Update Nov 8, 2018: The Environmental Assessment has been approved by Parks Canada. Start your training. Loppet on! “
My favourite ski race, the Lake Louise to Banff Loppet was a no-go last winter due to the construction at Morant’s curve. I’m happy to see it’s back, and I expect this shortened version will be just as popular. I received this update from Jo Lunn today:
After a one year hiatus, our loppet is returning to the valley! The Bow Valley Parkway reopened this summer following a major road rebuild at Morant’s Curve (leg 1). Pending Parks Canada’s approval of our Environmental Impact Assessment, the loppet will be held on Sunday, January 20 (snow/cold weather backup date of Sunday, January 27.) After lengthy discussions with Parks, we are no longer able to ski through the ‘backswamp’ (leg 5); thus the 2019 loppet will be on our previously used 50km course, ending at the Sawback picnic area. Four legs with 200 skiers (solo or teams of 2, 3 or 4. No solo and team members combined). Shuttles provided back to Banff. We plan to open online registration on Zone4 at 8 a.m. on Sat Dec 1.
Now, many of us (organizers, participants and volunteers) have all felt the ‘loppet love’, but several committee members are feeling the need to take the hefty loppet retirement package. As a committee, we didn’t want 2017 to have been the unintended final loppet after so many great years. Perhaps 30 loppets?! That being said, the committee is looking for some of you nordic ski enthusiasts to pick up the cause for future loppets by joining the organizing committee and assuming some of our roles. Feel confident that the transition would be well supported by outgoing members. Plus, there’s the use of the corporate jet.