It’s been 15 years since I skied the Telephone loop at West Bragg Creek and I only had a few vague memories of what to expect. What I know for sure is that today’s snow and trail conditions were much better than what I had on Feb 28, 2003.
After reading all the trip reports of the good conditions on Telephone, it was time to go back and check it out one more time. At the end of the loop, instead of going straight back to the trailhead, I also added Moose loop to the day’s activities.
The temperature was -10°C and VR40(-4/-12) performed well all day. The snow is not abrasive so I still had good grip at the end of the trip.
Good snow conditions can make a difficult trail very forgiving and that’s how it was today. That being said, this is not a trail for novice skiers.
The trail gains about 90 metres of net elevation on the first 3.5K, then loses it all over the next kilometre with many roller-coaster hills and sharp turns.
The trail is very pretty at the extreme north end for a couple kilometres where it is not shrouded in thick forest. As it turns south, the climbing starts all over again to a net elevation gain of 150 metres. Overall, my GPS had a total ascent of 400 metres, so there’s lots of up and down.
The final 2.4K is a very pleasant downhill which meanders through forest and some clearings. The only scary thing is the barbed wire fence which rears its ugly head at the end of a downhill. As we read on Kinga’s trip report a few days ago, it’s in a dangerous place.
Moose loop was in terrific shape and very enjoyable.
Telephone Loop fence
Bragg Creek Groomer David sent me an update about the barbed wire fence on West Telephone. They have covered the barbed wire with a protective layer of foam tubing and then added two layers of snow fencing in front of that. So… that fence line is no longer a hazard to skiers.
I skied past the fence yesterday and it’s much better. The snowfencing is dayglow orange and impossible to miss at night or in poor visibility.
WBC – Telephone Loop
It was -25C this morning as I started skiing counterclockwise Telephone loop. As in yesterday’s post from Bob, conditions were excellent and the trail was covered with a squiff of new snow. I was alone the entire time and met many deers, with the sun warming up the snow, the snow started to fall from trees and it was quite magical. Two hours later when arriving at the car it was a balmy -11C. Another fine morning.
This trail was on my bucket to do list and I have done it three times already, it is so much fun. It is like a roller coaster in Disney’s park if you have enough speed you can go from peak to peak without polling. You can do East Telephone in the summer time but the mud and cow’s dung spoils the fun. I have done the trail in both directions and counter clockwise is much better in my opinion. The only annoyance is the twigs and encroaching bushes on the west side tripping the poles plants. I might do some pruning next time I go.
WBC Telephone Loop
Sounds like we were on the same program today, Bob. Too bad I didn’t run into you somewhere along the way! I often like to start Telephone by taking one half of Hostel Loop. Today, we took the west half Hostel to the north junction with Telephone. Then, from the SW corner of Moose Loop, I did a bit of non-track set skiing along Tom Snow trail to Mountain Road. And from there, I took Mountain View and Crystal Line back to the parking lot.