Typical spring skiing – 20% slower

by Bob Truman on April 6, 2017

in Animal tracks & sightings, Kananaskis, PLPP(P Lougheed Park)

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In mid-winter on cold snow, I can ski the Tyrwhitt loop at an average speed of 9 km/H on my waxable skis. Today, with waxless skis(zeros), on wet snow, I averaged 7.3 Km/H.

Beautiful new tracksetting as I started up Elk Pass

The temperature when I arrived at 11 a.m. was +5°C. Three vehicles in the parking lot. 

Edge creep will soon take its toll on this spot on Moraine

The new tracksetting on Elk Pass looked absolutely wonderful and the tracks were reasonably firm. Things were starting to soften when I reached Tyrwhitt, which also had brand new tracksetting and I was the first one over it.

I made sure I had my bear spray handy when I was skiing past the Tyrwhitt picnic table. It was here that I spotted bear tracks a few years ago in April. 

I met BarbBanff at the meadows who was doing the loop in the opposite direction. She told me to look for the wolverine tracks on Pocaterra, and sure enough, the typical three-print-diagonal tracks were obvious. 

It started to rain while I was on Tyrwhitt and it was coming down pretty good by the time I got back to the Elk pass parking lot. 

Hugging tree on Elk Pass

Whiskey Jack was still in good shape, clean with good tracks and a bit of fresh snow. Tracks were well skied-in otherwise I would have been clumping on the zero skis. 

Moraine also had brand new tracksetting but the trail is starting to look a little tired. As the snow melts, more and more of the old debris starts to surface. I met Barb again on Moraine and she had been over Fox Creek and said it was okay but somewhat dirty. 

If you’re looking for the hugging tree on Elk Pass, I took note of the distance today. It’s exactly 3.7K from the Elk Pass trailhead, or 1.7K from the north Hydroline junction. 

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Pete April 7, 2017 at 3:07 pm

I saw a wolverine on the road to Lake O’Hara a number of years ago and reported it to Parks Canada. They definitely monitor them in Yoho and probably in the other parks nearby. Not sure if they do it in Kananaskis though.

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2 GordN April 7, 2017 at 2:02 pm

Isn’t there some group asking for report of sightings, I would assume in the winter tracks are a good as a visual? Can’t recall who it was, Seems to me I saw it in Cdn Geographic.

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3 GordN April 9, 2017 at 10:33 pm

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