After a false start two weeks ago, I’m confident that everything is a go. With even more snow in the forecast, and temperatures below freezing, things will only get better henceforth.
When I arrived at Moraine Lake road trailhead at 1:15 pm, 8 cm of new snow had already accumulated since yesterday’s packing, and was still coming down.
The air and snow temperature were both -1°C. I wasn’t sure how well wax would work with the fresh falling snow, and I wanted to try out my new Fischer TwinSkins, so it was an easy decision to go waxless.
No grooming had occurred since the new snow fell. As I now know from today’s trip reports from Chris Thomas and Helen Read, the trail crew was working on the Great Divide.
My original plan was to ski to the top of the hill at 4.5K and turn around. I was also breaking in brand new boots and didn’t want to overdo it until I knew for sure they would be okay(no blisters in other words).
I had a pretty good skier-set track to follow, but the snow was very soft and consequently slow.
As I was climbing the big hill, at 3.7K I heard it. The snowmobile was coming up fast behind me pulling the roller. I was happy that Tanya stopped to talk for a minute as I had not met her before. She did grooming and tracksetting all last winter and I never had occasion to run into her, so it was nice to finally meet her.
I don’t know exactly how the grooming and tracksetting will proceed. I am guessing that if it continues to snow, there will be another round of packing before any tracksetting occurs. The Weather Network is calling for 2-4 cm tomorrow. The Snow Forecast is predicting 8 cm.
I went a further 2k on the new packing and turned around. It was slow coming down the hill on the fresh packed snow which was still very soft. I was pleased that my Twinskin skis did not grab at all while descending. They fit me well. Boots were good, too.
Back at the trailhead, there was 4 cm of new snow on the car. I took my waxable skis for a short spin to see how wax was performing. I used VR50(0/-4) and had reasonable grip and no sticking.
Snow is more plentiful once past the Sunshine overpass. The passing lane was snow covered and there was one overturned vehicle in the ditch. I received about 4 cm of snow in Canmore.
We have a winner
Pam volunteered to make the draw for the Fischer skis contest. I am happy to announce that the winner is Carol. She has already responded to my notification email, so it’s confirmed. Thanks to everyone who entered. I enjoyed reading the thoughtful comments. Thanks to Fischer for donating the prize.
The Emerald Lake Lodge contest will return in December, so get your photos ready.
I am absolutely thrilled XC season is finally on. I have been anxiously (and obsessively) checking your website every day. Any news from Pocaterra? I assume there is not enough snow. Thank you for the great work and keeping us updated.
That is great news! Are there any other areas beside Moraine Lake which are ready yet?
The Great Divide at Lake Louise has been roll-packed but is still a bit rough with some thin sections.