© Herald Photo by Dave Leaderhouse
After a number of days being denied access to the Kinsmen Ski Hill due to severe weather conditions, skiers and snowboarders flocked to the facility on the weekend to "catch some air" and enjoy the beautiful weather. The Kinsmen Ski Hill, located in the Little Red River Park, is open for business every day of the week and will also be the site of the snowboarding activities during the upcoming Saskatchewan Winter Games.
The Kinsmen Ski Hill has been open for business for about a month, but Mother Nature never got that memo.
The downhill skiing and snowboarding facility located in the Little Red River Park has been forced to close a number of days this year due to severe weather conditions, but now that fresh snow has fallen and temperatures have risen, it’s business as usual.
“A lot of people come from all over,” says Nathan Stregger, a manager in training for the 24-year-old facility. “We have a great terrain park with a lot of jumps. Brian (Gaetz) does a great job in the cat.”
Gaetz has been managing the hill since it first opened in 1990 and his skill in grooming the facility for the various user groups has made the Kinsmen Ski Hill become a destination spot as well.
With Gaetz contemplating retiring sooner than later, Stregger has stepped in to learn the ropes and the pair are pleased with the shape of the facility, despite the nasty weather.
There are approximately 42 season-ticket holders who utilize the hill with the Prince Albert Ski League bringing in another 60 or so enthusiasts and the P.A. Alpine Race Team having about 15 members. Day-use skiers are also more than welcome.
The Kinsmen Ski Hill is open Monday to Friday from 4-9 p.m. with the hours extended on the weekends to 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
A log cabin at the bottom of the hill also has equipment rentals available with snowboards or skis available for $25 and that includes a daily lift ticket. There are also lessons offered by qualified instructors with each session costing $20, but it is asked that they be booked at least a day in advance.
Heavy traffic is expected for the rest of the season and for three days in February the Kinsmen Ski Hill will showcase some of the best snowboarders in the province when the Saskatchewan Winter Games stages a major competition at the facility.
The Kinsmen Ski Hill is one of Prince Albert’s best little treasures and it is available to everyone. More information on the programs that are being offered can be obtained by calling Brian or Nathan at 306-763-5454.