I had an excellent day of skiing at Lake Louise on the Pipestone trails, Moraine Lake road, Fairview, and Tramline.
As I was getting ready in the Pipestone parking lot, two groups of skiers came in and gave me the information I needed to decide what skis to use. One skier on Salomon skins said he had great grip but the skis were grabbing on the downhills. Another skier who was using wax said she had some difficulties with the snow sticking. I was advised that fishscale waxless would be best.
Prepared for all eventualities, I had three pairs of waxless skis: Skintecs, fishscale, and zeros, as well as my waxable skis. Taking all opinions under advisement, I decided to use my waxable skis. I figured by this time of day the snow was cold enough, and skied-in well enough, to not have any sticking issues. It turned out to be a good choice.
I used VR45(-2/-8) for most of the day with good results. The only sketchy part is the first 2K from the Pipestone trailhead. It did rain yesterday at this lower elevation and I started out with VR50(0/-4) which worked well in conjunction with a skiff of new snow which was in the tracks. it snowed off and on throughout the day. The tracks near the trailhead were a bit glazed.
As you ski further north, the conditions improve considerably. At 5k on the Pipestone loop I switched to VR45(-2/-8) which I used for the remainder of the day(including on Tramline, Moraine Lake road, and Fairview). There’s about 3 cm of fresh snow over the recent tracksetting at the north end, and I expect there will be a bit of fresh snow in the tracks Saturday morning because it was trying really hard to snow. I love these trails when conditions are good.
Upper Tramline and Moraine Lake road are in excellent condition. Fairview has 10 cm of fresh snow and it was beautiful. Tracks are still reasonably good and surprisingly fast for all the snow.
Don’t expect any recent tracksetting on the Upper Lake Louise trails because the snowmobile is broken. These are the trails which Chateau tracksetter Jeff Douglas usually reports on.
Air temperature when I left was 0°C.