An introduction to the growing sport of snowshoeing for women and girls, with an exploration of the Mount Ottomite Trail.
The Ottomite Trail offers moderate terrain for beginner and intermediate snowshoers, passing through beautiful old-growth mountain hemlock forest and offering spectacular views of the smooth granite peaks that surround the Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area.
A key goal of this program is to bring more women and girls into nature, giving them skills and confidence to enjoy outdoor winter adventure. We encourage women participants to invite a daughter, niece, or young friend (aged 13 to 18) along on the trip!
You’ll enjoy this fun day in the mountains, in the company of female leaders who will share their knowledge and experience in a comfortable, friendly setting.
Some cool stuff you’ll learn…
Leaders will show you tips for safe winter travel including avalanche safety. They’ll also share their knowledge of local plants and animals and their strategies for winter survival.
Comments from previous women’s snowshoe programs:
“Awesome leaders, very encouraging for (a) slowpoke like me!!!!”
“HMC staff provided excellent guidance… Superb leadership.”
“Everything was well thought out.”
“The back country expertise of the group leaders was commendable. The preparation of the organization for the outing’s safety, comfort and learning was of the highest quality.”
“Awesome information about trees, super interesting about avalanche features.”
“Excellent organization, safety, information and great spirit!”
While the risk of virus transmission is relatively low in outdoor settings, we ask all participants to practice social distancing during our programs. Please bring a mask to wear during program registration or whenever circumstances bring you closer than 2 metres from someone outside your social bubble.
Participants must be in reasonably good physical condition, and there will be lots of opportunities to rest and enjoy the surroundings as you climb. Terrain is moderate, ascending 272 metres (890 feet) over 4 km of distance. Round-trip distance is 8 km, but participants can choose to travel a shorter distance if fitness holds them back from reaching the summit.
9:00 AM – Gather at the Hope Recreation Centre, sign legal waivers
9:15 AM – Leave Hope and drive east 46 km on Highway-5 to Exit # 217
10:00 AM – Arrive at Exit #217, Zopkios Rest Area
10:30 AM – Begin ascent of Mount Ottomite by snowshoe
12:30 PM – Lunch on Mount Ottomite
3:30 PM – Return to parking lot
4:30 PM – Arrive back in Hope
Participants must arrange their own transportation.
Participants will gather at the Rec. Centre (1005 – 6th Avenue in Hope), and convoy in vehicles up Highway-5 to the trailhead (Exit #217, 46 km east of Hope).
How to Find Zopkios Rest Area Parking Lot: Drive northeast out of Hope on Highway-5 for approximately 50 km. After driving through the Great Bear Snow Shed, start looking on your right for the highway exit into the Zopkios Rest Area – NOTE – THE EXIT SIGN IS MISSING DURING WINTER MONTHS, so the exit will be unmarked by any sign! Be sure to take the FIRST EXIT you see on your RIGHT after driving through the Great Bear Snow Shed. Washrooms are available at the Zopkios Rest Area.
- Snowshoes (bring your own or borrow from us)
- Two ski poles per person – optional, but greatly improves stability
- Lunch and high-energy snack food
- Water (at least 1 litre per person)
- Hand sanitizer and COVID-19 mask
- Winter boots or hiking boots (no runners please)
- Warm winter clothes, including jacket, nylon snow pants, gloves, toque, warm socks
- Sunglasses, camera, binoculars
- Foam pad to sit on in the snow
- Snow shovel if you’ve got one (Hope Mountain Centre will bring some too)
- Knapsack to carry all your gear
Everyone age 19 & over must sign a liability waiver form in order to participate in this program. Please take the time to read this form because you must understand and agree to it when you sign it. By signing it you are waiving certain rights, including the right to sue. These forms will be available to sign when you check in. Please seek legal counsel if you have any questions.
Everyone age 18 & under must have an informed consent form signed by their parent or legal guardian in order to participate. Please contact us if you need this form prior to arrival at this program.
Space is limited and there may be a waiting list, so please let us know immediately if you must cancel.
With consideration of COVID-19 global pandemic, our registration fee and equipment rental fee will be fully refunded for cancellations due to health reasons. We ask every participant to self assess for symptoms before participating and please stay home if you are feeling unwell. You must call 604-869-1274 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to be eligible for a refund.
A program may be cancelled at the discretion of HMCOL. If a program is cancelled, participants will receive a full refund of program and equipment fees.
Please be aware that our programs run regardless of weather conditions, unless we determine that it will affect the safety of participants and/or equipment.
Our outdoor programs
Hope Mountain Centre maintains an excellent safety record. Due to the nature of outdoor programs, these events do involve some personal risk. Hope Mountain Centre assumes no responsibility for personal injury or damage to personal property. We will require each participant to sign a liability release and assumption of risk form before participating in this program. Please be aware that activities typical of this program involve many risks, dangers and hazards including, but not limited to: accidents which occur during transportation or travel to and from events; slips and falls; loss of balance; impact, cold water immersion; repetitive strain injuries; dislocated shoulders; hypothermia, frostbite, sunburn; changing and inclement weather conditions including storms, blizzards, whiteouts and high wind; steepness of terrain, tree wells, crevasses; avalanches, cornices, landslides and falling ice, snow and objects; encounters with domestic or wild animals; negligence on the part of releasees and other participants.
This is an inclusive program and we welcome all those who self identify as female.
While we love animals of all kinds, we ask that you please leave your pet at home.