Advice for Rodrigo and Nicole

by Bob Truman on November 24, 2018

in XC

I don’t think anything exists for a xc skier without a vehicle to access the places Rodrigo would like to ski at(the ones which are not accessible by Roam Transit). I’m publishing his email in the hopes that someone can provide advice. 

“Hi Bob,

First of all I’d like to congratulate you for your great blog!

Well, my wife Nicole and I are Vancouverites who are coming to Lake Louise without a vehicle. (: 

We are staying  at the Mountaineer Lodge from the 1st to the 8th and we will definitely take 3-4 days doing Moraine Lake and Lake O’Hara/Great Divide, the other trails that are open in the area according to Parks Canada and will take public transit to Canmore Nordic Centre — and to Tunnel Mountain for some night skiing as well as Sundance and Spray River if the snow comes to Banff.

But we were trying to understand if there was any rideshare system or other options for non drivers in order to reach places like Lake Minnewanka, Elk Pass, Blueberry Hill, Bow Valley, Johnson Lake, Boom Lake and Baker Creek — as well as any other recommendations you have.

Thank you again for your great service to the global Xcountry ski community to discover the Rockies!!”

******

Thanks to trip reports from Kat, Martin and Jip, it sounds like West Bragg Creek is skiable again.

Piper on the urban ski tour. Photo by Steve Riggs.

It was nice to read about Steve Riggs’ and Piper’s “Urban Ski Tour” in the city. Environment Canada tallies the official Calgary snowfall amount yesterday at 13.2 cm. When we took Tessa for a walk in the park, I was lamenting that I didn’t bring my skis along! 

Surely someone was at Elk Pass today?? I was hoping for a report. 

If you enjoy skiing and hiking in K-Country, consider a donation to the Friends of Kananaskis. Trail Love – Give back fundraiser

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 GordN November 25, 2018 at 5:04 pm

I’d suggest joint groups on meetup dot com, the odds are low it works out but you could even try creating an event and ask for rides?

A XC Facebook page is awesome idea too.

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2 GordN November 25, 2018 at 6:48 pm

joining , not joint…oh so many levels….

wait… is AN awesome idea too…speaking of joints….

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3 Diana Piggott November 25, 2018 at 10:23 pm

😀

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4 Tanya November 25, 2018 at 4:04 pm

I don’t have any great advice for the couple but I wish there was a xc ski version of the Hike Alberta group on Facebook. I’d love to join up with people to get out mid week and would happily pick people up to go skiing and share rides/split gas costs. Maybe you need a tab on your website Bob for people looking for ski partners.

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5 Bob Truman November 25, 2018 at 4:07 pm

If someone wants to start a Facebook group for that purpose, I’ll provide a link.

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6 Rodrigo November 25, 2018 at 5:17 pm

That would be a great idea Tanya!! We have one for Cypress in Vancouver! The cab to the trails we want to do outside Banff cost almost the same as the flight from Vancouver, so we may not do all of them.

We will definitely do all the trails in the Lake Louise area, but if the snow comes to Banff before the 8th, what is your favorite trail in the area outside the one on Lake Louise? We have heard between:

Spray River
Lake Minnewanka
Elk Pass
Blueberry Hill
Bow Valley
Johnson Lake
Boom Lake
Baker Creek
Emerald Lake

It’s going to be my first visit to the Canadian side of the Rockies and I still have so much to explore here in the Southern Coast of BC.

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7 Helen Read November 24, 2018 at 9:01 pm

Check out ROAM Transit as they are offering FREE bus from Lk Louise to Banff thru Dec 2nd. Fairly reasonable rates beyond free dates. MLR and GD will always be good during your stay so if you want to explore your surroundings with the free bus, feel “free” to ROAM. If Banff West Spray opens up with new snow, you can ski all way to Canmore and back on one of Skier Bob’s all-time favorite trails!!!

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8 Rodrigo November 25, 2018 at 5:12 pm

Thank you very much Helen, I am definitely sending all my energy for snow in Banff so we can try it!!!

We will definitely do all the trails in the Lake Louise area, but if the snow comes to Banff before the 8th, what is your favorite trail in the area outside the one on Lake Louise? We have heard between:

Spray River
Lake Minnewanka
Elk Pass
Blueberry Hill
Bow Valley
Johnson Lake
Boom Lake
Baker Creek
Emerald Lake

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9 Helen Read November 25, 2018 at 9:26 pm

You sound so excited to get to The Mountaineer. In early Dec., many of the trails you mentioned are just not ready. People love ice skating on Johnson Lake like now but I’ve never skied there. Sometimes Cascade Fire Rd at top of Minnewanka loop is ready but not currently. Ditto for Banff West Spray. You might be surprised how much skiing you can do in and around Lk Louise. The ski into Moraine Lake is 12 kms one way, passing a small avalanche zone which is usually safe at this time of the season. Fairview could be tracked by time you get here and Lower and Upper Tramline takes you all way from The Village up to the Chateau Lake Louise (~5 kms). Great Divide goes 10-11 kms all way to O’Hara end (one way). One can ski all way into Lake O’Hara 12 kms one way up that Fire Rd (ungroomed but lots of skier tracks). If you wanted to do a light touring trip, start close to the Lk Louise ski hill and you can ski up to Boulder Pass on partial ski out and skier-set trail. Start at Fish Creek parking lot as if skiing all way into Skoki Lodge-too long for a day trip as goes over two passes. The Yoho area offers Yoho Valley Road which goes about 6 kms up towards Takakkaw Falls where one should not travel beyond the switchbacks without avi gear. At this time of the season, you can often ski Elk Pass/Blueberry all in one day but getting there will be the issue and it is still not trackset. This is my email if I can be of any further help. helenread@shaw.ca

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10 Diana Piggott November 25, 2018 at 10:26 pm

Helen, we used to ski some trails around Johnson Lake in the early 1990’s, but they were closed to protect wildlife. I thought it ironic that soon after that, they set fire to the place!

I remember skiing around Johnson Lake in 1999. -Bob

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11 Rodrigo November 26, 2018 at 6:48 pm

Hi Helen, thank you so much for the tips!! We will be sending a lot of energy to make sure decent snow falls for the Banff trails before the 8th.

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