Judging from the trip reports, this was a day to be enjoyed everywhere in the SkierBob universe including the Pipestone trails which were cold, firm and fast.
It was a blue-tiful day. The temperature at the trailhead at 2 pm was -4°C but the snow was blue wax cold. There was a big blue sky with bright sun and no wind.
With the south access closed, everyone now parks at the north end of the parking lot. I’ve displayed a photo which shows where the trails are unavailable for skiing.
Today was the first time that I skied the trails clockwise. Everyone has to start out on Hector but after passing the farm buildings you can choose to stay on Hector#21 or take Pipestone#20. I chose Hector(and later Pipestone#20) and enjoyed a lot of sun while I climbed to the high point at 5.3K. It’s a net elevation gain of 160 metres.
At 5.3K is the Merlin#23/Pipestone#20 junction. I continued on Pipestone, hoping to reach the river while the sun was still shining. I made it to the river at 2:50 pm, just in time for last call at MaSid’s couch. It is an amazing structure located in the middle of the Pipestone river.
I backtracked to the junction, enjoying the beautiful scenery through the meadow one more time, and took Merlin down to Drummond.
It was nice skiing along Pipestone pond today and not having any drifted snow in the tracks. Another thing I noticed was the steep downhills haven’t become dished like in years past. I imagine that’s because the trails have only been open for a month.
The snow was very crunchy when I stepped out of the tracks to snowplow, but I was still able to control my speed.
I drove up to the lake after skiing and watched the temperature drop from -5 to -10 in the space of five minutes. It was insanely busy at the lake parking lot, even at 4:30 pm. Are the kids out of school this week?
I enjoyed the beautiful sunset in my rear view mirrow that Shulamit referenced on her trip report. Don’t miss the magnificent photos from Redearth Creek/Shadow Lake which Chuck posted.