The trails which were trackset yesterday were in fabulous condition: Terrace, Aspen, and Kovach. Tessa and I also ventured over to Ribbon creek(the Terrace downhill to Ribbon creek had good snow cover and was fun) to find that it was still in pretty nice shape. Link, which takes you from Ribbon creek to Kovach, was not so good, with lots of debris and the snow was verging on wet, so no grip.
As I mentioned yesterday, it’s truly amazing to see how much positive difference the tracksetting can make even when there is no new snow. I’ve included “before” and “after” photos of Aspen trail so you can see for yourself. A lot of the needles get embedded in the snow after tracksetting, and it might not be perfect, but it’s immeasurably better. Click on the photo for a larger image.
Temperatures were all over the place. When we started at 2 pm, the air temp at the village was -4°C, and the snow was -7°C. There was a very warm breeze as we skied on Ribbon creek and driving past there on the way home, the air temp was +6°C. Yet 5K north of the village, it had dropped again to -6°C.
I started out with VR40(-4/-12) but had to graduate up one notch to VR45 on Ribbon creek. I didn’t want to add anything stickier on Link because my wax would have just become a morass of sticky needles, so I was relegated to walking for at least half the distance. Reached Kovach, and the new tracksetting, and all was perfect again.
We climbed to the Kovach Lookout from the south approach, and there were a few more needles on the trail in spots, but nothing that would be any problem if you were descending. Descending from the lookout on the north side was super fast and the trail was in excellent condition.
I could see fresh corduroy heading up the Skogan pass trail, so there will probably be some more new tracks by tomorrow. Check the Kananaskis trail report for the latest update.
In Banff National Park, Cascade Valley and Redearth creek have been recently trackset.