On the first Saturday of March, the Fort Smith Ski Club organizes the Thebacha Loppet from Fort Fitzgerald to Fort Smith. The loppet route is 30 kilometres but shorter routes are also maintained to accommodate participants of all ages and skill levels.
For centuries, the loppet route was the First Nations’ portage route around the mighty Slave River rapids. There are stories of young men who paddled voyageur canoes from Tulita on the Mackenzie River to Thebacha, then hike across the portage to avoid the rapids and ultimately trade furs for supplies at Fort Fitzgerald.
The Thebacha Loppet is the oldest classic ski tour in Western Canada. It officially began in 1973 but skiers have used the route since it was cleared for the centennial celebrations of Confederaion in 1967. The route, which features incredible views of the Slave River rapids, is now part of the Trans Canada Trail.
To register for the Thebacha Loppet: www.zone4.com
For more information: