that represent the standard range for transportation from Calgary Airport to Fernie Alpine Resort, based on rates offered by AM PM Limo:

Cadillac XTS Sedan 

Cadillac XTS Sedan 

Chauffeured luxury vehicle suited for smaller groups of 2-4 passengers. If there are four people, the per person rate is just $148.75.

$595

Cadillac Escalade ESV

Cadillac Escalade ESV

Spacious yet elegant, and great for tours & excursions. Ideal for groups of 4-6 passengers. Again, based on four people, the rate is a very reasonable $162.50 per person.

$650

Chevrolet Mini-Bus Shuttle

Chevrolet Mini-Bus Shuttle

Spacious interior, luggage space and ease of boarding/exiting the vehicle make this the ideal transportation for 10-13 passengers. When you have a group, this is a cost-effective option. Based on 10 people, the per person price is only $82.50 each.

$825

GMC 5500 Shuttle Bus

GMC 5500 Shuttle Bus

Ample space for up to 24 passengers to ride in comfort, with extra luggage room at the rear and in overhead bins. With a full bus, the per person price is just $45.83.

$1,100

Dodge Ram Truck Stretch Limousine

Dodge Ram Truck Stretch Limousine

The first of its kind in Alberta! A Dodge Ram pick-up stretched to limousine proportions, with the half-ton rear-end enclosed for storage space. The roomy vehicle interior comfortably accommodates up to 16 passengers. Based on just 10 passengers traveling, the per person rate is only $114.90 each.

$1,149

Party Bus



Party Bus

The ultimate mode of transportation for groups of 18-30 passengers. Custom lighting effects, state-of-the-art sound system and plenty of room for moving around in the interior make this ride as extraordinary as the destination. Based on 18 people only, the out-of-pocket price per person is just $63.89.





$1,150

A few stops to make on the way from Calgary to Fernie 

For an extra fee or a tip, drivers can accommodate your wishes to stop at a couple of interesting places on the way to Fernie. Most drivers take scenic Highway 22, also called the Cowboy Highway. The three stops on the way to Fernie mentioned below are all easy to get to. 

One stop to make is at the 70-foot high Lundbreck Falls. It only requires a short amount of backtracking if you take Highway 22. The falls are pretty all year long, but you’ll probably have them to yourself in winter. They are free to visit.

On the way to Fernie, there’s a quick stop worth making at the Burmis Tree – where there is a convenient pull-off. You don’t need more than about 10 minutes. The Burmis Tree is a limber pine named after a coal mining town which stood here in the 1900’s. The tree has marked the eastern boundary of the Crowsnest Pass for some 700 years. 

The Frank Slide is also worthy of a stop. There is a place to pull over on the highway to gape at the destruction wrought in just 90 seconds on April 29, 1903. As Canada’s second largest landslide, it’s fascinating to see what transpired when part of Turtle Mountain broke off. The Frank Slide Interpretive Centre is very well done but you need at least an hour to visit. There are also lovely walking paths through the monster-sized boulders.

 
Lundbreck Falls is beautiful in any season

 Lundbreck Falls is beautiful in any season

The Burmis Tree in the Crowsnest Pass

The Burmis Tree in the Crowsnest Pass

Looking down at the Franks Slide from the top of Turtle Mountain

Looking down at the Franks Slide from the top of Turtle Mountain

What to do when you get to Fernie 

Go skiing and snowboarding at Fernie Alpine Ski Resort 

In case you haven’t seen the brochures, here’s a sneak preview of what visitors will discover at Fernie Alpine Ski Resort:

  • 2500+ acres of skiable Rocky Mountain terrain
  • 142 named ski runs and 5 alpine bowls
  • On average over 11 m (36 feet plus) of snow per season
  • A vertical drop of 1,082 m or 3550 feet
  • State-of-the-art snowmaking & grooming equipment
  • Weekly winter activities
  • Accessible snowshoeing, fat biking & cross-country skiing
  • Snow school lessons for all ages & skill levels
  • Performance Academy Adult camps taught by Level 2 & 3 pros
  • Ski & Stay packages & deals
  • Ski and Snowboard rentals

Take a look at Fernie Alpine Resort’s mountain cam for real-time area features and conditions.

Powder hounds love Fernie. It regularly gets massive dumps of snow that will put a giant smile on your face. There’s also a lot of variety in the terrain and the size and layout of the mountain means that people are willing to travel great distances to experience the Fernie stoke.

 A view of Fernie from the ski resort

 A view of Fernie from the ski resort

Visit Island Lake Lodge in summer or winter

Island Lake Lodge in winter is a fantastic destination if cat skiing or boarding appeals. Operating for more than 30 years, it’s a must-visit spot if you’re serious about skiing or boarding. Because of its location at a higher elevation than the Ferne Alpine Resort, there is even more snow to enjoy. Revel in the fabulous scenery of BC’s Lizard Range of mountains as you float down the bowls and through the glades. At the end of the ski day, relax in a sauna, enjoy their full-service spa and finish with a fine dining experience.

If you’re not a skier, there is the option in winter to take the snowcat up to the lodge, go for a snowshoe and enjoy a delicious lunch. You can follow that up with a spa service.

There are several barrel saunas at Island Lake Lodge to soothe tired muscles

There are several barrel saunas at Island Lake Lodge to soothe tired muscles

Note that in summer, Island Lake Lodge is a paradise for hikers. World-class trails are accessible from the front door. And there are enough trails, that you can choose one that suits your hiking ability. Some of the trails take you past western red cedars that are 800 years old. The most beautiful trail is the Spineback – Goldilocks combination. Allow about five hours to do the two.

Hiking Spineback Ridge near Island Lake Lodge

Hiking Spineback Ridge near Island Lake Lodge

Go cross-country skiing in Fernie 

Nordic skiers will be in heaven with Fernie’s epic snowfalls and spectacular mountain scenery. There are two areas close to historic downtown Fernie that are ideal – the Elk Valley Nordic Centre with its 10 km of groomed trails and the Montane area. It also offers 10 km of trails – some with far-reaching views of the Lizard Range. 

CA gorgeous back-drop for cross-country skiing in Fernie

A gorgeous back-drop for cross-country skiing in Fernie

Go for a tasting at Fernie Distillers 

If you have a few hours one afternoon check out Fernie Distillers, the first distillery to open in Fernie. There’s a great vibe to the place and some interesting hand-crafted spirits to try. Everything is made in small batches – with cool names like Prospector Gin, Fernie Fog and No.9 Mine Vodka.

While you’re there, check out the stills, talk to one of the few Canadian female distillers and relax on their comfortable couches, soaking in the atmosphere.

Look for handcrafted, small batch spirits at Fernie Distillers

Look for handcrafted, small batch spirits at Fernie Distillers

Go mountain biking in and around Fernie 

Fernie is a big-time mountain bike town. There’s a range of trails to suit all skill levels – and best of all you don’t have to go far from town. Most trails are cross-country style trails, but you can find great downhill trails at the Fernie Alpine Resort Bike Park. All trails save for double blacks can be ridden in either direction. You don’t have to be an expert to have fun no matter what trail you ride in town.

There are over 100 trails to ride over seven areas surrounding Fernie. Trails range from easy beginner to advanced cross-country. E- mountain bikes that are Class 1 pedal assist are allowed on the multi-use trails.

The mountain biking areas include the Community & Town Trail System, Castle Mountain, Montane, Morrissey Ridge, Mount Fernie & Mount Fernie Provincial Park, Mount Proctor and Ridgemont & Fernie Ridge. The most popular trails are those in the Ridgemont area in the southeast part of town.

Go hiking in Fernie 

You’ll find a diversity of summer hikes in the Fernie area, aside from all the great ones you can do at Island Lake Lodge. 

For an epic hike, considered one of the top wilderness trails in the country - Heiko’s Trail. It’s a 21 km grunt, and a very difficult hike that wilk take you 8 – 12 hours. For that effort you climb 1200 metres over a couple of mountain passes, and are rewarded with a giant cave, gorgeous flower filled meadows, mountains as far as the eye can see and airy ridgelines. Island Lake Lodge can help organize a guide, especially as it finishes here.

One of the top hikes close to town is Mount Fernie Ridge. It offers both big trees and mountain views – including of the Three Sisters Peaks. Round trip its an 8 km hike with a heart pounding 910 m of elevation gain. Some people turn back at the bench at about the three quarters mark, when it noticeably steepens.

For even more ideas of what to do in Fernie, especially in summer check out these 10 ideas – from rafting to bird-watching.

Old growth western red cedar tree

Old growth western red cedar tree


The Best Way to Get from Calgary to Fernie

AM PM provides first-class luxury transportation services for travel to multiple destinations throughout Alberta, including Fernie, the picturesque “hidden gem” of B.C.

Here’s what you can expect when you hire AM PM for professional private transportation services:

  • First-rate transportation to and from Fernie Alpine Ski Resort
  • Accommodation for any sized group + ski equipment
  • We will wait and meet you if your flight is delayed due to bad weather.
  • Short-notice bookings are available.
  • Courtesy airport meet & greet for domestic or international arrivals
  • We will accommodate late arrivals & early departures according to your flight schedule.
  • Reservations are flexible to account for inclement weather.
  • Experienced professional drivers with spot-free safety records.

Our reservation specialists are happy to answer any questions you may have, at any time of day or night. To make an inquiry or reserve your ride from Calgary Airport to Fernie, call 403.475.5555 and we’ll get you started on planning for your ultimate ski vacation!

Topics:Calgary TransportationFernie Ski ResortBlogCalgary Airport to Fernie

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