-The second track has been obliterated by snowmobile traffic. It’s easy to see the “washboard” in the multi-use lane.-
Brewster Creek ski trail should be maintained for the safety and enjoyment of the taxpaying public who pay for Banff National park. It appears from all the evidence that it is being “maintained” for the convenience of the lodge at the end of the trail.
Brewster Creek may have been in good shape for skiing for a day or two immediately after tracksetting, but the snowmobiles going back and forth to Sundance Lodge are destroying it.
There’s plenty of snow to work with, but it’s amazing how unsafe and unpleasant the trail can become when it is neglected. It’s now known as Brewster Freak.
The corners on some of the fast downhills have huge ridges. When snowplowing in the multi-use lane, you have the “washboard effect” from the ridges left by the snowmobile tracks. Today they were soft because they were just created, but after they get hard, it’s a death-defying act to snowplow over them.
The snowmobiles have wiped out the second track on a significant portion of the trail. A snowmobile left a huge hole in the middle of the trail at one point. It would have taken one minute of shoveling to fill it in.
Ascending the trail is quite pleasant, even with only one track(and no track at all) for some of the distance.
The first 2.6k on Brewster creek has a net elevation gain of 170 metres, so let the climbing begin.
I went as far as the viewpoint at 8.8K and turned around. Descending the 2.6K of steep downhill is white-knuckle most of the way.
Air and snow temperature were both -7°C. The snow was a bit on the sugary side so I used VR45(-2/-8). To get to Brewster Creek you first have to ski on Healy Creek for 2.6K. Alternatively, you can start at the Cave and Basin but it’s 5.2K from that end.
Healy Creek was in reasonably nice shape, just a few wayward pine needles. I did not see any rocks. Of course, it’s best to walk the first 150 metres because of all the crud thrown onto the trail by snowplows where the trail is adjacent to the Sunshine road.
The Ribbon Creek Live Grooming Report indicates that Bill Milne, Evan-Thomas, and Wedge Connector were groomed today.
The temperatures are staying cool for the near future and there’s even some snow in the forecast. Things are working out reasonably well this winter. Every time we’ve had a meltdown, it snows and turns colder and the trails are rejuvenated.