There’s nothing more enjoyable than 6K of downhill fun on excellent tracksetting and good, fast snow on Pocaterra.
Upper Pocaterra was trackset last night and the stretch between Whiskey Jack and Packers is in fantastic shape. Steve, who was skiing it the same time as I, said “close to perfect.” As you lose elevation towards the Lynx junction, a few wayward pine needles appear but the snow coverage and tracks were still excellent.
The air temperature at 11 a.m. at Elkwood Amphitheatre was -10°C with a sunny sky and no wind. The snow was -9. VR40 worked well except for the last K near the top of Whiskey Jack where I slipped a bit. It was a lot warmer at higher elevation. The snow temperature at the Pocaterra/WJ junction was -5.
Whiskey Jack hasn’t been groomed for a while and has lots of fresh snow but the tracks are reasonably good.
There is still one rock rearing its ugly head right in the middle of the trail on the very steep section of Whiskey Jack. Easy to avoid when climbing, but you may hit it if you are snowplowing on the way down.
Lynx and Amos are as Irene described… “some pine needles, some twigs poking through here and there” but just a minor annoyance.
The tracks on Wheeler are in good shape and the snow coverage is adequate, but there are a lot of pine needles on the snow. Despite the debris, the snow was fast.
I encountered a family of grouse on Lynx. I’m not sure if grouse chicks stay with their mom over the winter, but it looked like a hen and three chicks. Curious, I did some research and indeed “Some juveniles do not disperse far and may re-occur with their parent in winter.”
I had the pleasure of meeting a large number of skiers today, all ages, enjoying the nice day.
The Pipestone trails at Lake Louise were trackset today.
Saw 2 grouse at lynx junction with Pocaterra.
One walked out from the brush 3m from my daughter.