About Fernie Snowmobile Association

About the Fernie Snowmobile Association

groomer1British Columbia is a land of supernatural splendor, where the wild meets the wild within us. Fernie Snowmobile Association members are dedicated mountain enthusiasts at heart. We understand what a great opportunity and privilege it is to serve as stewards to some of the best sledding terrain in the Canadian Rockies. Our mission is to maintain, protect, and secure this recreational resource for the future of our community and its visitors.

As a backdrop for world class outdoor opportunities, Fernie attracts recreationalists from around the globe who contribute to our eclectic Rocky Mountain culture. Sledders, snowshoers, fat bikers, skiers and snowboarders all utilize over 160 kilometers of FSA maintained trails and three day use cabins as gateways to their mountain adventures. Snowmobiling’s growing popularity is creating vibrant experiences for residents and tourists alike, jobs in support sectors, and revenue to local businesses. The Fernie Snowmobile Association works cooperatively with other user groups, commercial businesses and government agencies to ensure balanced land use agreements that contribute to a safe and enjoyable mountain experience for all backcountry users.


HartleyStagingArea(1)The Fernie Snowmobile Association was formed as a unified voice on March 1st, 1990 to ensure the continuance of the sport of snowmobiling, to enhance the public image of the sport of snowmobiling, and as a social club for snowmobile enthusiasts. We are primarily a volunteer group that commits time, energy, and personal resources year round to support club efforts. Corporate sponsorship, organized events, trail pass sales, donations and annual government grants provide direct revenue which permits the continued organized efforts required for maintaining operations, trail networks, and cabin systems for the public.

The FSA is steered by a Board of Directors and supported by a strong membership base who meet once a month to discuss operations and direction. Member committees provide detailed task force functions and feedback on activities such as grooming, firewood stocking, events, signage programs, and cabin maintenance. Volunteers are always welcome!


2020-2021 BOARD OF DIRECTORS

President: Justin Boehm
Vice President: Dave Hozjan
Treasurer: Steve Kelly
Secretary: Nicole Matei

Directors: Wayne Stamler (SnowDrags), Matt Dolbec (Maintenance), Mark Paul Koeman (Cabins), Brayden Shepherd (Corbin)

The Board of Directors holds a Duty of Care to act honestly, diligently, to excercise power, and to to adhere to applicable laws and governing documents of the society. They must act in the best interests of the organization, holding significant responsibilities including setting objectives, overseeing fiscal accountability, ensuring laws are followed, and monitoring performance of the Fernie Snowmobile Association on behalf of its members. All Directors must be in good standing, maintain amicable relationships with stakeholders, are prepared for meetings to conduct board business, and willing to volunteer time in support of the FSA mission.

Elections are held each year at the Annual General Meeting. Executive positions are in two year alternating terms (elections for President / Secretary one year and Vice President / Treasurer the next). Executive Board members should have demonstrated significant leadership within the FSA, have solid understanding of the FSA bylaws and Societies Act, understand the basics of financial statements, and be willing to volunteer significant time during their tenure. Directors at large are elected each year. New directors are always welcome and should be prepared to attend at least 70% of meetings and events though the year. Nominations packages may be received by emailing info@ferniesnowmobile.com. Elections and meetings follow Roberts Rules of Order and the BC Societies Act but are generally casual affairs with plenty of time for fun socializing.

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1990

Milestones: March 1st – The Fernie Snowmobile Association is formed and registered under the BC Societies Act. The name was voted on with 21 votes in favor. Shortly after, the FSA constructed a new cabin (Wranglers Cabin) in an area known as Minnesota Flats. Also began the annual Snow Drags which continue to this day, weather permitting.

Executives: Larry Barton President, Mike Sosnowski Vice President, Colleen Barton Secretary

1991

Milestones:  Sled Drags event rained out. October – club tries to get US customs to allow entry through Flathead crossing. The request was denied. Nov 21st. Dec 10th – proposal to the city of Ferniefor marshaling at FasGas lot (declined Feb 11, 1992).

Executives: Mike Sosnowski President, Don Uphill Vice President, Donna Uphill Secretary.

1992

Milestones: Fernie Snowmobile Association receives Not For Profit Society status.

Executives: Mike Sosnowski President, Paul Kramer Vice- President, Noreen Roesner Secretary-Treasurer.

1993

Milestones: Heli-skiing tenure application declined by the government. New Cabin policy was discussed and voted on. Club jackets were decided upon – black Indy 500 style. Motion to join MSRA was passed contingent on John Scarpelli deciding if it was workable. March 9th: Rob Grey to look after emergency equipment for emergency use. Tiny Shatosky will give club $1 for every hat or t-shirt he sells with FSA crest on it.

Events: Poker Run canceled due to cold weather. April 13th: Collected $1163 from Snowarama.

Executives: NA

1994

Milestones: The club began grooming trails to enhance the snowmobiling experience for out of town sledders. Also began working to become legal with land use agreements for snowmobile trail use on private and crown lands. At the provincial level, the British Columbia Snowmobile Federation went through some very hard times and ultimately a group broke off and formed a second provincial organization called ABC Snow.

Grooming: FSA grooming via private contractor (Foothills Silvaculture / Prestige Tours) of approx 80km of trails including the nordic skiing trails within the town (30 km up Hartley, 20km up Morrissey, 30km up Coal Creek completed once a week).

Trail Passes & Membership: NA

Executive: NA

2002

Milestones: Morrisey staging area is created on Devorak Rd. Fernie locals, who are paying annual membership fees to support FSA trail grooming and cabins, state they feel they are subsidizing out of town riders who do not have to pay for day use, in addition to the local businesses who are benefiting from increased snowmobile tourism but who are not supporting club efforts. “Club operations have become a business and a lot of fun has been lost” ~ Wayne Stamler. Executives send a letter to the city asking for funding support of the grooming program as a result.

Executives: Wayne Stamler President, Jim Thorner Secretary-Treasurer

2004

Milestones: NA

Executive: Jim Thorner Secretary, Andy Buchan, Joseph Mercier, Robert Hertz, Paul Kramer, Mike Scarpelli, Mike Sosnowski, Wayne Stamler

2005

Milestones: NA

Executive: Jim Thorner Secretary, Andy Buchan, Robert Hertz, Paul Kramer, Joseph Mercier, Mike Sxarpelli, Mike Sosnowski, Wayne Stamler, Rick Stratton, Kurt Tilbury

2006

Milestones: After a motion made by Rick Stratton, the FSA begins it’s own internal grooming program using a leased BR 180 snowcat and mogul master drag. Fernie Wilderness Adventures maintains the Morrissey staging area. Coal Creek Staging Area, at what is now the Montane trail parking lot, is taken over by the proposed Blackstone Golf Course Development leaving nowhere for sledders to park in order to access Coal Creek trails. New roof installed on the Ram cabin.

Trail Passes & Memberships: FSA begins selling day tickets at trailheads: $10 for one day, $20 for the week – a total of 591 day-passes are sold that season in addition to the 95 annual memberships.

Executive: President Paul Kramer, no treasurer, Secretary Doug Dean, Shona Millar takes on Treasurer role

2007

Milestones: May 1 2007 FSA purchases the previously leased 2001 BR 180 from Riverside Specialities for $50,000. A grant of $2300 from the Columbia Basin Trust is used to support the purchase and continuation of the internal grooming program.

Trail Pass & Memberships: Day pass rates remain the same, annual memberships are $70.

Executives: President Paul Kramer, Vice President Andy Buchan, Secretary Doug Dean, Treasurer Shona Williams, Wayne Stamler, Rick Mercer, Kurt Tilbury, Monty Sosnowski, Rick Stratton.

2008

Milestones: December 28th Sparwood 8 snowmobile fatality incident – the resulting Coroner’s Review recognizes the growth of backcountry snowmobiling and triggers many changes within the industry (see link below). New trail maps printed and available for purchase at hotels. Wayne Stamler wins BCSF Groomer of the Year. Fernie awarded BCSF Snowmobile Club of the Year. New trail marker signs (red numbers) installed by Doug Dean. Kennecott drilling up Coal Creek until November, Tembec logging McEvoy though December. Lodgepole plowed for the entire season for logging. Marten Ridge Wind Energy Project proposal by Premier Renewable Energy.

Events: Scott Stratton and Kurt Tilbury provide an informal avalanche training seminar in December with 20 participants. Jan 13th family ride and BBQ 80 participants at the Wrangler’s Cabin – wood split and roof shoveling. FSA organized club ride at Elkford (tour of the area) on Feb 8th. 100 Entries in Snow Drags (the overall winner was Brent Linderman)- Trinidad Drilling as the main sponsor. Island Lake Ride April 19/20th. Paul Kramer and Alex Millar attend Edmonton Snow Show in Tourism Fernie Booth. Doug Dean man’s booth at Saskatchewan Snow Show representing Fernie.

Trail Passes & Memberships: Primary Membership rates increased to $75.

Grooming: Coal Creek to the Wranglers Cabin groomed Friday each week. Powder Cowboy grooming trail up McDermid Creek. Wayne Stamler and Monty Heather rebuilt the 81 GMC (donated by Elk Valley Coal) to help move the snowcat.

Corporate Partners: Smitty’s, Inn on the Border, Falkins Insurance Group, Cooks Electric, Stanford Inn, Ghostrider Motorsports, Best Western Fernie.

Executive: President Paul Kramer, Doug Dean, Bob Arnott, Wayne Stamler, Jim Thorner, Mike Scarpelli.

Links to articles regarding Sparwood 8 Snowmobile Fatality:

BC Coroner’s Death Review Panel Summary

Avalanche Canada Incident Summary

CBC News Article

 

2009

Milestones: The new Coal Creek staging area is created at a cost of $16,000 with work in kind provided by Fiorentino Brothers. Corbin, to later amalgamate with the FSA in 2017, purchases a 1989 BR400 snowcat from George Neubauer and Terry Shepherd for $23,000. Andy Buchan voted to be club webmaster of the new Fernie Snowmobile Association website. New stairs added to Wranglers Cabin (Doug Dean).

Events: First annual Full Moon Ride to the Wranglers Cabin (Jan 10, 2010) organized by Derek Stephenson “Was a major success. Mild weather, good burgers, and a roaring bonfire made a great evening – and it was especially well attended by girlfriends and wives.” Jan 25th Richard Lee sponsored the first club ride to the cabin. March 7th Snow Drags beside Stanford Hotel a success – the overall winner was Dan Forsyth. Snowarama Event raised $45,000 for the 8 victims of the 2008 avalanche. Family Ride to the Ram Cabin Feb 15th  “Monty S made the highmark of the day (in the pickup division). We had a great ride up into the bowls, past the cabin – with a foot of fresh powder on top of a solid base”. 

.DragRaceResults2009

Corporate Partners: Ghostrider Motorsports, Best Western, Falkins Insurance, Park Place Lodge, Stanford Hotel, Smitty’s / Husky, Maxam Bulk Services.

Grooming: Coal Creek to Wrangler’s Cabin, increased to two nights a week.

Executive: Paul Kramer President

 

2010

Milestones: FSA began discussions/efforts with Natural Resources Canada for a) an agreement for a piece of land in the Dominion Government Block on which to put a new warm-up shelter/cabin (Rolling Hills cabin) and b) a new trail from the Rolling Hills cabin to the logging road near the Wranglers cabin. These efforts resulted in a SUP being issued to the FSA in the spring of 2011 for both the above uses. Nov 2010 Tembec logging closes Morrissey for the season. Other season challenges included no road plowing up Coal Creek past dump, valley bottom rain resulting in long periods of no grooming. Groomed up Matheson and Martin for the first time. “We are planning for next season with various initiatives: the possibility of a new warm-up shelter at the Coal Creek summit; the possibility of another groomer; and a new family-friendly trail through the Rolling Hills. Fernie is closer to Saskatchewan and most of Alberta than some of the big-name snowmobile places and with continued diligence, Fernie can be a destination city for snowmobiles”- Paul Kramer. Club purchased a skimmer trailer. Public interest in creating a Flathead National Park which would effectively shut down the flathead for snowmobile use.

Events: Teck Coal sponsored “Know The Snow” event Jan 7th at the Park Place Lodge. Jan 15th Midnight ride to the Wranglers Cabin, Snowdrags Feb 19th, Poker Run March 5th. Jan 8th Movie Night at the Best Western.

Corporate Partners: Ghostrider Motorsports, Best Western, Smitty’s, Fernie Cardlock, Park Place Lodge, Stanford, Falkins Insurance, Cooks Electric.

Grooming: Coal Creek to Wrangler’s Cabin two nights a week.

Executive: NA

 

 

2011

Milestones: Upon receipt of SUP, FSA began construction of the Rolling Hills cabin and the “Doug Dean” trail between the cabins (read more below).  November 24, 2011, Due to ongoing concerns with the grooming program, a Grooming Committee was formed. The mandate was to “Receive grooming comments from riders to Paul Kramer (Ghostrider Motorsports), take them to Wayne Stamler (Grooming Chairman) for discussion and action”. The committee was made up of Dan Rotella (Chairman), John Scarpelli, and Roland Green. December 15, 2011, General Meeting: Following a heated meeting between the Grooming Committee and the Grooming Chairman, a motion was made to disband the Grooming Committee. This event triggered a handful of members to set out on their own to to form a second snowmobile club in Fernie. FSA went about our regular business while the Elk Valley Snowmobile Club (EVSC) was being formed, registered as a society, etc. D

rilling program up Coal Creek: “Road to Paige’s Draw is a mess with large ruts, rocks and drill pipe sticking up”. Teck Coak Swift Project community assessment process begins. Crowsnest Pass Coal begins exploration for their proposed Coal Creek Project threatening closure of snowmobile areas.

Events: Snow Drags Feb 19th at the Stanford (overall winner Darcy Hutchinson $2000).March 5th Poker Run. $500 donation to the Salvation Army.

Grooming: Coal Creek to Wrangler’s Cabin two nights a week.

Executive: NA

The History of the Doug Dean Trail (photos below)

DragRaceResults2011

2012

Milestones: Purchased a ‘Bearcat’ snowmobile for $11,496 to groom Hartley from Ghostrider Motorsports. Grand Opening of the Rolling Hills Cabin December 29th, 2012. Tembec logging closed Morrissey for the second season in a row. Jim Thorner completes significant work preparing a detailed plan for use of the old City dumpsite to present to the council.  Land access issues at Tunnel Creek – gate needs to be moved at who’s cost, the potential for Mainroads to be blocking off public access, handshake agreement in place for sled access after march 15th. Robert Dixon suggests FSA supplies porta-potties at staging areas and a warm-up shack, beacon checkers for trailhead staff as well as fencing to make the area look more attractive and professional. “Our major goal for the coming year is to increase the staging area on the Coal Creek FSR. It has been a major complaint of our out-of-province visitors that parking is not close to ideal. In fact, it is a real deterrent. We will also pursue the aspect of putting up a building to house the Snow Cat in the Coal Creek corridor so that we don’t have to spend our time transporting the Snow Cat each and every groom. Once again, it is nice to realize that Fernie is becoming a destination for snowmobilers from the prairies and the figures seem to be supporting the fact that it is becoming more than a “one-day destination”- Bob Arnott & Doug Dean.

Paul Kramer (President) commented on great turn out at the AGM and mentioned to prospective nominees about the commitment and the workload of being on the executive – “Take it seriously to keep the club moving forward”.

Events: Donation of $2500 to Dalton Hutchinson. Initiation of Island Lake Lodge Ride discussions.

Grooming:  Coal Creek to Rolling Hills to Wranglers two nights a week. The Matheson, Martin, and Hartley areas were added as occasionally groomed routes. Wayne Stamler, grooming committee chair. The broken exhaust manifold on snowcat results in no grooming for two weeks over family day weekend(s)

Executives: Paul Kramer President, Claudette Daigle Treasurer, Doug Dean Secretary.  Directors Mike Scarpelli, Jim Thorner, Bob Arnott, Glenn McDonald, Vic Guidici, Alex Millar.

 

2013

Milestones: The city of Fernie agrees to plow to the Coal Creek staging area for the year. Morrissey re-open post logging. Wranglers Cabin receives a paint job. SnowTrails TV did a Fernie broadcast on the Discovery Channel and a Detroit Fox Channel.  Presentation from CO Patricia Burley on snowmobile closures/restrictions in our area – clear maps and info well received by the club. Doug Dean recommends the FSA look at creating an official operating budget for future years and would like to see “If, despite the city providing RMI funding, the FSA can stand on its own legs operating on membership and trail pass sales alone”.  Issues with garbage at the trailheads and cabins, dirty outhouses, firewood, and cabin repairs – suggestions that the FSA should pay someone 4 hours a week to do admin work. Notes in meeting minutes that the required workload is taxing on the limited number of volunteers. “Goal to groom 4 nights a week to appease higher traffic and out of town travelers, and to spend $50,000 on improvements of some kind to the Wrangler’s Cabin” – Bob Arnott. Lack of early season snow and a cold spell in January. “We will be expanding our logistics for the coming season keeping track of rider statistics in a more professional manner” – Bob Arnott.

Events: Monthly family rides, Saskatoon and Edmonton Snow Shows, wind up ride at Island Lake Lodge. Andy and Chantelle Weir host a Pub Night. Monty and Cliff organize several other events. Wayne is the lead on the snow drags event (Trico Lands). Snow drags canceled due to rain and lack of snow, Alex Millar “If we had more volunteers stepping up at the meetings and someone to come forward and be a chairman this event could have possibilities”.

Corporate Partners: Ghostrider Motorsports, Best Western, Park Place Lodge, Fernie Real Estate, Fernie Home Hardware, Stanford.

Trail Passes & Memberships: Day pass rate increased to $15. Primary Membership $100, Secondary Membership $50, Child and Senior Membership $30. Trailhead collections were done intermittently on weekends by volunteers.

Grooming: Doug Dean grooming with BR180 and drag. Feb 13th Bear Cat with 24×151 track purchased to tow a drag donated by Rick Mercier to groom Hartley. Grooming potentially limited until Avalanche Safety Plan is created for FSA. BR 180 down with broken exhaust manifold – only one available was in England and ship via air to complete repairs ASAP. March 15th snowcat new engine installed by Scarpelli and Spenser Olsen.

Executives: Paul Kramer resigns as president, taken over by Bob Arnott, Secretary Doug Dean, Treasurer Claudette Diagle, Directors Wayne Stamler, Mike Scarpelli, Alex Millar, Ed Burrill, Monty Sosnowski, Andy Weir, Chantelle Weir.

2014

Milestones: Transitioned to contract groomer for Coal Creek (Foothills SIlvaculture twice/week) which produced favorable conditions with the groomer. Tracey Taylor hired as FSA Administrative Assistant.

Events: Monty and Cliff take over the organization of Sled Drag Events. Sled Drags on Trico Lands successful despite +8C. Two family rides (80 participants “ 60 people in attendance who enjoyed the good early season snow and some hot food. What was very good this year is we had a larger than usual turnout of women and children. We noted 11 women and7 children (< 12 years old).”) and snow drags (107 class entries). FSA partners with Elk Valley Mountaineers for Snowarama. Dec 27th Family Ride and Avalanche Awareness Days event hosted by Elk Valley Snow Shepherds at the Rolling Hills Cabin. Island Lake Lodge ride canceled.

Other Notable: Fall of 2014: Ongoing challenges between the two Fernie snowmobile clubs. Additional seasonal challenges included very low snowfall and warm temperatures, major mechanical breakdown of snowcat on the first day of operations for the season (Dec 27th, $17,000 repair bill). Woodshed completed at Rolling Hills Cabin. Ram creek outhouses repairs. Relocated solar panel on Rolling Hills Cabin.  No grooming up Hartley due to lack of snow. “We continue to monitor the possible requirement (driven by WorkSafe BC) for professionally produced safety plans and avalanche assessments prior to every grooming event. Should this come into effect in the future it will cause very large expenditures for the FSA to be able to legally groom our trails”. Long term goals remain to “Increase size of Coal Creek parking lot, use owned snowcat to groom Hartley Lake for better quality grooming, use contractor to groom Coal Creek due to improved trail quality related to the effectiveness of newer machine with a tiller, purchase a trailer to haul the BR 180, construct a building near Coal Creek to store groomer and base operations”. Chantelle Weir to take over doing club newsletters from Shona. Bob and Wayne give a presentation to the City of Fernie about increased parking at Coal Creek and discussions about a Quonset for storage of snowcat – a motion was passed by the city to work with the FSA for future operations. PA system purchased for sled drags. Andy Buchan created FSA webpage.

Trail Passes & Membership: Primary Membership $100, Secondary $50, Child $50, Senior $40, Day pass $15. Trail collections on Fri, Sat, Sun only. Motion to hire paid trailhead staff from 8 am to 1 pm to be paid $20/hr. Doug Dean to make a chart for tracking daily trailhead pass sales and statistics.

Executives: Bob Arnot President, Doug Dean Secretary, Connie Arnott Treasurer, Directors Wayne Stamler, Mike Scarpelli, Alex Millar, Spenser Olsen, Monty Sosnowski, Cliff Mitchell, Tyler Temple, Darcy Hutchinson.

Snow Drags Poster 2014

2015

Milestones: March 2015: Dan and Blake Earl attended an FSA meeting and had preliminary talks to amalgamate the two Fernie clubs back into one. FSA passed a motion to form a committee to explore this, and that neither club President would be on the committees. Talks went reasonably well for a while but ultimately fell apart again. Ultimately, the EVSC society ended up being dissolved by the registrar for noncompliance with society filings. October 2015- Simultaneously on the provincial level the 2 recognized snowmobile organizations became one again when the ABC Snow Group was folded and assets transferred to the BCSF. Creation of FSA Facebook Page on October 15th (Mud and Snow has been primary communications tool until then). BC releases new Off-Highway Vehicle Act mandating registration of snowmobiles.

Other Notable: Coal Creek closed at the beginning of the season for logging operations (Feb opening). Avalanche Canada ATES signs installed at Hartley and Ram Creek. Exec team and public trail users note challenges with trailhead collections staff, particularly with lack of accurate data collection for the club and inability to issue receipts to the public for monies paid at the trailhead.

Trail Passes and Memberships: Annual primary membership rate $80. Day ticket rates raised to $20. New BCSF Silkstart online membership program up and running to manage snowmobile club membership databases and purchase memberships online (vs paper at trailheads).

Grooming: Contract groomer for Morrissey / Coal Creek (Annual budget $40,000). Regular grooming route up Coal Creek, Doug Dean, Morrissey totaled 67.5km.FSA looking into the feasibility of also grooming up Matheson (7km), Martin (3km), and to the Notch (19km round trip) in addition to a pilot project to groom River Road Extension for the ‘Fat Bike Community”. Hartley was added to Contract Groomer Program (additional $2500 expense) – was previously done with snowmobile and tow behind drag, “Adding “between 16-26km of grooming for sledders and ski tourers in Olivia Creek, Mount Bizzaro, Proctor Mountain, and the Three Sisters” – grooming to occur when avalanche conditions ensure safe passage. inReaches purchased for grooming operations as safety communication devices. Worksafe BC issues mandatory requirement for trail operators to comply with safety legislation requiring Avalanche Safety Plan to protect people working in avalanche terrain – imposing major expense for clubs across BC.

Executives: President Bob Arnott, Robert Dixon, Devon Hanson, Darcy Hutchison, Glenn McDonald, Jim Malenka, Cliff Mitchell, Joe Oconnor, Spencer Olson, Mike Scarpelli, Monty Sosnowski, Gene Stephenson.

 

2016

Milestones: First FSA Trail Guide booklet is printed – available free at trailheads. First Notice to Reader filed (official financial statements for the club). Creation of Bob Arnott Memorial Scholarship (awarded to Daylan Morgan in the fall, $500). FSA broke the Revenue Canada threshold of $50,000 revenue for the first time and now required to remit GST. AGM moved from fall to spring to allow Exec more time for familiarity with rolls and to set up for winter operations (motion forwarded by Alex Millar and deemed critical by members). Significant issues with the contract groomer program.

Events: Jan 3rd family Ride to the Rolling Hills Cabin. Jan 23rd Full Moon Ride. Sled Drags successful (500 spectators, $4400 revenue). Avalanche Awareness Days (50 attendees), Family Ride canceled due to weather, Island Lake Lodge Ride.

Other Notables:  Coal Creek Closed for the early part of the season – difficulties reopening related to having to pull in snow from the berms on sides of the road which were full of debris causing damage to equipment and poor trail surface.  Draft provincial membership program presented by Donegal from the BCSF for consideration. $5200 raised in FSA corporate partnership program. Challenges collecting trail fees and controlling parking at Morrissey related to impeding traffic flow – applied for and received temporary permission to use the NCC lands for parking. FSA donates $5k to Fernie Trails Alliance for the rebuild of the Harvey Ski Touring Cabin (half now half upon completion). South Country BackCountry Users Association requests support from FSA to prevent government closure of the Sand Creek Drainage area. Partying issues at Coal Creek causing significant issues. Jemi Fibre sold to Canwell March 17th, 2016. New FSA website launched. SeaCan purchased for storage.

Traill Passes & Membership: Day ticket prices increased to $25 per day, BCSF annual primary membership $120. Motion by Justin Boehm to offer discounted day ticket rates for children under the ages of 16 – unanimously approved at $10.

Grooming:  Inconsistencies with contract grooming program coupled with the weather has resulted in significant negative feedback from riders. The contract groomer later advises FSA he will no longer be able to provide grooming services in the future.

Bob Arnott resigns, handing over reigns to new President Monty Sosnowski, Dave Hozjan Vice President. Nicole Media voted in mid-season as Social Media Committee (growing primary method of communication with members and public).

2017

Milestones: Increasing expectations from members (after challenges with grooming and collections program in the previous season) coupled with new legislative demands require FSA to dial-up back of house procedures and grooming program. Overarching goal is to become a financially independent organization, not reliant on City of Fernie Grants. Nicole Matei (diploma in tourism and recreation management + emergency management) hired for up to 20 hrs per week at $20/hr to tackle growing admin challenges. Discussion and vote at AGM that FSA should maximize revenue potential by transitioning to 7 day a week collection funding an in-house grooming program. Spenser Olsen and Dave Hozjan source new snowcat – eventually Spencer flies to US to inspect and ultimately purchase a new snowcat for the club. New groomer arrives September 5th – Bison 350R with Rexroth Drive at 10,000 hours, 8-way Leitwolf blade and tiller. Total purchase price was $42,677 USD. Funded by $47,750 raised from corporate partners including a kick start of $5000 from the United Steelworkers, remaining balance was via loan from East Kootenay Credit Union. November 2017 – FSA receives sign off on first Avalanche Safety Plan prepared by Braden Schmidt & Nicole Matei reviewed by Steve Conger (CAA Ops3, QAP) with avalanche path mapping data and aerial photos donated from Elk Valley Snow Shepherds, significantly reducing the cost to FSA. Steve Kelly suggests oil and gas industry solution to assist FSA meet WorkSafe BC Lone Worker safe work procedures and spearheads subsequent ‘lifetime’ donation of Blackline Safety devices bringing the club into compliance with WorksafeBC. FSA completes official transition to the new BC Societies Act. Creation of first FSA Employee Manuals, official job descriptions, trailhead logs and data recording spreadsheets, Occupational Health and Safety Manuals and Emergency Response Plans. FSA amalgamates with Corbin Country Club October 2017 – Curtis Hagley remains as Corbin Director (the French’s and Hagley’s should be noted for significant contribution).

Events: Bob Arnott Memorial Ride and plaque installation at the Rolling Hills Cabin Jan 21, 2017 (Alex Millar and Randy Zahn). Island Lake Ride. Avalanche Awareness Days Event raises $2030 to be donated to Avalanche Canada, the Canadian Avalanche Rescue Dog Association and Fernie Search and Rescue. Feb 11th Moonlight Ride. FSA hosts Thunderstruck film premier at Griz Bar.

Other Notable: General member’s meetings moved from Thursday to Friday to encourage out of town member attendance. 1527 volunteer hours and 660 employee hours recorded in 2017. BCSF Auto-Renew System Paypal issue causes major in-house administrative work to repair as over 100 FSA members are billed the incorrect amount for their annual membership. Harvey Cabin under construction and partially completed lost to wildfire (FSA had donated $2500). Bingay Coal Mine proposal near Elkford. Large metal trail map signs purchased and posted on trails – the first step in new signage program. First online member survey is sent out with a positive response rate and good feedback

Trail Passes and Annual Memberships: Annual primary membership rate $175. Day tickets $25.

Grooming: Avalanche Safety Plan now instrumental in guiding the grooming program. Justin Boehm, as professional CAA Operations Level 1 elected as Grooming Director to support the rollout of these new standard operating procedures. Spenser continues to play major role as Maintenance Director. Jim Tosh (15 years plus grooming experience at Fernie Alpine Resort, AST1) hired as groomer operator. Fri, Sat, Sun, Wed grooming on Coal Creek, Doug Dean, Summit, and Morrissey Trails. Notch, Matheson, and Martin added in as conditions and fuel allows. Corbin groomed once a week by a volunteer from the staging area to either Rain Gauge or McClatchie as avalanche conditions permit. Hartley groomed once a month or so as avalanche conditions permit.

Executives: President Dave Hozjan, Vice President Devon Hanson, Secretary Nicole Matei, Treasurer Steve Kelly. Directors Peter Valenta, Mike Stefano, Roland Kraemer, Justin Boehm, Spenser Olson, Mike Scarpelli.

 

 


FSA Mission Statement

  • The Fernie Snowmobile Association serves to maintain, secure and protect motorized winter recreational opportuniites for our community and her visitor's.

FSA Vission Statement

  • Working together to provide vibrant and authentic snowmobile recreation opportunities today, tomorrow, and forever.

Guiding Principles

  • Coming Soon!