The best options for weekend skiing

Andrewon Moraine Lake road. Photo by Rhonda W

Andrew on Moraine Lake road. Photo by Rhonda W

Thanks for the Trip Reports today. They’re more important than ever right now.

The recent warm weather, combined with rain and wind has put a monkey wrench into our previously perfect winter. Fortunately, we still have some pretty good choices for cross-country skiing this weekend. Unfortunately, it means driving a little further than we had become accustomed to.

From the sounds of Scott’s Trip Report, there may be lots of parking available at West Bragg Creek:

“West Bragg is all ice, most unskiable conditions i have seen in ages. Saved the day by hiking on mtn road and let the kids zoom down the hills on the ice!”

If that doesn’t scare you off, try this from the West Bragg Groomers themselves:

“Well, it was bound to happen sooner or later. The recent chinook has taken its toll on the West Bragg Creek trails and it’s not pretty. Just about all trails are icy as heck, and in the trees it’s a cocktail of needles and cones – unless you are something of a masochist, we’d suggest you go swimming or something.”

Lake Louise escaped the worst of the bad weather and the fresh snow has already been groomed on Moraine Lake road and the Great Divide. Chateau tracksetter Jeff Douglas groomed a number of trails and will finish the job in the morning by tracksetting Fairview and Upper Tramline. We received two positive reports on the Pipestone trails.

Click for larger image

Click for larger image

PLPP, as reported by Rene, received some snow which should mitigate the worst of the icy, debris-covered mess which was reported a couple days ago. I expect some grooming will occur tonight.

Thanks to Jody’s tracksetting and later, skiing, we know Mt Shark is in decent shape.

I expect Lake O’Hara fire road will be in good shape. It was trackset on Thursday, but most likely has some fresh snow on top.

I was going to surmise that none of the Banff trails would be very skiable, and Susanne’s Cascade adventure has pretty much confirmed that.

Ribbon creek trails are out of the question for this weekend according to the Kananaskis trail report:

“Warm temperatures combined with little new snow has most lower trails in an icy hard condition. Grooming will not return in this area until early next week once the temperatures move below zero. Skiing will not be recommended this weekend.”

Dylan reports lots of debris on the Canmore Nordic Centre’s trails even after today’s grooming, but we’re supposed to get a bit of snow overnight and tomorrow which might help.

Environment Canada is calling for 2-4 cm in Banff tomorrow. The Snow Forecast is predicting 7 cm for PLPP.

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  1. Last year when I bought s fat-bike, winter ended within three weeks. Should’ve known all the snow would melt or turn to ice right after I bought skis.

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