Wednesday, October 19, 2011

With the 2011/12 ski season soon upon us, SCaT has decided on three dates for trail maintenance of the Syncline Cross-Country Trail system.

Here they are:

Saturday, October 22
Sunday, October 30
Saturday, November 12

Meet at the regular place, i.e. the west parking lot of the Syncline Cross-Country Trails, half way between Beaver Mines and the Castle Mountain Resort, at 10 a.m. on the two Saturdays, and at 1p.m. on the Sunday. Bring saws, loppers, etc. Plan to spend four hours clearing, and one extra hour for lunch on the Saturdays, so finish at 3pm. Plan to spend three hours clearing on the Sunday, so finish at 4pm.

We welcome any and all chain saws. We also found last year that cruising around the trails on a mountain bike makes the work go far faster, so if you have one you could bring that too, along with any bob, or trailer, to pull behind and carry tools or gear. Branch loppers are useful, hammers and mauls too.

It would be modestly helpful if all who are coming would phone Jay Allen (628-3048), for the first two, or Dave McNeill (at 627-3476) for the third, ahead of time. It isn't necessary but avoids waiting around in the parking lot.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I was out Sunday morning on the Syncline trails. Still lots of snow and the base is holding. Also, you can ski pretty well anywhere if you're inclined to explore.
The snow should stay for a while yet (especially if it snows as forecast overnight Wednesday!)

A quick little announcement of our annual general meeting. We'll hold it Saturday, May 7, starting 5:30 p.m. It will be followed by a potluck supper and then a photo presentation of some pretty fun ski pictures taken by Edwin Knox who's done a lot of skiing in southern Alberta, both back country and cross-country. He's an excellent photographer also.
The meeting will be held at a private residence in Pincher Creek, at SCaT Director David Green's house.
Here is the address and directions on how to get there (plus a phone number if you're hopelessly lost!):

How to get to 724 Dundas Street, Pincher Creek.
Coming into town from the north: turn in to the left just beyond the Pharmasave Pharmacy as if you were going to the hospital (but don’t go there). Follow the road south-bound past the hospital (on Bev McLaughlin Drive), then take the first right onto Blairmore Street. Follow Blairmore to the end and then follow it as it swings south. Go one block…and there it is….724 Dundas Street….white house, black roof, cedar-sided kiln shed in the driveway.
Coming from downtown: turn off Main Street onto Hewetson Avenue (at the Legion intersection). Proceed north to Frederick Street (at the bottom of the hill) and turn right. Go one block east and turn left on Albert Avenue. Go one block north to Dundas Street, and turn left. Proceed almost to the top of the hill. You will see 724 perched on the edge of the hill on your left…..white house, black roof, cedar-sided kiln shed in the driveway. Either pull into the driveway or park on the street.
If lost, call 627-4831.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

At the Syncline Cross-Country Trails after lunch today:
the temperature was a bit above freezing, and it was sunny. In the shade the snow was hard and fast on the trails, in the sun the snow had just softened up enough to give a little grip and you could swing along, very nice. In fact, I tested some off-track skiing and the conditions were excellent; the snow has settled and I didn't break through except in one spot, an open slope that faced south. So, if you have any areas you've been dying to see, but didn't have a packed trail to it, now's the time to go truly cross-country and get there.
(On another note, I was in Waterton Park, Cameron Lake, on Sunday with friends and the skiing was very good. Though the temps were above freezing, the snow temperature seemed below 0, powder snow and lots of it, and you could move all over.)
Lots of snow left everywhere.

Monday, February 28, 2011

An incredible winter. I was out on the Syncline Trails on Saturday on 10 to 15 cm of new snow (over trails packed a week earlier), then from Sunday evening through til tonight another 25 cm. Of course, it may all blow away by the weekend. Don't forget there's a trail up by Castle Mountain Resort being packed, to be found on the east side of the river, running north for about 2 km. We're coming close to the end of our annual budget, so I'm not sure whether all this new snow will be packed this time round or not.

This also a reminder that there will be a guided outing on the Syncline Cross-Country trails this coming Saturday, the 5th. Meet at the southwest parking lot at 10:30 a.m., bring a lunch and something hot to drink. We'll poll the group to see who is familiar with what on the trails and lead to the least traveled areas. And please remember this is a guided tour, not a cross-country ski lesson.
Hope we see you and friends there this weekend.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Unfortunately, last Saturday's rain then overnight freeze has made low level skiing, including those at the Syncline Cross-Country Trails, crusty and/or fast. Hopefully, this Saturday, the 19th, we'll have the packer out smoothing things down, getting rid of the crust. But without new snow it'll be fast.
You might try higher altitude locles, like in Waterton, or the well-groomed trails at Chinook-Allison.

Monday, January 31, 2011

From Friday afternoon through Sunday morning, the Syncline Cross Country trails received 12 to 15 inches (30 - 38 cm). This on top of a very good base, hardened a week earlier by warm weather, including a little rain, then a hard freeze. The trails were machine packed on Saturday while it was snowing and I understand they are good for skiing and snowshoeing.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Today on the Syncline Trails: after last Sunday's rain and recent warm weather, then freezing, the trails are pretty crusted up. Fast on the downhill.
Perhaps there's better snow at higher ground.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

We were on the Beauvais Lake Provincial Park trails this afternoon. The conditions were perfect AND the Park staff has finally packed almost all the trails. Well worth the trip.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Snowing on this Saturday afternoon, January 8. We've got about 4 inches (10 cm), and it's still coming.
I was out Thursday at the Syncline Cross-Country trails. Conditions then were very slidy and I had trouble with just red wax on. Companions were on fish scale skis and it was a breeze.
With this new snow on top of a very good base, the skiing in this area ought to be worthwhile.