-Monika and Kathy on Amos-
I was skiing early enough today to use wax, but that might be the last time for the forseeable future. With warm temperatures in the forecast, we’re definitely into the spring skiing mode. Did we have winter?
I parked at Pocaterra hut where the thermometer registered +3°C at 11:30 a.m. Last night’s grooming included New Pocaterra, Come-Along, Rolly Road and Lynx, so I started up Rolly Road, seeing as I hadn’t done it for almost two years(it was closed last year due to the 2013 floods).
I applied Swix violet(rated at zero) and had decent grip on perfect tracks. From Rolly Road I took Come-Along and New Pocaterra to the Lynx junction, all on wonderful new tracksetting. That’s where the grip problems started. I proceeded up Old Pocaterra on skier-set tracks. There’s about 6 cm of fresh consolidated snow on the trail and I couldn’t get much grip yet at times my wax would clump. I struggled for 1.5K and threw in the towel, turning around and heading back to the hut.
As you get closer to the hut, there are a couple thin spots with icy tracks, but I would consider it a minor detail. Even the “Hazardous Downhill” had plenty of snow and was easily navigated.
No longer wanting to contend with wax, I drove to Elkwood Amphitheatre and pulled out the Skintecs. I skied a loop on Wheeler, Amos, side trip on Lynx, Woolley and Meadow.
Most of Wheeler had either icy or slushy tracks, especially in the exposed areas where you get the nice views. The Skintecs give awesome grip on either of those conditions. By 2 pm, the sun-exposed areas on all trails were soft and wet.
Fortunately, I didn’t have to contend with the snow fleas which Mary reported in the south end of the park, and there was very little tree debris on the trails. The temperature at 3 pm was +5.
You might be asking why I didn’t start my day with the Skintecs in the first place. Well, they give great grip in all conditions, but they’re slower than my waxable skis. That’s mostly because I’m about 10 pounds too heavy for them, so they drag slightly and slow me down.
If you go tomorrow, I would recommend waxless skis. Be prepared for the shady/sunny/lose-your-balance scenario on downhills. That is, you can be flying along on a steep downhill on cold, shaded snow and come to a sunny spot where the snow is soft and wet. Faceplant.
I think this time change every six months is ridiculous, but don’t forget to spring ahead one hour tonight.
Has anyone been to Lake Louise? I wonder how their trails are holding out.