Thank you for all you do with the XC skiing community!!
I was wondering about something that you may be able to help me with.
We live in Calgary and right behind my house is a very large soccer field.
I often wonder how much money it would take to get someone there to groom and track set the field for a XC skiing.
It’s a large area that would be fantastic for a quick run, especially mid week when it’s hard to get out to other proper trails in the mountains.
Can you please tell me if there is someone I can contact in Calgary regarding this?
The community association would be on board for this, and I agreed to make a few inquiries to find out if this is possible.
Thank you very much!
Thank you!! Very helpful!
I have been involved with grooming of Canmore park, Confederation park plus many school sites for the Foothills ski at school program. Unfortunately it is not just as simple as paying someone to do. You will need to meet (usually area superintendent) with and get approval from the City of Calgary parks department. The City does have grooming equipment stored near Maple Ridge golf course. This equipment, specifically the “tractor” also has other priorities in the city parks so its grooming capacity is limited.
We make our own tracks around our farm fields. This is old school we never used to have groomed trails. It’s not pretty but makes it possible to ski at home . Ski around the track a couple of times and it’s set. For best results use you oldest, widest skis.
Thank you everyone for all the info! Super helpful! I am on a mission to make this happen. 🙂
Also from SkiLocal. Working with the community leagues was very important in getting access to the right people at the city. We need permits and insurance to operate our grooming equipment.
Lucie, Added to my other reply, and after reading other comments, I would be happy to provide further info and suggestions for anyone who would want to get your trails. My email: email@example.com
I am very glad to see some other interest in community trails. I am in Edmonton and have been involved with a group called SkiLocal in which we strive for the exact same goals. I am a big fan of x-c skiing but am hugely against the necessity and hassles of driving a long distance for any access to ski trails. Especially when Edmonton, calls itself a “Winter City”
I/we started out by making our own self-set tracks in local parks and school grounds. After generating some interest from several others we managed to obtain a snowmobile ( by donation from another trail club ) and obtained the necessary equipment for tracking. We also acquired the avid support of our local community leagues (in Edmonon SouthWest) which cover our expenses and which leads to more and more members every year.
We now have over 400 members and I am looking forward to welcoming a lot more this season. We also hit 75 km. of trackset trails by the end of last season ( March 15,2019) You can check us out on Facebook: SkiLocal and also get a look at our a trail maps where try to keep an update on ski conditions on a daily basis.
I help this helps and am forwarding to any comments skiers would provide.
Brilliant, right on response!
If you want to just get at it without a lot of fuss I suggest just making a skier’s track yourself, just like the old days. If you ski a loop 3-4 times it will be in decent shape. Not a thing of beauty like in Kananaskis, but way better than nothing. Free too. There is a nice grass field in a park near my place in the NW, somewhat sheltered from the wind, and this what I do sometimes. We never (well, hardly ever) get so much snow in Calgary that trailbreaking is an onerous chore.
Call the 311 line and/or ask your City Councillor to see if the City will do some x-c trail track setting. It may be worth talking to the local community centre as well. Maybe petition the City as playing politics always helps. My guess is it would take at least a year for the city to make up it’s mind about something like that. If the soccer field is used in the summer, the city may not allow track setting as it could damage the field. Furthermore, the city is cutting the budget back in many areas due to the down turn in our undiversified oil economy.
Personally, I would just make nice straight skier tracks myself through the field. If you want to get innovative, you could pull a sled on a rope with a home made track setter fasten to it. Just fasten some old skis under the sled. Mount some wood spacers between the sled and skis for deeper track sets. You might need some weights. This will give you a great work out which will improve your skiing endurance.
Ski ya later.