THE COWBOY TRAIL(Hwy #22) AND CROWSNEST HIGHWAY (Hwy #3)
Drive time: about 3.5 hours
Visitors preferring a scenic and shortest route to Fernie from Calgary will certainly enjoy the trip along Alberta’s famed Cowboy Trail (Hwy #22) to the Crowsnest Highway (Hwy #3).
Please note that Highway #22 is not a major highway, although it is well traveled. In poor winter weather conditions, this highway can be treacherous; Highway #2 is recommended over Highway #22 during adverse conditions includign high winds and snowstorms. So, if the weather is good, take this shorter scenic route, otherwise follow the “Poor Weather Route” (see below).
Take Highway #2 south out of Calgary and make your way to Highway #22, via the town of Black Diamond. There are two routes to Black Diamond,both of which take the same length of time:
1. From Highway #2, turn west on Highway #22a immediately upon leaving the city. Turn south on Highway #22. Careful: signs are small and easy to miss. If you hit Priddis, you have gone too far.
2. Remain on Highway #2 and turn west on Highway #7, which ends in the town of Black Diamond. Turn south on Highway #22.
After about an hour of driving, you will come to the Crowsnest Highway (Highway #3). Turn right (west).
As you drive into Fernie, the Lizard Range and Fernie Alpine Resort will appear directly ahead in the distance.
Before the North Fernie Bridge, you will see the Chamber of Commerce and Tourist Information Centre on your right. Fernie’s Historic Downtown is on your left hand side and hosts the main shopping and restaurant district.