What an amazing day at West Bragg Creek. Beautiful weather with sunny skies, little wind, lovely trackset trails, and snow that was still cold(in most places).
The snow temperature in mid-afternoon at the trailhead was -3°C, so I was able to use my waxable skis.
The first kilometre of Mountain Road which is very sun exposed had a few short stretches where the snow was icy and/or wet, but it was easy enough to double-pole my way through.
For the remainder of my tour, I had excellent grip with VR55(0/-3). I did Mountain Road, Mountainview, West Crystal, Loggers, Sundog East, and East Crystal. I also went a little ways up Elbow and took a picture of the excellent conditions.
The only sketchy place was the hill on Mountainview which is very icy. There’s some drifted snow on one side in which I was able to get some grip.
It would be a complete runaway if you were descending. I talked to Jason at the parking lot later and he said he had to bail while going down. He knew he wouldn’t make the corner, and he’s an excellent skier.
Going down the east side of the Mountainview hill was fine. No ice at all. I let Amy go ahead of me to test it out!
The first skier I encountered on Mountain Road was just returning from doing Telephone Loop. He said it was in pretty good shape except for some chunky snow on the hills. Telephone is a trail where it’s prudent to use wider skis, preferably with metal edges.
The best part of the day was seeing all the families with small kids, the smiling faces, and many happy dogs. It is, after all, the start of family day weekend.
When skiing at West Bragg Creek, I really miss Tessa the springer spaniel running alongside me. After 14 winters with my faithful companion, it’s difficult getting accustomed to her absence. I’m grateful, however, for all the skiers who stop to let me pet their dogs and take pictures.
I’m thrilled to read the reports from the skiers who participated in the Nordic Yoho Challenge today. Aaron estimated there was in the vicinity of 100 skiers. If you enjoy skiing in Yoho and Emerald Lake, consider making a donation or buying a $50 membership in the Kicking Horse Ski Club.