-Moraine Lake Road-
If you can survive the first 4.5K, you will be rewarded with an enjoyable ski for the final 4.5K.
The temperature at Lake Louise was +1°C at 1:45 pm with an overcast sky. Moraine Lake Road was hardpacked at the trailhead, and the tracks were well-defined but solid ice. I had no sun-softened tracks at any point on the trail today.
I used my zero waxless skis and had phenomenal grip in the icy tracks, even as I climbed the big hill. As I was going up, I had a lot of misgivings, knowing that in a couple hours I’d have to descend this steep, icy hill.
Nearing the top of the hill at 4.5K, the conditions began to change considerably. It started to look and feel like snow under my skis! For the remainder of the trail to 9K the conditions were reasonably enjoyable. There was about 3 cm of sugary snow on top of the most recent grooming.
On my return, the main challenge of the day was facing me as I started down the long hill. Normally, in good conditions, I try to go as fast as I can over the 2 kilometres of downhill. Today, I tried to go as slow as I could! For most of the descent, I was in an all-out snowplow and managed to stay upright and in control. At the bottom, I had to pry my legs out of the snowplow stance, however.
MLR needs at least 10 cm of snow on the lower section to bring it back to life. It was snowing lightly when I left Lake Louise. I spoke to a couple skiers who had tried the Great Divide earlier and they said it was in terrible shape.
If you go to Lake Louise, Wilson’s has xc skis and gear on sale Wilson’s Spring Specials