I started climbing Whiskey Jack on perfect new tracksetting at 11:15 a.m. The air temperature at Boulton Creek was -2°C and the snow was -6. I feel like I’ve been given a new life since that cortisone shot.
The first people I met, Erika, Paul, and Vitaly, were taking advantage of the good conditions and skiing 42K today. They already had 13K under their belt when I took their picture about 100 metres up the trail.
Any “cookie racers” will recognize 42K as the course for the Kananaskis Ski Marathon which will be held on Feb 24. I should remind all loppeteers that you only have four more days to register for the Nipika Loppet which is on Jan 27, 28.
All the steep hills on Whiskey Jack were in good shape after last night’s grooming. No more of the icy conditions which we heard about on yesterday’s trip reports.
As I was climbing, I was surprised to meet only two skiers descending. This told me I was out too early!
At the top of Whiskey Jack, I turned right and headed for Tyrwhitt. There’s about 10 cm of new snow on Tyrwhitt so the tracks were a little soft but it was beautiful as usual with the blue sky and bright sun.
Update: The downed tree on Tyrwhitt was cleared on Sunday afternoon. Ignore the next paragraph.
There’s a fallen tree on Tyrwhitt 600 metres south of the Lookout -Pocaterra – Tyrwhitt junction but it’s easy enough to get over if you remove your skis.
I met a few skiers on Tyrwhitt, but when I didn’t see anyone sitting at the Tyrwhitt picnic table, I knew for sure I was too early for the lunch crowd.
Everyone seemed to be congregating at the Elk Pass junction. That’s where I gave away 10 Swix waxes.
I met at least 50 skiers coming up Elk Pass as I was heading down.
Descending Elk Pass was perfect. The steep hill was safe, fast and fun. The downhill to the Fox Creek junction was wonderful on the new tracks. None of the corners had been washed out, so I was able to stay in the tracks all the way. It’s so enjoyable, it makes you want to climb back up and do it again.
Fox Creek was about as pleasant and fun as it gets. Clean snow, good tracks, and double-poling all the way to Moraine junction. Moraine was in excellent shape as well.
I didn’t read Barb Banff’s report about the Lynx tracks on Tyrwhitt before I left home so I wasn’t watching for tracks as diligently as I could have been. I took one photo of animal tracks running parallel to the ski trail which I will post below.
We heard from HeatherD about Kicking Horse river and Tally-Ho being in good shape. I’ve also had an update from the Kicking Horse Ski Club saying the conditions on the Emerald Connector are improving. The Connector reminds me a lot of Fox Creek but it’s much longer(6K).
I received an email from Rick saying the trails have been trackset around Castle Mountain Chalets and from Castle Junction to Castle Lookout.
Redearth Creek was trackset today.