After spending the last three days in Calgary, I returned to Canmore in a snowstorm late this afternoon. My driveway already has about 8 cm of heavy, wet snow, the kind that’ll break tree branches off. The temperature is -1, but at least there’s very little wind. I’m not sure if the Nordic Centre groomers will be able to work with this snow…probably if it cools down tonight. Check early tomorrow morning to see if the Pisten-Bullys are out on the trails.
Amazing day at PLPP today. Left Calgary in full sunshine and chinook winds, turned onto highway 40 seeing a couple of flakes, and by the time we passed the Nakiska turn-off the snow was pounding down. It didn’t stop all day, and the whole area got it. The snow today was really sticky – the kids with waxless skis (freshly base-waxed) had a great time, while we struggled with snow balls under ours. One things cool off a little it will be amazing, although the track setting is buried.
West Bragg Creek
Cindy H sent in this comment on the previous thread…
Skied at West Bragg Creek today and it was a true lesson in not giving up! We had ambitions to ski Telephone Loop and after being hopeful with purple wax, the start was pretty grim. There was a lot of debris on the trail including chunks of bark (not the dog kind LOL!) I thought we’d encounter less debris on the Mountain Road but knowing that it would be even warmer we slathered on some red (I don’t own klister and never will) and attempted to ski West against the hurricane force gusts. I came to a stop, having been disappointed in not getting up earlier, not heading out to Lake Louise or PLPP and turned around – planning to console myself with a latte in Bragg Creek.
I then thought, “no way”. Yes, I knew the temps were better in Lake Louise for the day, but I had also wanted to sleep in and having commitments in the evening, West Bragg was the best option.
Realizing that I hadn’t exhausted all options, I suggested we head onto the south side trails that were E-W where I was hoping they would be less sun affected.
There sure was a lot of debris on the trail (the tracks were filled in looking like rail lines with needles in some places) but the red wax was sticking and we were off skiing!
Wanting to avoid the ice flows/water of the lower parts of Crystal Line, we went out and back along the south leg and then started heading south along the Sundog Loop. At the top we found some skier set tracks heading off on Loggers Loop and it looked great. After skiing 30 m into sun affected snow and not getting any traction, I once again turned around, opting to continue south on the Sundog Loop to the Elbow Springs junction where I decided we would turn around and have a fast ski back to the parking lot.
When arriving back at the Loggers Loop junction, I thought I had given up too soon before, so I turned off onto it much to the delight of my friend who prefers skiing off track.
What a wonderful trail! We followed it around, down through the drainage and then up along the cutblocks to the point were you could overlook the area North towards the mountain road. Not being familiar with the trail and realizing that people along the Mountain Road had reported it in poor shape, we decided to turn back and ski back to Sun Dog where we had a fun ride down the west side of the loop back to the parking lot.
We came across a more “senior” couple in front of us and watched with our mouths open as we saw a series of short radius tele turns down the hard packed trail just before the bridge. Inspiring!
Of course, lots of people were out…skiers, quite a few walkers who had obviously given up (most had stayed out of the tracks – thank you!), friendly puppies, people with wobbly legs screaming down the hills (and bailing much to our entertainment ALL having big smiles on their faces and no signs of giving up).
And so, more than one valuable lesson was learned today…there are always options (the last one being to go for a walk along the Mountain Road), and maybe pack a pair of snowshoes as a back-up (although today proved we didn’t need them)…why walk when you can glide?… 🙂
If anyone skied the Birkie today, I’d be interested in a report. I was reading on their website that it was very warm and a lot of skiers were using klister.