Backcountry 2016-2017

Alf Skrastins has provided a list of trails that are suitable for xc touring skis.

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Scroll down to see the trip reports. To leave a report, click on add one.

{ 111 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Pete March 26, 2017 at 12:26 am

Johnston creek
Did a long ski up Johnston creek today with a friend starting from Moose meadows on the 1A. A very thin skiff of snow covered the packed trail up to where it joined with the trail from Johnston canyon. From there it was very hard packed and icy. We used skins and stayed on the sides of the icy trail where possible. Once at the ink pots we had good conditions and only sunk about a centimetre into the hard snowpack.We continued on the summer trail past Larry’s camp (lunch stop) eventually ending up at the wardens cabin. After enjoying the sun on the porch and putting on skin wax (very wet snow by this point), we continued for approximately 2.5km further up the valley until our 4pm turnaround time. Our return to the ink pots wasn’t fast as the snow was still very sticky but still supportive. After finishing the climb out from the ink pots we removed our skins for a very fast (and scary!) descent back to moose meadows on an extremely icy and bumpy trail (not recommended unless you wear crampons!) It took us around 11 hours total to do approximately 30km.

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2 Alf Skrastins March 24, 2017 at 8:32 pm

Chester/HRT
Today was an enjoyable combination of on-trail touring, off-trail wandering with some powder turns along the way. I took the Chester Lake trail and was happy to see that the new signage is now effectively directing snowshoers to the actual snowshoe trail. Before getting to Chester Lake, we followed a series of glades to the creek that flows out of 3-Lakes Valley and followed the creek all the way down to the bridge on the Rummel-Chester portion of the High Rockies Trail. It was interesting to note that nobody appears to be using this part of the High Rockies Trail, which connects back onto the Chester Lake trail. Of course, there is no signage to indicate that it even exists.
It snowed most of the day.

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3 Henry March 25, 2017 at 4:29 pm

With the $30M the Liberals gave for the completion of the Trans Canada Trail, maybe a sign or two will appear in the future -)

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4 Alf Skrastins March 22, 2017 at 11:23 pm

Evan Thomas Valley Loop
Late March is when the groomed XC ski trail season winds down. However, it also marks the start of the spring touring season. The snow-pack depth reaches it’s peak about the end of March to mid-April. Melt-freeze cycles produce a firm base that allows you to ski over many buried obstacles. It is the time to go beyond the groomed tracks and explore around. Todays tour is an example.
I started by touring up the Evan Thomas creek bed. Lots of snow coverage and all creek crossings were nicely bridged. This is a popular route for ice climbers, heading to Chantilly Falls, Moonlight Falls and other frozen waterfalls along an impressive area of canyon walls. From there, I headed up along the east edge of the Evan Thomas prescribed burn.
As you drive north, along Highway #40, right around Wedge Pond, you can see a burned area on Mt. McDougall to the east. It looks as if someone has pulled a rake down the slope. This is because strips of forest were logged out of the area, before it was set ablaze for a prescribed burn. Wider clearings were cut along the east and west sides of the burn, to act as fire-breaks, preventing the blaze from spreading farther than intended. These fire-breaks make it easy to access the burned forest.
The east fire-break follows the edge of an impressive little canyon. You could wander around in the lower half of the prescribed burn, but I chose to cross the Evan Thomas valley trail and continue touring into the upper half of the burn.
The logged strips and open, burned forest allow you to travel virtually anywhere you please. Just connect together any open areas that appeal to you. My route took me up and down several times, before reaching the wide fire break on the west edge of the burn. This gentle fire break offers the best views of the Kananaskis Valley peaks. At the bottom of the fire-break, just find a break in the strip of trees to get onto the Evan Thomas valley trail. After a short distance, you end up on the not-so-recently groomed Evan Thomas XC ski trail.
https://goo.gl/photos/ErsWUd9fBkH9jRLv8

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5 Pete March 23, 2017 at 1:11 am

Hi Alf! Looks like a really nice tour. Did you start from Evan Thomas parking lot or did you just go from the side of the highway?

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6 Henry March 23, 2017 at 7:40 am

I don’t know anyone with the same wonderful sense of youthful exploratory joy as Alf. Keep those legs moving!

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7 Henry March 23, 2017 at 8:51 am

re. …”sense of youthful exploratory joy” – with a nod to Chuck and Jeannette, of course!

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8 Alf Skrastins March 23, 2017 at 8:50 am

Either option works right now. I started on the ski trail from the Evan Thomas parking lot and cut over to the creek bed as soon as I could. There was ice on the groomed trail at that point, but nice snow in the creek bed.

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9 Steve Riggs March 23, 2017 at 9:29 pm

That looks like a nice little loop! I take it that you were on your waxless Voile fat skis. Any idea of how the old road/trail to Evan Thomas Pass fared in the 2013 flood? I haven’t skied up that way since about the mid 90’s, but it seemed like it, or the side road to below the McKay hills, were fairly well travelled once upon a time, despite being a long slog to ski all the way to the pass.

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10 Alf Skrastins March 24, 2017 at 12:47 am

There were ski tracks on the old Evan-Thomas road that continued on towards the pass. They were covered by about 3-4cm of new snow, so it’s certainly worth a try. There were a couple of chunks of the Evan Thomas XC trail that disappeared in the 2013 flood. The too-narrow, twisty re-routes that served as temporary fixes were replaced by a beautiful new snow-cat friendly alignment… which explains why that part of the trail was properly groomed again this winter. The new portion of trail is so well done, that you don’t even notice where it merges on and off of the old roadbed.

Yes… sometimes wax-less skis are just the right tool!

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11 Martin Jones & Jip! March 24, 2017 at 4:14 pm

Thanks for info Alf, I took a short tour up Evan Thomas today starting from Wedge pond, didn’t go to far just a bit beyond the first ice climb, followed some of your tracks and made a few of my own. There were several ice and rock falls right next to where the tracks hugged the rock as I passed, best to stay away from the cliffs during these warmer temperatures. Really nice in there, snow was getting soft by 2pm and skis starting to stick particularly on the old grooming back towards the pond.

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12 Nic March 22, 2017 at 10:51 am

Hello, has anyone done the ski out from Assiniboine via Bryant Creek to Mt Shark recently? Any beta would be appreciated!

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13 Pete March 22, 2017 at 7:12 pm

Try contacting Assiniboine lodge. They can probably tell you if any of the naiseters or lodge guests have skied out that way and when.

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14 Chuck March 20, 2017 at 9:00 pm

PARADISE VALLEY – March 20

Today was a magnificent day to explore Paradise Valley. We went further than expected because snow conditions were excellent. Minus 5 to start, and blue skies all day. Check it out at:
https://1drv.ms/a/s!AhVZXBE7vMV7hkXveXQrxA4DsVR3
This is considered a backcountry trip due to current avalanche conditions, but if you stay to the left side of the creek, you will avoid the avalanche risk.

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15 Diana Piggott March 20, 2017 at 10:01 pm

Paradise, indeed! Beautiful 🙂

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16 Pat Auriemma March 21, 2017 at 7:27 am

So that’s what Paradise looks like in the sun, it seems every time I go it’s snowing. Great pics. Beautiful spot.

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17 Henry March 21, 2017 at 10:04 am

The long tree shadows curving over the pillows of snow near the creek would be a painters delight!

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18 Alpine Jimmy March 21, 2017 at 10:11 pm

Looks like a great way to start Spring. Locations of any other backcountry gems you would care to share?

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19 Pat Auriemma March 13, 2017 at 10:03 am

Assiniboine Pass

The objective of the day was to see if I could reach Assiniboine lodge in a day. I’d like to either stay at the lodge or camp in the vicinity one day. Ideally, I would fly in and save my strength for touring in the Assiniboine area. So I was basically wanting to scope things out! I started at the Mt. Shark trailhead at about 9:30. It was mostly cloudy but good visibility. There was about 10 cms of new snow on the tracks, with the temp about -5. At about the 8km mark I started meeting people who were skiing out from Assiniboine lodge, so I benefited from having skier track set trails. The temperature warmed up at about 11 and the snow started to transform, becoming sticky, I had to scrap off some wax from my metal edged light touring skis. Met about 10 more people who were skiing out, some on tele skis but most of them on AT gear. They all flew in to Assiniboine lodge and were saving costs by skiing out instead of flying out. I made it to about 1 km to the top of Assiniboine pass, when I decided that I had to turn back, it was 2:45!! I got back to the car at 7:15. After about 40 kms of single track touring, I was able to see some beautiful expansive country, wide open meadows, beautiful creeks and some really deep snow. I was grateful that I had skier track trails to follow, I would not have gone nearly as far without them. I’m going to attempt it again someday, hopefully I’ll have a reservation at the lodge so I don’t need to ski back the same day! By the way, one of the trail reporters, Chuck said last week that this was the time to explore this part of Banff, he was right. If the snow would have been colder, it would have been great. I loved the long tour, the eye candy and the challenge. Keep gliding!

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20 Pete March 13, 2017 at 12:29 pm

Well done Pat! I’ve been skiing into Assiniboine annually for twenty years now unfortunately things didn’t work out this season so I didn’t make it in. It’s a great area for skiing and exploring but it’s a long haul to get there!

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21 Pat Auriemma March 13, 2017 at 1:46 pm

Thanks Pete, a little disappointed I didn’t make it to the lodge but that’s ok, now I know what I’m dealing with. Do you drag AT gear all the way up to Assiniboine? If you do, hat’s off to you!

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22 Pete March 13, 2017 at 2:28 pm

Friends of mine have used AT gear to head in and usually regret it (especially the next day) as we always do the ski in in a long day. Others use NNNBC and light metal edge skis that seem to work well. I prefer to use tele skis and leather boots (yes some of us still use leather boots!). I’ve skied in various times and had to break trail from shark all the way in which makes for a very long day and we ended up skiing in the dark. Trips like that require a team of strong trailbreakers. A few years ago it was raining as we skied in and we had to start a fire at Bryant shelter to try to dry out. Breaking trail through the knee deep soggy snow up the pass was very difficult. By the time we got to the pass it was dark and snowing so we ended up going the wrong way for a bit. We still made it but it probably took us 12 hours+to ski in. Once I found a regular x-country ski broken in half at the pass. Not sure how that person made out but it must have been a nightmare trying to get out of there!

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23 Pat Auriemma March 13, 2017 at 4:01 pm

Thanks for the info Pete. I had a NNNBC binding and light touring skis, I just need to get skins or kick skins so I don’t have to boot pack as much. Take care.

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24 Steve Riggs March 13, 2017 at 9:46 pm

Good work, Pat!
I had hoped to ski in (or maybe fly in-ski out) for a few nights at Naiset this year, but work has got in the way. It’s been 12 years now since my last trip there. It’s a tradeoff as far as what ski setup to use, but I agree with Pete- my choice in the past has been a lighter tele setup using narrower (waist 70’ish) skis than currently in vogue, low Scarpa T3 plastic boots for warmth and control, and a more modern tele binding with a free pivot. While not the best for the large amount of gentle trail going in and out, I’m willing to give up some of the fast travel, in return for stability and turnability, especially when lugging a pack with 4 days supplies. This also increases the range of options once at Assiniboine, especially if you like to make turns. I do own an NNN-BC setup with metal edged light touring skis, but personally would not consider NNN-BC adequate for the skiing that I would to do at Assiniboine- mainly due to the somewhat flimsy boot-binding combo that lacks torsional rigidity.
In the AT world there has been movement towards much lighter skis and more pared down boots and bindings, for “Ski-Mo racing”, which hopefully will trickle down into the touring realm as well.

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25 Pat Auriemma March 13, 2017 at 11:11 pm

Thanks Steve. I agree with you that the NNN BC wouldn’t work too well once at Assiniboine but I was toying with the idea of getting AT gear choppered in and out and skiing in and out with the NNN-BC. Then I say to myself “How realistic is that?” I guess it’s like you said, the trade off between the gentle terrain in which I personally have a reluctance to not want to give up my faster travel there for the stability and turnability in the steeper sections. I always say to myself “What good is the fatter ski if I can’t get to the steeper section in the first place?” So then I end up having to struggle a little more on the downhills. I’m thinking of maybe using skins not only as a climbing tool but also as a way to slow me down in steeper areas, when descending. Which doesn’t make much sense because you work hard for the downhill, why do you want to slow yourself down on the down? To that I say simply, for safety reasons. I guess I really like to tour, and I like to climb because of the views it grants me or because it gets me to a lodge or through a pass but I like to tour for distance more than for the downhill experience. I have AT skis with a 80 MM waist and I want to go on something thinner rather than fatter!! Thank you Steve for your reply. I appreciate the insightful information. Take care

26 JeremyN March 13, 2017 at 2:31 pm

Thank you for sharing your simple put, eloquentl tale of your little adventure Pat. Many of us (over) think such ‘through-ski’ excursions as light touring as I’m often perplexed seeing so many traverse in AT gear rather than efficient touring skis -but guess it does reflect the end game / objective for so many these days (in free riding) rather than the journey itself. Cheers.

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27 Pat Auriemma March 13, 2017 at 4:07 pm

I agree Jeremy. AT seems to get a lot of the attention and marketing these days but the efficiency of the light touring ski is fantastic. I own both types and I’ve made the mistake of using AT when I should have been using light touring, and vice versa but that’s life, you live and learn. Thanks for your reply. Take care.

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28 Pete March 13, 2017 at 5:52 pm

The majority of my friends I used to tour with just ski on AT nowadays. (therefore harder to find ski partners for long tours!) It seems that people with a background in resort skiing on downhill equipment prefer AT as it’s closer to what they’re used to. I was never a resort skier (or a fan of them for that matter) and grew up on x-country and telemark skis so that’s what I prefer. I own AT equipment but rarely use it.

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29 Normand March 13, 2017 at 11:08 pm

Great job Pat getting that far in such a beautiful remote area, any season of the year. For having skied to the Assiniboine lodge and back on a day from Mt Shark, here are a few tips. Definitely a bonus to have a broken trail by the outgoers; NNN-BC binding on light touring skis (57 mm waist); double camber skis are a must to minimize the use of skins and take advantage of the grip wax pocket; mini-skins can work ok going up the pass if a trail broken, otherwise long skins will be needed, making it a bit slower. My light touring skis are 205 cm, but that is only for touring; if spending a few days for turns, I really want AT-Dynafit setting. With light gears, a good wax job and a broken trail, done it car-2-car in 10 hrs solo. As soon as you have to break trail, you loose momentum and won’t make it to the lodge and back in a day; been there, done that twice before to the Pass. Good luck and be safe.

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30 Gord Ferguson March 14, 2017 at 8:43 am

Thanks for the interesting post. Regarding touring equipment, I have a spectrum of ski set-ups for a variety of trips; NNN-BC bindings and boots on Rossignol metal-edged skis, G3 Targa-Ascent tele bindings on some light downhill skis and Scarpa T4 plastic boots, and then Dynafit tech bindings on big skis with light AT boots for steep terrain.
I have a very narrow pair of skins for my NNN-BC skis and I also use them on my tele set-up for flat touring. It works really well to use a thin strip of climbing skin on a much wider ski on rolling terrain. You get kick and glide. Narrow skins are more difficult to find these days but you could cut a wider skin in half to make a narrow strip.
Another hack I find useful is power straps for the Scarpa T4 tele boots. I made 2 velcro straps, 2 inch wide to wrap around the ankle of the T4’s. This allows much greater support if you have to do some powder skiing with you light tele set-up.

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31 Pat Auriemma March 14, 2017 at 11:49 am

Thanks for sharing Gord. The info I’ve gotten over the last day or so has been great. Much appreciated. Take care.

32 Pat Mahaffey March 18, 2017 at 6:34 pm

Pat — after you have skied in and out a couple of times, I recommend you fly in and out. There is so much skiing – both touring and downhill – in the Assiniboine area that I prefer to spend my time there! Also, I recommend that you stay at the wonderful Naiset Cabins, which are MUCH cheaper than the the very expensive Lodge!

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33 Pat Auriemma March 19, 2017 at 3:49 pm

Thanks for your comment Pat. Much appreciated. Take care.

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34 Steve Riggs March 10, 2017 at 8:24 am

Campbell Icefield Chalet- February 18-25.
As in most winters, Jo and I spent two weeks as “hut keepers” at the Campbell Icefield backcountry ski lodge, situated northeast of Golden, just west of the Freshfields and the border of Banff National Park. Pictured below is the second of our two weeks, consisting of a group of friends, organized by us.
For the first 3 days, snow and temperatures around zero predominated- making for really fine powder skiing in the glades and trees, but not so great conditions for cameras or photography. By Tuesday afternoon though, the clouds began to lift, and the remainder of the week was a skier’s dream- with plenty of blue sky to go along with the perfect snow.

https://steveriggs.smugmug.com/Campbell-Icefield-2017

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35 MaSid March 10, 2017 at 9:32 am

Looks like a touring dream back there. Very nice.

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36 Pat Auriemma March 10, 2017 at 9:56 am

That’s fantastic. Great pictures. I’m jealous!

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37 Alpine Jimmy March 10, 2017 at 10:26 am

Awesome photos. Thanks for sharing.

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38 GordN March 10, 2017 at 6:09 pm

Sweet!, good call on the B&W one, perfect for that shot. Very “Harmon” esk? esq?

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39 Alf Skrastins February 28, 2017 at 11:34 pm

Amiskwi Lodge
I spent two weeks in February at Amiskwi Lodge, just north of Yoho Park. You helicopter in to Amiskwi Lodge from Golden, B.C.. The lodge is located near tree-line, so most of the touring and turning happens in that magical zone at the upper edge of the forest and in the alpine. A variety of glades, bowls, a lake and a burned forest provide great destinations.
We got about 40cm of new snow over the 2 weeks on about a 180cm snow-pack. Temperatures ranged from 0C to -20C.
https://goo.gl/photos/4tCdYvmGQpX8Zohr6

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40 Diana Piggott March 8, 2017 at 6:00 pm

Spectacular! Pardon my drooling………..

“Posthumous Bowl” – does that mean you died and went to heaven??

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41 Henry March 11, 2017 at 9:16 am

Ha. Perhaps its the easier run that is beside ‘Posthumerus Bowl’, where you come out with one limb less than you started with -)

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42 JeremyN March 11, 2017 at 8:33 am

wow. exquisitely sublime. the secret is out!

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43 Pat Mahaffey March 18, 2017 at 6:27 pm

Alf,
It is good to know you are still such a dedicated skier!
My kids are asking me to go to Amiskwi next winter with them, but I was wondering whether there is much touring terrain, as opposed to downhill skiing (the old knees aren’t what they used to be). Also, is it possible to ski up to Kiwetinok Pass? Thanks in advance for any advice!

(PS. I heard a rumour about the possibility of helicoptering in to the Kiwetinok Pass area and then skiing to Mitchell Hut, which sounds like a very cool idea. Do you think it is feasible?)

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44 Kerry V March 19, 2017 at 7:38 am

That is highly unlikely, as Kiwetinok Pass is well within the park. There is nowhere that you could fly to on the park boundary that would not require significant cross country travel with an uphill component to get to the SM Hut.

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45 Alf Skrastins March 19, 2017 at 8:17 am

I have updated the album with more photos that show more of the touring terrain. Amiskwi is one of my favourite places for family lodge trips. The terrain is very well suited for longer tours, or tours interspersed with ski runs. One Norwegian family described the area as being “just like Norway… except with spectacular mountains all around”. If you know how patriotic Norwegians are, that’s high praise! The touring is varied, with destinations that include ridge-tops, tree-line bowls, Amiskwi Lake and an extensive burn area. Most people never get to all the terrain, because they get distracted by the powder skiing.
At Amiskwi Pass, you are much too far from Kiwetinok Pass to get there and back in a day. Besides, the terrain is far more interesting near Amiskwi Lodge anyhow.
No chance of flying to Kiwetinok Pass, since it is inside Yoho Park.

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46 Pete February 26, 2017 at 10:38 pm

Did a late afternoon ski up to Chester lake and the elephant rocks with my wife today. Excellent conditions and quiet as most people were gone by the time we started. Managed to crack a tele binding near the elephant rocks but it held together long enough to get me back to the car. Would have been a slightly longer trip otherwise!

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47 Chuck February 24, 2017 at 7:46 pm

McArthur Lake – Feb 24

With the excellent grooming up to Lake O’Hara, and the longer days, it is now opportune to explore further up:
https://1drv.ms/a/s!AhVZXBE7vMV7hUnenMM5NmzCKuEo

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48 Henry February 27, 2017 at 8:01 am

Simply spectacular!
BTW, don’t tell me that there are captions on this set of images, because I’m on my 24″ monitor at work and I don’t see any. -)

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49 Chuck February 27, 2017 at 10:17 pm

Yes Henry… the Captions are there… did you:
Click on the info icon (“I” in a circle).
Don’t worry… Bob was the first (but he deleted my instructions), and I hope you will be the last!
In any case, I hope the photos speak for themselves… I am often at a loss for words in these spectacular places.

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50 Henry February 28, 2017 at 12:01 pm

Clicking on the ‘i’ did the trick. Tx.

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51 Pat Auriemma March 8, 2017 at 2:36 pm

Hi Chuck, I tried to go up to McArthur Lake about 3 weeks ago but I found the steep terrain after the Elizabeth Parker Hut too tough to climb. Did you have climbing skins on? I’m wondering if I’m using the right route. I’d love to see McArthur in the winter. Thanks Chuck. Pat Auriemma

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52 Chuck March 17, 2017 at 6:00 pm

Hi Pat,
No, we did not use Climbing Skins.
It is a short steep climb just past the Elizabeth Parker Hut, but it had been skied, so a mix of Herringbone and Side Stepping worked fine for us.
Sorry for the delay in responding… your reply must have got by during a flurry!

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53 Pat Auriemma March 17, 2017 at 7:57 pm

Thanks Chuck. That’s good to know. I just need to persevere a little more when I hit the steep section! I’m looking forward to seeing Lake McArthur in the winter. Take care.

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54 Chuck February 22, 2017 at 8:26 pm

TAKAKKAW FALLS – Feb 22

Seeing that Parks Canada rated the Yoho Valley Road as one of the few places in GOOD condition, and that it seemed to be snowing everywhere else, today was the day to extend our January 20 trip into the backcountry.
Assuming that many would have travelled here over the long weekend, I just took my waxable track skis, and that allowed me to complete the return trip in just 4 hours. But remember this route is exposed to significant avalanche slopes… be aware.
An awesome day:
https://1drv.ms/a/s!AhVZXBE7vMV7hUH_Of7H9xxU5Kk4

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55 Henry February 23, 2017 at 10:51 am

Thanks for sharing your trip into one of the most beautiful spots on Earth. It’s great to see the Yoho glacier guarding the end of the valley. The climbers don’t appear to have been on the main falls. Is that right?

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56 Chuck February 24, 2017 at 7:45 pm

The climbers ARE on the main falls!
They got an early start from the shelter, and told me how exciting the ice was at the top of Takakkaw Falls. They could see the water rushing past through only about 4 inches of clear ice!
They were just at the bottom of their down climb when I saw them.
Thanks Henry for making sure I clarified this.

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57 Henry February 25, 2017 at 8:08 am

Ah. So are the two people who are standing at the bottom of the main falls in one of your photos the same climbers then?

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58 Chuck February 25, 2017 at 5:43 pm

Yes… in fact, if you look closely, they are visible in 6 of the photos!
Might need a magnifying glass to see them for the first photo. I could hear them calling to each other before I saw them… the only sounds in a most beautiful valley, as you call it.

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59 Henry February 26, 2017 at 7:05 am

Thanks for clarifying. I can now see them in photos 15 and 17!
So they park their snowmobiles, ski over, and then climb. My goodness.

60 MaSid February 26, 2017 at 9:46 am

Many ski in on AT gear, climb the falls (in the same boots) and ski out all in a day. No private snow mobiles allowed. Mount field can also be as ascended in a day from the road.

61 Chuck February 26, 2017 at 6:53 pm

My Gosh Henry… Perhaps you are reading the photo captions! (Click on the info icon (“I” in a circle))
Photo #16 clearly indicates the 2 Parks Staff who are doing their snow profile on one side of the valley, and photo #17 identifies the 2 who are climbing Takakkaw Falls on the other side of the valley. The climbers had skied up to the shelter the night before (making a nice track for me), and got an early start on their ice climb.
I chatted to both parties.
The good news is that you (and maybe others) have some entertaining reading to do from previous posts!

62 Henry February 27, 2017 at 7:55 am

Okay, Chuck, I see. It’s my darned laptop. The screen doesn’t show your captions without scrolling. You must be wondering -)

63 MaSid February 14, 2017 at 12:52 pm

Parks Canada reports they induced a large avalanche on the vermillion peak slide path via dropped explosives. Full upper bowl went from top to bottom ripping out old burnt timber along the side of the slide path en route, stopping at the road due to a berm.

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64 Alf Skrastins February 5, 2017 at 11:45 pm

Chickadee Valley, Feb 5, 2017
I went up into Chickadee Valley today, with a couple of friends, who had never been there. There was 20cm of fresh snow and only a few other skiers on the tour up the valley. The trail is nicely packed and the touring was easy on the fresh snow. We did some turns at the end of the valley, but the snow is still not reliably supportive off of the packed trails. It snowed lightly all day and the temperature remained steady at about -18C.

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65 MaSid January 30, 2017 at 6:51 pm

Mon Jan 30: Quartz ridge.
Blustery up in the meadows and fierce on the ridge. Aiming for Quartz summit, but not very inviting, plus the wind blasted upper ascent slope with rock peppers, so called it a day after getting on to the north ridge proper. Fresh snow and wind obliterated any old track and mostly burried mine. Meadows Ski well, no wallowing. A bit here and there in the trees when missing the track, around trees and rocks. Ankle ski pens otherwise, unless on an exposed wind crust. Lots of snow getting blown around, big plumes coming off the upper ridge and summit, wind deposition on east side, some minor cracking hinting of slab development.

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66 Gord Ferguson January 30, 2017 at 7:59 pm

We were skiing the Dive today in that wild wind. I didn’t dare let go of my skis when putting them on. Much of the snow from Quartz and beyond has collected in the lee areas, (including the Dive) so we we’re happy about that. Everything else, pretty much boiler plate.

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67 Normand January 30, 2017 at 8:57 am

My plan was to ski to Egypt Lake and back yesterday, from Red Earth Creek and Pharaoh Creek, with light touring skis. After about 700 m on the re-routed trail of Pharaoh Creek, following the 2013 floods, it became evident that I would not be making it. The old trail was much easier and feasible even on x-c skis. So, I turned back and headed to Shadow Lake, hoping to get at least to Haiduk Lake. “Only” got to Re-21, before the climb to that lake. Decided to turnaround at 2 pm, given the time I lost on Pharaoh Creek and the shorter daylight. Snow above Shadow Lake consisted of a thin sun and wind crust over a 20 cm layer, itself laying on a sugary soft layer almost reaching the ground. No sign of the lynx. On the return from the Re-6 campground, what was a nice trackset trail in the morning had been chewed up by hikers. As if the trail was not wide enough for those brainless. Lots of ski-doo traffic all day along RECk, hauling supplies to the lodge for the start of their winter season.

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68 Alf Skrastins January 29, 2017 at 10:41 pm

Taylor Lk-Panorama Ridge, Jan 29, 2017
I like to get up to Taylor Lake and the basin below Panorama Ridge every season, and today was the day. The trail was well packed by snowshoers, snowploughers and even walkers, but it was still soft enough that I could tour all the way up to the ridge on my no-wax backcountry skis, without needing to use skins. In the larch meadows of the upper basin, the snow was just supportive enough to allow for off-trail touring and turns. We just skied in the lovely larch glades and stayed away from any avalanche terrain. The ski down the creek and Taylor Lake trail was fast and smooth.

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69 Alf Skrastins January 27, 2017 at 11:01 pm

Chickadee Valley, Jan 27, 2017
I did a tour up Chickadee Valley today. One positive aspect of the cold periods that we’ve had this winter, is that it has frozen most of the creek forms the basis for the ski route up the valley. There are still a number of open spots, but far fewer than normal for this time of year. The snowpack is thinner than usual, but there is a well packed trail all the way in. The snowpack is not quite strong enough for reliable off-track travel for the first kilometre, but after that, it is supportive enough to go anywhere… as long as you have wide skis.
A number of groups were skiing on avalanche slopes along the north side of the valley. The more open basin at the far end of the valley was quite windy and a sizeable avalanche had come down right to the trees from the slope on the south side of the basin.

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70 Doug January 31, 2017 at 1:42 pm

Alf, thanks for this report. Did you do this trip on xc skis or wider downhill/touring setup?

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71 Alf Skrastins February 1, 2017 at 1:03 am

I did it on wider, wax-less backcountry skis, without using skins. You could do it with XC touring skis, but you’d have to stick to the packed trail.

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72 Chuck January 25, 2017 at 8:41 pm

BAKER CREEK – Jan 25

Today we broke trail following a single wolf track 6 kms up Baker Creek. After that, the moose tracks took over:
https://1drv.ms/a/s!AhVZXBE7vMV7g22C9oh_wcpMfU1g
The conditions for light touring in the backcountry are excellent at the moment, partly because the snow is not very deep but also because there is no sun crust yet.

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73 Pete January 22, 2017 at 4:50 pm

Skied with a friend into Elk lakes provincial park today. Cold start from Elk pass parking of -17c. Took the trail past the couch to join up with the power line further on. Passed a large group coming out of elk cabin along the way. Beautiful sunny day. Stayed on the packed trail to avoid wallowing in the sugar. Continued past the cabin to the lower lake then to the shore of upper Elk lake for a quick bite. The post 2013 flood reroute to the upper lake is a nice bit of trail building including new bridges. Then back the way we came. Stopped at the couch briefly to sign the book and reapply duct tape then back to the car by 3.

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74 GordFerguson January 16, 2017 at 6:17 pm

Taylor Lake-Panorama Ridge. -12º
We went looking for some backcountry turns around Taylor Lake on Monday. It’s a long slog in there on the well-packed luge track up to the lake. Above the lake the climb track was well established and it looked like there was plenty of untouched lines to be had. The snowpack is about 1 metre with 30 cm loose powder on a very weak, and very thin crust layer. Under that was unconsolidated facets. We hoped to ski some of the open slopes but with the snowpack this weak, we elected to ski in the trees. The ski pen is 40+cm with every turn collapsing into the facet layer. We managed to link a few turns in the tight trees then headed out. The luge track down is a quad burner for sure.

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75 Alf Skrastins January 14, 2017 at 10:14 pm

With sunny skies and warmer temperatures in the forecast, I thought I would check out some backcountry skiing. We drove all the way out to Chickadee Valley, but the car thermometer kept dropping, as we headed west of Banff. At the BC border, the temperature was -23C, so we just turned around and headed for the Spray Valley. It was -16 at Rummel Creek, but quickly warmed to -7C, as we headed up the Mt. Engadine burn. Snow conditions were pretty horrible. It’s a weak, shallow snowpack. Not great for trail breaking and not good for turns.
Looks like I’ll continue enjoying great conditions on the XC trails for a while longer.

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76 GMJ January 11, 2017 at 9:17 pm

Powderface Creek-Jan 11
I finally made it out skiing! A great tour up Powderface Creek to Three Trail Pass today. The last major snowfall has been packed down by snowshoers with an extra 5 cm of untouched powder on top, which made for mostly excellent skiing. There are a few rocks lurking under the snow on the steeper portions toward the head of the valley. We opted to remove our skis for a few portions on the way up and more on the way down. From the pass we went up right onto North Powderface for a short distance. The snowpack isn’t very supportive in the open terrain treeline, but there’s at least 30 cms of it, with deeper slab in wind pockets. Below treeline, the snowpack is variable, but overall it’s not bad and certainly enough for a good ski.
A gorgeous day of bright sun, blue skies, calm wind, and cold but not bitter temperatures. Get out there while the snow is still good.

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77 MaSid December 31, 2016 at 5:13 pm

A friend was at black prince a few days ago and reported very touchy conditions, as per the forecasts. He refered to his column test results as a single finger tap. Upper slab released and the rest just collapsed. Digging a pit may even be problematic. Good thing the cross country is decent.

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78 Gord Ferguson December 31, 2016 at 5:06 pm

Burstall Pass, Friday Dec 30. Plenty of fresh snow up at Burstall Pass. The trail in is well packed by skiers, snowshoers and even a few walkers who were having a bit of a rough time. The headwall is in good condition for climbing and relatively easy to ski down. The snowpack above the headwall is getting really deep, well over a metre total with 30-40cm fresh light powder on top to plough through. We only skied low-angled slopes but found the base generally supportive.

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79 Chip Scialfa December 28, 2016 at 5:55 am

After a wonderful ski on the 26th at PLPP, I headed out with 8 other Ramblers for what was advertised as a day of yo-yo runs at Gypsum Mines glades in K Country. Unfortunately, a very thin and weak snowpack turned our day into a “tour” up and down the fire road. There was no base to the snow and hazards galore so the group decision was to minimize the risk of injury and frustration and just head back down after a 3.5 hr climb. Not quite what we expected, but an enjoyable outing nonetheless and a good chance for Cathy and Leslie to test out their new AT boots, which in both cases need some “work” if blisters are to be avoided in future. The backcountry can be enjoyable, but you gotta get the gear right!

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80 Gord Ferguson December 29, 2016 at 6:24 pm

If the base is that poor at Gypsum mines I wonder what it’s like at Black Prince? Anyone skied there lately?

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81 David P December 23, 2016 at 8:05 am

10 adults and 7 kids headed in to Elizabeth Parker hut at Lake O’Hara on the 20th, coming out on the 22nd. There’s no shortage of snow at any point on the trail, just a few ice flows across the road for a few hundred metres after crossing the big creek bed (~6km?). Although there is no grooming yet, the trail is well packed down for the full width of the road. The adults in the group were on thin backcountry (NNN-BC) type gear but, without packs, regular cross-country skis would have worked nicely for a day trip into the lake.

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82 Jeff December 22, 2016 at 7:38 pm

My sister and I went to Chester Lake. Late start didn’t get there till 12:30. Cloudy with some light snow. Perfect temperature, around -3C. Used skins but on the way down I put on some VR40 for the flats and slight uphill and it worked fine. Trail was in good shape with nice soft packed snow. Off trail it was bottomless with faceted snow. Lots of snowshoers and some hikers. We were on Tele and AT gear. No moose in the parking lot.

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83 Chip Scialfa December 22, 2016 at 6:35 pm

Black Prince/Warspite Glades
December 22

Nice skiing just west of Black Prince Tarns today. Despite very blustery conditions on the HWY 1 leading to the HWY 40 turn-off, there was hardly a breeze in the area. We had about 10 cm of fresh stuff on top of wind-affected snow. No signs of slides in the area. Light snow falling as we left. Temperature was -2 at the parking lot and about -5 at mid-day. Nice runs, though a bit trashed up under the new accumulation.

We did four runs before deciding to call it a day. Nice!

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84 Chip Scialfa December 17, 2016 at 5:24 pm

Rummel Lake
Dec. 17, 2016

A beautiful, but VERY chilly day up to Rummel Lake today. We started up the trail at 10 a.m. after rescuing a couple of tourists who had landed their rental vehicle in a snowy ditch. (Winter Tip: Put some old blankets in your car. If your wheels are spinning, get the blankets under the tires. That will give enough traction to get out…sometimes. Leslie Johnson deserves credit for this inspired rescue). Despite the exertion this required, we were still cold, cold, cold. The sun was shining brightly, but always touched ground well off the trail. As we got deeper into the trees, the chill deepened and Mel, all 100 lbs of her, could not get warm feet the entire day. Thank goodness there was no wind. We had a quick lunch at the Lake and skied out on a narrow, thinly covered trail. Still, no wipeouts. There had been some slides on the slopes east of the Lake but nothing major.

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85 Steve Riggs December 4, 2016 at 8:24 pm

Chester Lake- Sunday afternoon.
We set out a bit before noon with about 15 cm new in the parking lot, which had increased the snowpack at that elevation to near 40 cm. Coverage is generally excellent on the trail, other than 2 minor rocks or roots at one corner of the twisty forested portion. Above Chester Lake, we wandered around the larch glades in the vicinity of the Elephant Rocks, finding well over 20 cm of storm snow, and a supportive 80-90 cm snowpack that made for easy travel and nice low angled turns. Moderate northerly wind gusts at the edge of treeline made me think that soft slabs will be forming in the alpine, and we heard but did not see, what sounded like a fairly large sluff off Mt Chester as we sipped tea at the rocks. The ski back down to the trailhead was smooth and easy in all that fresh snow, and refreshingly free of snowshoers to dodge, thanks possibly to what looked to me like a better positioned sign at the snowshoe trail junction, just up from the parking lot. A new addition?
It snowed pretty much all afternoon, leaving an extra 5 cm on the truck roof snow plot at 3pm.

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86 MaSid December 3, 2016 at 4:12 pm

Sat dec 3: sunshine meadows
Skinned up the ski out again for a tour beyond the resort. Had some staff attempt to accuse me of pilfering. It’s was a short conversation. Still not worth skiing below goats eye, as of this afternoon. Maybe after tomorrow’s snow? About 6 inches of fresh up high and only about an inch or less down in the lot on return. Sun in the morning, snowing fairly heavily in the afternoon. Windy and cold but snow skied well, not pressed yet where I skied (south facing stuff near rock isle). Some new wind crust just below the surface in some areas of meadow, but otherwise ankle to mid boot ski pens. Felt like a new sun or wind crust down about 15-20 cm on the south slope I skied. Decent enough turns for a couple of runs. Trees sure look Christmas like in that area. Busy day at the resort, cars quite a way down the road. Roads were good today.

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87 Steve Riggs November 27, 2016 at 9:26 pm

Sunday at Arethusa Cirque.
Leaving the roadside, we found a 30 cm snowpack, making for reasonable, but not complete coverage on the trail up to the meadows. At treeline, the depth averaged 40-50 cm and was very supportive below the 15-20 of light recent storm snow. As usual there were some thinner spots, and moderate wind affect in the alpine.
Our favourite ski line had been scooped by Saturday’s skiers, but we found some very enjoyable turns in easy angled larch glades, that were well worth repeating.
Exiting down the unofficial hiking trail was not all that bad- the scattered barely covered roots and rocks were easily avoided by taking it slow. I’ve seen it worse, including the lower headwall at Burstall last weekend. Light snow was falling at 3 as we packed up, but I don’t think it will amount to much.
Pictures here:
https://steveriggs.smugmug.com/ArethusaSkiing2016

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88 Peter Rowlands November 27, 2016 at 5:53 am

Robertson Glacier – Nov. 26
Great ski up to below the toe of the Robertson Glacier. 10cm new snow along the Smith Dorrien Hwy made for a quick, pleasant ski; used Blue (-3C to -8C) on skinny metal-edged skis which made for fast travel. Good coverage on the trail. A bit thin/hardpacked on the one short narrow section of trail dropping down to the flats below the Burstall Pass headwall, but it is over quickly. No sign of any tracks bypassing this section along the lakes; a few sections of open water may be deterring potential tracksetters?
60cm settled snow below the toe of the glacier. Relatively calm in the valley but the wind was howling higher up with much snow being moved around; no signs of recent avalanche activity but things could be twitchy on lee slopes.
Thanks to all the snowshoeists who did a great job of keeping off the ski track; all we need to do now is train the resident moose to do the same.

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89 Gord Ferguson November 27, 2016 at 4:23 pm

We followed your tracks up to the toe of the glacier today (Sunday) on xc skis. Very pleasant day, great conditions. On our return we decided to try to ski in the open meadow to avoid the narrow, thin, rocky bit and managed to find a good route through. There was one spot that was a bit sporty where we had to cross a small stream on collapsing snow, but we managed it.

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90 Gord Ferguson November 25, 2016 at 7:06 pm

Burstall Friday Nov 25. Back up to Burstall Pass a week later. Stormy, steady snowfall all day. Dug pit on small slope just below treeline at 2370m. East aspect 25º, lee, wind loaded. HS110 SS50 CTH24 SP. Higher up at treeline we observed cornice failures, (skier triggered) on small features below rock ridges. One had a 35cm crown and ran about 20m. Anything above 30º will be very touchy right now as last weeks storm snow has slabbed up.
Last week the snow in the meadow above the headwall was 62 cm, today 91 cm.

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91 Henry November 26, 2016 at 7:56 am

And BSP was low to moderate-high?

(Bob Sighting Probability) -)

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92 Gord Ferguson November 26, 2016 at 8:15 am

No Bob sightings just 3 young guys on their splitboards. I was surprised there were so few people out. On our return we hoped for a fast exit on a packed trail but instead had to double pole through 10cm that fell during the day.

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93 Diana Piggott November 26, 2016 at 9:52 am

Oh! Well, 10cm of fresh sounds pretty sweet to me, unless it was wet and heavy?

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94 Peter Rowlands November 22, 2016 at 9:29 pm

Nov 22 – Highwood Pass
6″ of settled snow at the parking lot. Thin, marginal conditions in the trees heading for the upper bowls below Grizzly Col and Pocaterra Ridge; many roots, rocks, icy patches; not a lot of fun. Numerous craters from hikers postholing along the uptrack. Upper slopes windblasted, shallow snowpack. A few folks were getting a few turns in on open slopes that had collected some snow, but conditions are well below average compared to previous years. With no significant snow in the forecast before the highway closes Dec. 1st, probably better off heading up the Smith-Dorrien or BJ Highway in the search for better early season conditions.

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95 MaSid November 22, 2016 at 3:55 pm

Tue nov 22: sunshine meadows
Ski out is skinable from the start, barely. But not worth descending below goats eye. About 70 cm in meadow. 10 cm ski pen off track. Not wind affected in open areas yet. Didn’t go into alpine. Cloudy and light winds most of the day.

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96 Alf Skrastins November 19, 2016 at 8:33 pm

Chester Lake, Nov 19
Todays destination was Chester Lake, a once popular ski destination in the former Chester/Sawmill XC ski trail system. The start of the ski trail and separate snowshoe trails were re-routed in 2015, but the signage for the trails is really poor. About 50m up the ski trail is a sign pointing to an unnamed snowshoe trail, somewhere off the edge of the ski trail. I know it’s supposed to be the Chester Lake snowshoe trail, but not a single snowshoer has been able to figure that out. The only use that anyone has found for the sign, was as a convenient place to hang a bag full of dog poop. So, every snowshoer, hiker and their dog just trudges up the XC ski trail. Perhaps, that’s understandable, since the next several signs show that this is an XC ski and hiking trail. The next confusing sign is the one-way only sign that points to the right… reinforced by the “Do Not Enter” sign pointing left. The only problem is that the left branch is part of the High Rockies Trail, heading to Rummel Lake. So, the only way that hikers, fat-bikers and snowshoers can get to that portion of the High Rockies Trail, is to up the “Do Not Enter” downhill half of the XC ski trail. Not at all well thought out!
I eventually took the original Chester Lake trail route over to the Chester Snowshoe Trail and skied up it. This was lovely, since not a single snowshoer has been up that way. I figured that since snowshoers like to walk on ski trails, I could lure them over to the snowshoe trail by putting in a set of ski tracks for them to follow.
The touring conditions are quite good at Chester, for mid-November. The snowpack at the lake is 58cm… 17cm of fluffy powder, sitting on a very firm 41cm base.
https://goo.gl/photos/7xiDV2r76T3XbPPd7

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97 Gord Ferguson November 18, 2016 at 6:23 pm

Burstall Pass Friday Nov 18.
I was pleasantly surprised to find 10 cm of new snow on top of a good base at the Burstall parking lot. Trail is in good condition all the way to the headwall. I skinned up the headwall and dug a pit in the meadow above. HS 62cm, 19cm on top of a 43 cm base, (the base is amazingly supportive). I set a track up to the top where the fresh champagne powder was 25 cm. Travelling solo, I didn’t ski anything steep but the gentler slopes were skiing very well. No rocks encountered. Had to remove skis for ½ of the headwall descent, but that’s normal for November. Sunny, cold, beautiful day. Wow.
Hope this photo link works.
https://goo.gl/photos/Fxf94Vj7vf4TDWbJ6

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98 Alf Skrastins November 18, 2016 at 10:46 pm

Burstall Pass, Nov 18
Well, it looks like everyone at Burstall Pass today was a SkierBob regular! I was up at Burstall Pass too. Very good conditions between the parking lot and Upper Burstall Lake and excellent conditions above the headwall. The Burstall Headwall trail has got to be the most poorly routed and badly constructed trail in Kananaskis Country! It’s not nice for hiking, but it is awful for skiing, especially early in the season. However, the reward for getting up and down it is worth the effort!
https://goo.gl/photos/ndzj2b97w782P3DfA

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99 Jim From Canmore November 18, 2016 at 6:14 pm

I did a short shake-down tour today with my new back country? light-touring? XC gear and the conditions at Burstall Pass trail are great. Not a lot of snow but no bare spots and nice skiing. Oakley the border collie passed me and had been to the pass and said his humans encountered great snow conditions all the way up but nothing too deep. Avy risk is low currently.

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100 Gord Ferguson November 18, 2016 at 6:26 pm

Saw you guys on my way down. So you didn’t boot up above the headwall?

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101 Chuck November 18, 2016 at 5:07 pm

SUNSHINE – Nov 18

Had planned to check out Healy Pass, but decided that the snow was too thin, so headed up to Sunshine under the lift.
Was passed quickly by the Spanish Randonee Team who had the same idea!
Nice to have another choice for those looking to try something else with this nice cold snow:
https://1drv.ms/a/s!AhVZXBE7vMV7gS–nIZZ8bSLPe32
While checking out my own stash in the Wawa out-of-bounds, I must have interrupted the proceedings at the local Stoke Central!

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102 Anna Elkins November 18, 2016 at 4:55 pm

Lake Annette – Paradise Valley

With the recent snowfall we set out this morning to check out Paradise Valley. And paradise it was! We followed the summer trail from the PV parking lot after skinning up MLR. Snow was a little thin for the first km from here with several large rocks but easily avoidable. The snow soon turned powdery and soft. There were old ski tracks from before the last snowfall so travelling was easy going. We were amazed to follow a single elk track the entire was up to Lake Annette, and even more amazed to follow them past the lake and far into the alpine, crossing moraines and avalanche paths. Got in some very nice turns above the lake. There was about 6 cm of powder overtop the crust from last weeks warm spell. It was -8 when we left the van and most likely colder in the shadowed valley. Feels like winter is back! 🙂

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103 Alf Skrastins November 17, 2016 at 9:39 pm

I skied the portion of the High Rockies Trail between the Chester Lake and Rummel Lake trails today. This segment was clearly designed as a mountain bike trail, with endless unnecessary ups and downs and lefts and rights. The tread is too narrow for snowplowing or herringboning, but the ups and downs are all short. It’s a bit like the narrow Fox Creek trail on a side-hill. Snow depth at Chester Trailhead was 22cm. In open areas at about 2100m the snow was up to 40cm deep, but under the boughs of big spruce and fir, there was only about 10-15cm. Fortunately, I had rock skis. It’s good for snowshoeing now and will better for ski touring with a bit more snow.
https://goo.gl/photos/bCXKJ6Pdjtfcpmvr7

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104 Alf Skrastins November 8, 2016 at 6:28 pm

Yes, there is no problem walking/skiing up the Sunshine Ski-Out, and then touring through the ski area to the Sunshine Meadows, Citadel Pass, Rock Isle Lake, Twin Cairns, Wawa Ridge, Simpson Pass. Just ski off to the side of the ski-out and ski runs, since other skiers will be going downhill.

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105 Gord October 31, 2016 at 5:25 pm

Thanks for the tip Alf and Steve. I had planned a Burstall Pass tour for my first ski trip this year but opted for climbing up to Sunshine instead. Good change of plan I’m thinking. I hiked up the Sunshine Creek trail for just 20 minutes then donned my skins. Had to remove my skis a couple of times to cross the creek here and there but generally it was pretty good. I skied up the trail behind Goat’s Eye Station then set a climb track up Trapper and skied it numerous times. Great base with 15 cm of light fresh on top. Not bad for a short day out.

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106 Alf Skrastins November 1, 2016 at 11:33 pm

Sunshine Village Ski Resort will open for the season on November 3. That’s their earliest opening in 30 years. Only the Wolverine, Jackrabbit, Strawberry and Wawa lifts will be operating on opening day.

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107 Henry November 2, 2016 at 7:10 am

Oh boy. Just in time for the puddle jumping contest on Saturday when it gets to 18 degrees in Canmore -)

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108 Steve Riggs October 30, 2016 at 10:20 am

I would add to Alf’s comments. Many areas had already been extensively machine packed (not groomed, yet) and the Sunshine employee that we talked to was coy about a possible earlier than planned opening date. Get it while you can!
And bring your rock skis- I hit no rocks at all while making turns, but you will want them in order to maximize the ski/walk ratio, on the exit beside the road below Goats Eye station.

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109 Alf Skrastins October 29, 2016 at 9:33 pm

It was hard to ignore the snow images on the Sunshine Village webcam, so I went up there to ski for myself. There was no snow at the parking lot, so we started off by hiking up the ski-out/road. After the first corner, there was just enough snow along the edge of the road for skiing, so I started skiing. Marginal skiing is still better than boring hiking. By the time we reached the Goats Eye Gondola station, there was plenty of snow coverage everywhere, with a settled base of about 40cm. We did a run on the Wolverine hill, then toured right to the top of Lookout Mountain. At the higher elevations, the snowpack was in the 60-70cm range, with a firm base and 15-20cm of powder on top. No wind, bands of clouds and a view that stretched from Mt. Assiniboine to Mt. Bourgeau and the Healy Pass area. By the end of the day we’d had 1240m elevation of excellent skiing. I think that’s a pretty good way to start the season!
https://goo.gl/photos/6nvMSBBoQsVPmAWC7

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110 Chuck October 30, 2016 at 8:37 am

Congratulations Alf.
Suspected you’d be first in the backcountry, but then again, you never really quit!

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111 Terri November 8, 2016 at 3:29 pm

Alf,
So for a first timer- I can take my touring skis up the ski-out at Sunshine and then tour around where I want as long as I don’t use the lifts?

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