-Donna and Kathy are on the way back with 8K to go.-
Dave Allen must be a magician who drives a snowmobile. I don’t know what kind of wizardry he pulled out of the hat to create such amzing conditions on Moraine Lake road, but I observed it today. It is indeed double trackset and I skied to the end because I wanted to see what it was like beyond the 7K point.
After a weekend of heavy use and abuse, it was still in marvelous shape. Tracksetter Dave worked his magic with a bare minimum of snow. There are two places(I’ll mention later) where he couldn’t get much of a track because the snow is razor thin, but nowhere did I scrape pavement. If you are observant, it’s easy enough to avoid any of the icy/thin places.
Today was one of those perfect days for cross-country skiing. With cold snow, blue skies, no wind, and Meryle the pine marten entertaining skiers with his/her antics. (I’ve named it Meryle for a couple reasons: could be a male or female, and Meryle sort of sounds like MLR – if you use your imagination).
I would have had this update on a lot sooner but I was engrossed in reading the entries/comments on the contests. What an articulate bunch of readers I have. Amazing storytellers. I can feel the passion in some of those comments. I laughed out loud when I read about Gary’s threesome! Jody confirms my belief in how a dog can change your life. Graeme P, a very powerful and moving tribute to your dad. A part of Alison’s comment is now on the header of this blog. Jan’s eloquent story about the fox nipping at her skis on a moonlit night. I could go on and on.
Back to skiing. I was sharing the trail this afternoon with about 20 other happy souls including Philip and Stormy who started about the same time as me. When we reached the big hill, they left me in their dust. I hadn’t waxed at the trailhead, and was still using the wax from Saturday which had all but disappeared. I finally stopped about 300 metres up the hill and applied VR45 which did the job.
The two thin spots are at the S-bends. The first one is about 200 metres long, just before you reach Paradise creek. The second one is about 300 metres long, and there’s a traffic cone marking the iciest spot which is easily avoidable. At no time did I have any problem navigating safely through either of these “hazardous” areas.
It’s 8.9K to the turn-around point with a net elevation gain of 250 metres. You can ski further, all the way to Moraine Lake in fact(as Chuck did yesterday), but you will cross an avalanche path. I’ll have more to say about Chuck later. I skied about 200 metres further in order to take a picture of the Valley of Ten Peaks.
The return trip was fantastic. At top speed, it was totally safe. The tracks were washed out on the corners but that’s to be expected after all the traffic on the weekend. It was cold enough, however, that I put on a warmer coat and Toque for the fast downhill.
Back to Chuck. Just for fun, it’s interesting to look at the blog statistics and see what search terms people are using, and being directed to this blog. Here are some from yesterday. Check the very last one. I keep telling Chuck that he’s in line to take over this blog when I retire.
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chuck’s report on skiing