For outdoor enthusiasts, Corner Brook makes an excellent base for exploring outlying mountains and waters.
Mountain bikers should plan a stop by TNT Bicycles, 8 Maple Valley Rd. (tel. 709/634-6799). These guys know their business; ask for suggestions on where to go and for the free map of backcountry bike routes. Didn't bring your bike? You can also rent one here, and the shop leads group rides twice a week in summer, starting around 7pm (it stays light late here). Note that the shop is closed Sundays.
Some of the region's best hiking is found along Route 450, on the way to Bottle Cove. But other hikes can get you up into the hills around Corner Brook more quickly. At Marble Mountain's ski area, east of town on the Trans-Canada Highway, you can park in the ski lodge's parking lot and follow a kilometer-long (1/2 -mile) trail up to Steady Brook Falls, which become most impressive after a summer rain. More extensive hikes are outlined in the local hiking guide and map available around town.
All of eastern Canada has only one downhill ski area I'd consider a true skiing destination, and that's right here: Marble Mountain, just a 10-minute drive from Corner Brook. (You can see its steep hills just north of the city.) With a location near the Gulf of St. Lawrence, in the path of northwesterly winds, it gets plenty of powder, and the 518m (1,700-ft.) vertical drop is pretty respectable. There are 37 trails on the property, including a new novice run and two pristine "glade runs," plus eastern Canada's only high-speed detachable quad chairs. Many of the runs here are open to snowboarders, as well. Some all-inclusive packages here include airfare from elsewhere in Canada, lodging in a villa on the mountain, lift tickets, and a rental car.
Ask for a brochure by calling tel. 888/462-7253 or 709/637-7601 or checking the resort's website at www.skimarble.com. You reach the ski hill by taking exit 8 off the Trans-Canada Highway.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.