There are abundant options for those of us who like to hit the road. In fact, Radium is currently one of the host sites for the annual Golden Triangle Ride. This annual cycling event is hosted by the Elbow Valley Cycle Club of Calgary and includes a three day ride starting at Castle Mountain junction (near Banff), heading to Radium, then Golden, and back again. Here are a few possible routes.
- Radium to Golden (about 100k one way)- relatively flat and typically light on traffic. Follows the Columbia River Valley. The only problem is the small shoulder and there can be an abundance of logging trucks during the week.
- Panorama Ride (25-40k return depending on starting point)- legendary trek for the locals due to the initial ascent known as Peter's Hill. This steep climb should not be tackled by inexperienced or poorly conditioned riders. An alternative is to launch from Lillian Lake. If you park at the lake and back-track to the top of Peter's hill before turning around and starting your ride up to Panorama, you will add about 5-6 km to your ride and get a nice warm-up. The ride to Panorama is amazing! You get a lot of slow gradual incline and amazing views along the famous Toby Creek. A word of caution...there can be some falling rock on the road and the creek noise can make communication between riders sketchy.
- Westside Road (45-50k return) - While it is a nice ride and relatively free of traffic, recent neglect has caused major road deterioration. Be prepared for potholes and rough road. The ride has a lot of rollers and some great views of Windermere Lake.
The Valley is full of swimming options for open water and pool training.
Radium H.S. Pool - The pool in Radium has a 25m outdoor lane pool which is heated during the winter. It also has the thermal hot springs for your post workout soak.
Fairmont H.S. Pool - About 25 km down the road from Radium. The pool is available for lap swimming year round and tends to be a favourite amongst the locals we talked to.
Windermere Lake - This amazing lake is quite shallow and warms up quickly. It is a big lake so it can get choppy at times and is also swarming with boats after about 10 am during the summer. There are two fantastic beaches in Invermere (Kinsmen Beach and James Chabot Park)
Lillian Lake - Great training lake. Smaller and shallow. The lake warms up early and rarely has waves. It is also right adjacent to amazing running and mountain biking trails. It is also a great place to get at road ride up to Panorama.
There is no shortage of terrain for those who wish to get off-road. In fact, there are so many trails that you should stop by the local book store for one of several guides. You can also drop into a local bike shop or Crazy Soles in Invermere to find out when a group run/ride is taking place. They are always heading out on the trails so take advantage! Here are a couple of popular trail systems that you should check out.
The Old Coach Trail (between Radium & Invermere) - This trail system is old but relatively new. Locals have to honing these trails in recent years to create one of the best network of running and biking treks around. Plenty of double and single track. Well marked and maintained.
Lillian Lake (Outside Invermere on the way to Panorama)- The trail system is across the road from Lillian Lake. There are plenty of trails and varying distances. Great variety of terrain and incredible scenery. Trails are well marked and maintained.
Juniper (between Radium & Invermere) - Great network of trails but go with a local. The trails are not as well marked at the previous two but this option is a favourite for many local runners.
Mt. Swansea (Invermere) - You better be in shape. There are a lot of trails through here that have been adopted by the mountain bike crowd. Plenty of downhill (which means you have to climb it first!). If you get to the top, you will be rewarded. The peak has a launch pad for hang-gliders and a picnic area. You can drive up the mountain road and park if you like. A short hike takes you to the summit. This is the most amazing view that you are ever going to see! Do not miss this opportunity if you are in the Valley.
CHECK OUT OUR PHOTO GALLERY OF THIS RETREAT ON OUR FACEBOOK PAGE!
COOL EVENTS TO NOTE: Crazy Soles Nipika Trail Run, Kootenay Krusher MTB XC, Headbanger Trail Run, Loop the Lake Run, Heart of the Rockies Triathlon, Heart of the Rockies Open Water Swim (new this year)
*SPECIAL NOTE - This area is a golfer's paradise. There are seven amazing golf courses within 20 minutes of Radium Hot Springs including two in Radium (The Springs and the Radium Resort). Now you have a carrot to entice your spouse...you're welcome!