Can’t get enough

Goat Creek

(Update: See comments for info on West Bragg Creek)

Goat Creek, approx 2K from the trailhead. Mar 4, 2011

We may not see conditions like this for ten more years, so I’m trying to get my fill of Goat Creek. Trouble is, it continues to get better, making me want to go back.  Again and again.

The Goat Creek bridge, approx 6K along the trail. There's a fast downhill with turns leading to this bridge, but there are no longer any rocks and the conditons are easy to snowplow in.

It was trackset Thursday but already has a covering of new snow, ranging from 4 – 8 cm, depending on where you are.

The first Spray River bridge, approx 8K along the trail. On the other side, you continue on the Spray River(west side) trail for 4.7K to the east-west junction where you'll see the picnic table. Mar 4, 2011

Those early-season rocks have all disappeared. With all the snow, t’s full speed ahead on the downhills, the bridges, the tight turns. On the long, fast downhill the tracks are a bit wobbly but it only adds to the fun, nothing of concern.

Now on the Spray River(west side) trail. There's a skating lane all the way(10K) to Banff, but today it had a lot of fresh snow. Mar 4, 2011

The tracks are still pretty good but it would be a slog for anyone skating on the Spray River(west side). There was about 4 cm of fresh snow at the Goat Creek trailhead, much more in the mid-section.

Spray River(east side). Mar 4, 2011

At the junction between east and west, I decided to ski on the east side back to the Banff Springs. Excellent conditions all the way.

The east side is a little easier than the west side, as it has no hills of any note except the last downhill to the golf course which twists and turns and is a lot of fun. Nice to be able to enjoy it with no rocks to worry about.

You'll know you're almost at the end of the trail when you see the Banff Springs Hotel. Mar 4, 2011

As you emerge from the  trees, the Banff Springs Hotel appears in all its grandeur. Unless you plan on skiing this trail both directions, make sure you have arranged for a ride when you reach the end. If you come back on the east side, it’s the Bow Falls parking lot.


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  1. I like the new header photo – looks like the glide down from Elk Pass?

    Yes…just a few metres past the Patterson junction. -Bob

  2. Comment from Lech Lesiak re: West Bragg Creek:

    Skied the Telephone trail on Saturday, March 5. There was a bit of new snow, and the trail conditions were good.

  3. I received this email from Mike Haden:

    Quick note, Bob.

    PLPP trails are in good shape at the south end today despite obvious snowfall over the past few days. Moraine, Fox, Boulton Creek, Elk Pass, Blueberry Hill were groomed yesterday or overnight and provided superb uphill and downhill conditions this afternoon, 0C at 2pm at Boulton, -9C at 5:30pm. Word from other skiiers was that Tyrwhitt was groomed as well as far as Whiskey Jack but that Whiskey Jack was snow-covered. So our experience matches the trail report – no surprises, but the conditions were really, really good on the southern trails.

    // Mike

  4. I received this email today:

    Skied at Bragg Creek today. No new track setting after the latest snowfall, but very nice conditions anyways. No bare spots, no rocks, just plenty of snow. And very few people today.


  5. I’ve reworked Bob’s quote-“We may not see conditions like this for ten more years, so I’m trying to get my fill of BRAGG Creek. Trouble is, it continues to get better, making me want to go back. Again and again.”

    Great skiing on Saturday afternoon, a bit of fresh over Thursday’s tracksetting on Moose and Sundog loops.
    Started out in a crisp -17 in the early afternoon, warming to minus 13 or so. No winds and some sun made it seem warmer.

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