Rain, wind and snow

Jan 31, 2020

A snowfall warning has been issued for Lake Louise and Banff…

  • Snow is expected to intensify in the Lake Louise area this evening. 15 to 20 cm is forecast to fall by Saturday evening.
  • The townsite of Banff will receive rain tonight, but change over to snow early Saturday morning. Total amounts in town will be 5 to 10 cm.

A wind warning has been issued for Kananaskis...

  • Strong west winds will develop tonight with gusts over 90 km/h. Winds are expected to remain strong over most areas on Saturday.

When the rain and wind are finished, hopefully there will be enough snow to fix up the trails. 

I’m posting the preamble to the Heritage Guides of Lake Louise trail report to give everyone a heads-up about the lake ice…

“With the current forecast we are expecting all the trails to be in poor condition by morning, we think the lake will have significant snow weight that will create a slush layer on top of the ice that will take days to freeze. It is NOT in indication of ice thickness, just new weight applied to the ice forces it down and water will pool on top. “

Banff Trail Report confusion

Have you been following the saga of the discombobulated Banff trail report?(see background below) Here’s the latest(thanks to Mike W for this)…

“I just called the Banff Info Centre (403-762-1550) to complain about how inconsistent and confusing the Trail Report is.  Apparently the group that updates “Recent Grooming” is not the same group that updates the “Comment” for each trail.  The trail “Comment” date refers to the date the comment was entered, which often but not necessarily coincides with the date of the latest grooming.  “Recent Grooming” is supposed to specifically refer to when trails were last groomed.  The confusion arises when a trail is groomed and the “trail group” updates the trail “Comment” before the “Recent Grooming group” updates the “Recent Grooming” section.  I was told they are working to fix it and it should be done soon.  It sounded like they’ve had a few phone calls about this today.  I suggest everyone phone the Info Centre themselves to complain.  Presumably the more public input they get, the more effort BNP will put into fixing the problem.  Hopefully we won’t have to do this all over again for the BVP and Lake Louise sections of the report!”

Backgound to the above…

Confused by the Banff Trail Report?

What day was Goat Creek trackset, Jan 23rd or Jan 29th?

Look at the Banff trail report(pictured to the right) and try to determine when Goat Creek was trackset. Click on the image to make it larger.

On the morning of Jan 31st, Aldona managed to talk to someone at the Banff information centre who said it was trackset on the 29th. 

A few minutes later…

Aldona Torgunrud and the Regina Ski Club were interested in skiing Goat Creek and were trying to get up-to-date information on the conditions. It shouldn’t be such an ordeal to get accurate information.


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  1. Years ago, a certain mountain man of many many years experience (since passed away, RIP) went into the Louise info centre to book a trip, but the attendant feared he didn’t know what he was doing based on old school minimal supplies and an agenda that didn’t seem doable. The manager was called in. After saying, “do you know who this is”, The solution was to send the attendant out with the mountain man on his trip to learn more. My guess is the folks who fill out this information don’t know what information is needed because they may not do these things themselves. If they did, there probably wouldn’t be an issue, because they would know what info they need to plan a trip. It ain’t rocket science. But still baffling. I’m also assuming the writers are actually in the area. Either way, easy fix.


    The Banff Superintendent must have been on the Gong Show as the Park is run like a Gong Show. The only way the Park will improve is with political pressure from the Park users.

    Having people call in and complain is a very good start. However, the Minister of Environment who is responsible for Parks Canada must see or feel the pressure as well. The Minister is the top boss and the boss must get educated as to what is going on. The heat has to be put on the top brass so they feel the burn and want it stopped. The brass will then likely make some changes on the lower end of the food chain and perhaps then things will change for the better in Banff.

    The Minister of Environment who is in charge of Parks Canada is Jonathan Wilkinson. You can find his email address by Googling “MP email lists Canada”. I would provide the email but this message board tends to erase when I do so.

  3. Thanks to everyone for helping us get trail info for Goat Creek. I didn’t realize this is a such a point of contention with Banff Park. At any rate the trail was wonderful today despite some snowshoe tracks and needles. Of course the messy weather tonight will change all that but I thought I owed it to this forum to put in a report. Again thanks everyone!

    Thank you, we appreciate the update! -Bob

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