-Alf Skrastins was the first skier on the New Ribbon creek trail-
I was thrilled to meet Alf Skrastins on the highest part of the New Ribbon creek trail today. Let me tell you the story from the beginning…
I had every intention of going to Lake Louise today until I received the news that grooming on Moraine Lake road wouldn’t occur until Thursday.
Rather, I decided to check the snow in Kananaskis, and was dropped off this afternoon at Kananaskis village in 25 cm of snow. I broke trail on Terrace for 1.8K to the Kovach junction where I was glad to see a snowmobile track heading towards the Ribbon creek parking lot.
Breaking trail in deep snow is not my normal skiing experience. I don’t know how Chuck does it for his marathon backcountry adventures, sometimes over 30K. It took me close to a half hour to complete the 1.8K.
Following the snowmobile track downhill to Ribbon creek was fun, and on my wide skis I was able to stay upright!
The snowmobile tracks, as I later learned, were made by Tracksetter Jeff as he was surveying his kingdom of snow. The tracks continued up Hidden from the Ribbon creek parking lot, and like a moth to a light, I was on my way.
Climbing up Hidden for 400 metres, then up Coal Mine for another 550, I arrived at the New Ribbon creek trail where the snowmobile tracks continued. I could also see a skier had already been up here.
In another 400 metres I ran into Alf Skrastins, a well-known trip reporter and commenter on this blog. For a detailed description of the new trail’s character, be sure to read Alf’s detailed report on the Trip Reports. He’s also got some excellent photos of the New Ribbon creek trail.
Take note, the new trail is not suitable for novice skiers.
On the way back down, I was following Alf and as we were speeding down Coal Mine, I decided to take a photo of Alf while we were on the move. Well, I dropped my camera, then had to try and stop and go back to get it. It’s not easy trying to put the brakes on when you’re in a narrow snowmobile track. I finally bailed into the deep snow on the side of the trail. Miraculously, my camera seems to be working.