Another big snow and good-bye pine needles

From Nipika Mountain Resort on Facebook: Rufus is going to be buried if this snow keeps up! This is just what we need!

From Nipika Mountain Resort on Facebook: “Rufus is going to be buried if this snow keeps up! This is just what we need!”

My snow gauge shows 10 cm in Canmore, and I believe Banff received about the same. Bill from Wilson’s in Lake Louise reports 15 cm at noon and it was still snowing. The PLPP Visitor Centre had 15 cm at 3 pm with more on the way. Good-bye pine needles.

Trail crews will be busy grooming before the weekend and we should have some excellent conditions, with tolerable temperatures and hopefully no strong winds. I see Jeff has started work on the Kananaskis village trails with the Bill Milne trail being trackset today. Paul Karchut from the CBC’s Real Ski Report was digging around for information on whether the PLPP snowcat has been repaired, so listen tomorrow morning at 7:40 a.m. and he might have the latest.

Clive reported 20 cm at West Bragg creek. I expect it will get trackset and should be busy this weekend as will the two golf courses in Calgary.

As you can see in the photo, Nipika is also getting the snow they need.

God4Who really is the God of Ski Trails?

I’ve received some flattering emails in the past few days.  Being the vain person that I am, I never get tired of reading notes like this:

  • Thank you so much for being the absolutely best at updating on the conditions in the Bow Valley. Nobody even comes close to doing such an excellent job as you.Dasha Gaiazova
  • I read it almost daily, and it is one of the most helpful sites I’ve ever come across. THANK YOU SO MUCH – because of you, I now spend the whole work week day dreaming about getting out on the trails again the following weekend, and can rejoice every time the snow falls and stave off the winter blues 🙂 -Cheryl Butcher
  • Most of us think you are the God of Ski Trails – Barb

Your humble servant is flattered and gratified by all that praise, and thank you. Now let’s give some credit to the others who deserve it. I would consider myself a relative newcomer to the cross-country skiing scene around here. I’d like to hear from my readers about “builders” of this activity. Who do you know that has contributed to xc skiing and should get some acknowledgement for their endeavors?

Don Gardner

Don Gardner

I have two names that I can think of immediately. Don Gardner, the man who designed and built a good percentage of the trails we talk about on this blog. The other is Alasdair Fergusson of the Calgary Ski Club. You’ve heard his name as the tracksetter of Shaganappi golf course, but he has been a determined proponent of xc skiing for many years and has spearheaded a lot of the upgrades on the Lake Louise trails. He’s also been the person behind the big ski sale at Max Bell every fall, and the Lake Louise loppet.

Who can you think of?

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  1. Henry Leparskas sent this email:

    For me the obvious person is Alf Skrastins.

    I met Alf when I stumbled apon the Wilderness Resource Centre, an information and gathering place that he started up in a small room down in the basement of McEwan Hall at U of C.

    He went of from there to found the Calgary Outdoor Centre and turned it into a multi-million dollar venture.

    Others will be better able to fill in the details, but Alf has spent his life being heavily active in mountain trails planning and conservation.

    My guess is that Alf has introduced thousands like myself to the sport of skiing, whether it be nordic or back-country by leading groups into the mountains for the past 35 years.

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