As we were skiing along Elk pass, Georgina pointed out a feature which I had never noticed before: the hugging tree. I’ve posted the photo. See if you can find it the next time you’re skiing on Elk Pass.
It appears that we’ll be suffering through a couple days of warm and windy weather with some rain mixed in. Today in PLPP the weather was constantly changing, but nothing that would affect our enjoyment of the new tracksetting on Elk Pass and Blueberry Hill.
Georgina and I started out just after 12 noon at the Upper Lake trailhead. From there, it’s a 1K ski on gentle rolling hills to the actual start of the Elk Pass trail.
The snow temperature was -5°C and the air was -4. I waxed with VR45(-2/-8) and it performed well all day. The wind was howling at the top of the Elk Pass hill, but disappeared as soon as we got back down the other side, which was easy to descend on the new grooming.
The PLPP Live Grooming Report this morning indicated that Elk Pass, Blueberry Hill, and Patterson had been trackset last night. Neither I nor Georgina had been to the end of Blueberry Hill this winter, so it was an easy decision to choose our destination.
The snow and tracks were excellent all the way to the top of Blueberry Hill. We both noticed that it felt a lot colder, too. I was half expecting a temperature inversion, but luckily it didn’t occur. The skies were overcast and the clouds were low to this point in our ski trip.
The trip down Blueberry was fast and fun on the new grooming. At the bottom, we turned right and headed up Elk Pass. By the time we reached the Elk Pass – Tyrwhitt – Hydroline junction, the sun appeared and blue sky was all around us. We went a short distance on Tyrwhitt so I could take a picture. There’s 6 cm of new snow on Tyrwhitt and Hydroline which must have fallen on Saturday night.
On the return, we retraced our path down Elk pass and made a detour onto Patterson just to see the sights.
Rather than taking the big hill on Elk Pass, we took Fox Creek which was trackset yesterday. It was enjoyable, but it was easy to notice that there had been some very icy conditions prior to the tracksetting, as it was quite crunchy and hard. I remember the trip reports had said that it was icy and covered with debris prior to the recent snowfall. Some debris is still present, but mostly embedded so it wasn’t an issue.
Another feature on Elk Pass which I now call “Georgina’s fridge” has grown in size and is quite imposing in its spruce tree perch. It’s amazing how it appears every winter. That’s another one you can look for next time you’re on Elk Pass.
Arriving back at the lower reaches of Elk Pass, the temperature was suddenly warmer. As we skied down the Upper Lake connector to the car, it started to rain. The air temperature at the car was +2. I didn’t leave PLPP until 5:30 pm at which time the rain had turned to snow and it was starting to accumulate on the roads.
It’s very windy in Canmore tonight with above zero temperatures.
This morning I posted a quick contest for West Bragg Creek skiers. You could be enjoying a free dinner next time you go skiing there 50-Hour Contest to win a $50 Dinner, and the comments are now enabled, so you can enter. Click over and read Steve Riggs’ entry; it made me laugh.