Expand all Collapse all

Apr 17 (2013-04-17) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #40 [8.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Brief loop from P12=>#40=>#2=>#1 right=>#24 far end=>#40=>P12. Decided to ski up #2 black there are a few bare spots, with some streams running under the trail in places. Trail #1 was good past Western, but the usual bare spot near the bench has grown to 100 feet plus, #24 is bare at the start near the water tank, and #40 has the usual bare spots at the bench and the usual spot were the sun hits after the first descent.

What was more annoying were the amount of branches on the surface of the trails left over from the December storm cleanup. I am not sure if this was my last ski, with the high temperatures and rain for the next 2 days there may not be much left by saturday.
apr17a.JPGEnlargeImage
apr17b.JPGEnlargeImage
apr17d.JPGEnlargeImage
apr17e.JPGEnlargeImage
apr17h.JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 17 (2013-04-17) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 [13.6km], Glide Wax: Swix LF10 - with rilling, Grip Wax: fishscales
The end is nigh but not here yet.

I had a short PM tour to Huron from P10 via FP and Ridge for lunch and sitting. Returned via CP and FP. I took my own advice and used waxless which, although a tad inelegant, worked fine. I was able to ski most of the way with the exception of Kyber where I had to portage.

Both the FP and CP are variable with good sections of snow, sections of corn snow, and areas where the snow is almost done. From the FP to Shilly Shally Ridge is quite dirty with a lot of Hemlock debris; the bottom part of Kyber is bare; past Kyber there's very good coverage.

I've attached photos to show the best and the worst. The best is shown by shots of the snow pack beside the Fortune hill, of the snow gauge at Gossip Corner, and of one of the better sections of the FP by Lac Fortune. The worst is shown by shots of Kyber and of one of the worst sections of the FP.

On the sunny sections of the parkways the water is starting to run under the snow.

The snow should last until the weekend. As others have suggested probably P12 is the best starting point. Two park stalwarts departed today for the fire tower but have not reported back yet - I'm guessing they probably had a good day.
Snowbank.JPGEnlargeImage
BestFP.JPGEnlargeImage
SnowGauge.JPGEnlargeImage
Kyber.JPGEnlargeImage
WorstFP.JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 16 (2013-04-16) by Karl Saidla from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1 [11.1km], Glide Wax: NA, Grip Wax: NA
It is starting to be the time of year to head to the reliable late-season spots. We tried P10 this evening. There were alternating sections of bluish ice and old dirty snow with bare patches beginning to appear between P10 and the Fortune Parkway/Ridge Road Junction. We skied out Ridge Road in the direction of Penguin. Ridge Road was by far the best skiing, with little ice and no need to take off skis. It is certainly rock skiing and it is certainly dirty, but we had a great time enjoying a summer-like evening of skiing.
Apr 15 (2013-04-15) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 [13.6km], Glide Wax: Swix LF10 - with rilling, Grip Wax:
I agree with David's comment regarding FP and CP conditions except for a slightly different perspective from having skated. CP is quite cut up in the skating track between the T-junction and Huron - classic would be easier for that stretch. Wrt the wax/style conundrum I would advise skating in the AM and waxless for the PM.

I went from P10 via FP and CP to #1 past the lookout and then returned via Ridge to Huron and then slowly slogging my way back to P10. It was a beautiful day but not a day for serious skiing - you ski a bit and then stop to enjoy a bit. In the lookout area I was able ski most of the way (with difficulty) and walked in the area of Etienne Brule. Past the Champlain Lookout #1 was great with a deep base (photo attached); Kari skied #1B - he said it was just as good.

There is still a 30-40 cm base up there with pretty uniform coverage. I've attached two photos to show the snow depth: Jo-Ann's snow gauge of the bridge at Gossip Corner and the side of a stream beside Ridge Road.

Kari has talents beyond fire-starting at Western - he has demonstrated a greater dexterity with duct tape than anything attempted by Red Green. Photo attached.

For Ken's benefit I've attached a photo of the NCC notice regarding the new bird feeder policy. From now on the Chickadees are on their and the Barred Owl at Herridge will have to start hunting for its squirrels instead of waiting for them to come to the feeder - it's a win/lose situation for the squirrels however.
JAGauge.JPGEnlargeImage
stream_ridge.JPGEnlargeImage
t1a.JPGEnlargeImage
Kari.JPGEnlargeImage
avis.JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 15 (2013-04-15) by David Brownrigg from P10 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [6.5km], Glide Wax: N/A, Grip Wax: Universal Klister
Snow coverage on the FP and CP is still good with icey slushy sections that are now close to the pavement. Single classic lanes on either side of the FP, which appeared to have been groomed recently, are in good shape. No track grooming beyond the T junction on either side of the CP. Skied towards the first look out and the ungroomed track is mostly icey\\dirty but skiable. This was likely my last outing of the season. Weather does not look encouraging for the rest of the week and I squeezed my last tube of good klister last week. Used a non brand name klister for this trip which did not work well at all.
P1040070.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040076.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040072.JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 14 (2013-04-14) by Jo-Ann Holden from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: #15 (blue), #15 (black) [7.8km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: waxless skis
A beautiful and solitary ski late this afternoon, from P5, with short side trips on parts of trail 15 and two unmarked trails. The snow was very clean and not heavily used in this area, but VERY slow, even on the downhills. While the Gatineau Parkway had only one tiny bare spot, the forested trails had an impressive amount of snow, (except where there was none!) and equally impressive creeks creating intricate waterways through, around and under the trails. The constant sound of flowing water made for a very pleasant and peaceful outing. What a delight to be able to ski in mid April.
Apr 14 (2013-04-14) by Ken Trischuk from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 [13.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: waxless
Skied out of P7 today. Conditions were pretty good considering it's mid April. For me it was just nice to be skiing in the sunshine. Ridge road has been well "walked" by hikers but surprisingly I only saw 2 small groups of walkers while I skied. By contrast I saw more than a dozen skiers along this stretch and, despite the uneven surface, all of them had smiles on their faces. The first climb out of the lot is getting pretty dirty. Friday's snow is no longer hiding the debris but it was still skiable. Both the steep climb at Wattsford and trail 31 have some gravel showing through but you can ski around them for now (probably changing by the minute!).

Once on top of the ridge the snow depth improved and skiing was pretty decent despite the (many) hikers shallow boot prints. There was clearly some fresh grooming on the Fortune parkway up to Huron but by the time I got there it was pretty slushy. Interesting to see tire tracks on the parkway at the "T" coming from (and headed back to) Black lake. Maybe a truck "jumped" a barrier somewhere (P6?) and went for a "drive" to the lookouts last night?

Anyway, another nice ski on what is likely the last day of grooming. I can't imagine they will groom much tomorrow morning except maybe the Fortune parkway and after that the "season" is over for the groomers. This week has warm rains in the forecast so skiing may become difficult shortly. I'd wager Paul won't get a ski in next weekend but I would have lost the bet that we wouldn't have skied this weekend so I'll keep my money in my pocket. If there will be any snow next weekend... it will be out of P12 .
Apr 14 (2013-04-14) by Florence Lehmann from P10 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 [13.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
P10->FP->CP->Huron cabin->Ridge to gossip corner->FP
I went out later than Andy. The word of the day is SLOW. It was slow on the way up but not too bad. The bare patches at Huron Lookout discouraged me from going further. Ridge to gossip corner was in pretty good shape. By the time I hit FP, it had gotten quite soupy.
Somebody told me that Ridge was in fairly rough shape after Keogan as a lot of hikers walked it.
This might have been my last ski. This weekend was a blast, and I might want to finish on such a high note.
I'm glad to see the P12 loop was still fun.
Cheers.
DSCN2528.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2527.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2474.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 14 (2013-04-14) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #40, #1 (blue) [16.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Skied out of P12=>#40=>#24=>right on #1=>Wolf Bench=>#1=>#2 black=>#40=>P12. I knew arriving at the parking lot with roughly 15 cars for this time of year spelled one thing= HIKERS

I was correct I met 19 hikers just on trail #40, and 15 skiers during my whole outing.I only met 4 skiers on # 1 blue around the Wolf bench, a few of them I talked to had been all the way to McKinstry and said there was only one problem area all the way up there.

On trail #40 see first pic, that was one of two problem areas that I skied on, the latter was the pic from Florence's report of yesterday, the bare patch on #2 black which had a narrow strip has now vanished. All in all not too bad for April 14.

Every weekend now I keep wondering how much longer, if we will get another week of skiing? The surprise snow of friday did help extend the season for a few more days anyways for sure.
apr14a.JPGEnlargeImage
apr14b.JPGEnlargeImage
apr14c.JPGEnlargeImage
apr14d.JPGEnlargeImage
apr14e.JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 14 (2013-04-14) by Andy Jonyas from P10 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [6.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Although I could not remember so much snow in the Parc this late in the year, it is getting rough and bumpy on the parkways. At 0900 I was at Huron, with big flakes of snow falling. It was like December. It was also dead quiet, and not having skied too much over the week, I realized how much I will miss the compelling tranquility of winter. This is Andy, signing off.
�02_(Medium).JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 14 (2013-04-14) by Ron Lorenson from N/A grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy [4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
The last time I was at Huron there was an NCC notice stating that, due to a policy of keeping the park as natural as possible including a prohibition of feeding wildlife, the bird feeders would be removed. Those welfare-bum chickadees can look elsewhere for their sunflower seeds.
Apr 13 (2013-04-13) by Ken Trischuk from P16 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: Vauhti purple, Grip Wax: waxless
Decided to ski out of P16 today and had a nice glide out to Healy and Herridge. No fresh grooming but none expected. Only one other car in the lot when I arrived but there were a few people who had skied this way earlier than I and they set a nice track. The first climb was still covered with yesterdays snow but it was starting to fade by the time I got back - might be gravel by now that the rain has started. Once in the trees though the snow was plenty deep and apart from a couple of branches to slide across I found no rocks to speak of. Crossed a litle stream that had cut a narrow perpendicular crevasse across the trail and the snow looked to me to be about 12-16" deep (photo).

The fresh snow wasn't too quick but it was still a pleasant day out in the woods and I had the trail all to myself. Never found the owner of the other car and the ski tracks went no farther than Herridge before returning so they must have gone down to Meech and along 36 while I was out. Also noticed the feeders have been removed now so no more buffet for the birds and squirrels. Considering its mid April and excellent outing on the boards.
Resize_of_Rotation_of_IMG_00000036.jpgEnlargeImage
Resize_of_Re-exposure_of_Rotation_of_IMG_00000038.jpgEnlargeImage
Resize_of_Re-exposure_of_IMG_00000039.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 13 (2013-04-13) by Florence Lehmann from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #40 [8.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
More pics from today
DSCN2493.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2519.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2517.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2509.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2500.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 13 (2013-04-13) by Florence Lehmann from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #33 [8.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: Klister...
Thanks to Paul's report, I decided to go back to P12 today. I was not disappointed. I did #40->right on #24->left on #1-> #1b to Champlain Lookout->#1->#2->40.
Lots of fresh snow. It was soft and somewhat abrasive. Otherwise I got pretty good glide. By the time I hit #2, it was a bit warmer and slower. Other than that, the snow was pristine.
No grooming/tracksetting. Skiers did a good job at it though. Surface was fairly even throughout. A couple of branches are starting to show on #2, as Paul mentioned and one narrow (still deep) strip of snow in one area (still very passable). Because of snowplowing, #2 had a large trough in the middle. With freezing temperatures overnight, this might be a challenge earlier in the morning on Sunday.
There were boot marks and snowshoe marks along #2. Not a problem today. Those could be "fun" tomorrow.
Lots of skiers out today. Yeah! I even saw a couple zooming by on #9 and another backcountry trail (I forget which one).
This loop is still in very good shape. Given that temperatures are supposed to go below zero, it'd be great if Demsis thought of grooming with lighter equipment to break the ice (does anybody have a way to reach them or is this hopeless?). If you go later in the day, you'll have a blast.
DSCN2525.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2521.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2520.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2501.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2511.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 13 (2013-04-13) by Megan McTavish from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [6.5km], Glide Wax: Vauhti HF Yellow, Grip Wax: Vauhti Universal and Red klister mixed (or fish scales)
Wet fresh snow, but fairly firm and surprisingly not that slow. They groomed from P8 to Huron. You can ski everywhere else too, but the groomed parts were the nicest. You can still use good skis on the parkway, but it might be smart to use rock skis on Ridge Road and other smaller trails.
Enjoy the skiing before the rain!
Apr 12 (2013-04-12) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming 
Trails Skied: #2 (blue), #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #40 [9.3km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Fresh Powder in April wow!!!! didnt quite know what to expect as I made the slow drive to P12, when I got there shortly after 3 pm there were 3 cars and signs of tracks of a few hours ago.

It was a mix of snow/ ice pellets falling, the trails had a soft cushion of fresh powder on top of a hard crusty base. I only met one skier, there were no tracks on Ridge between the to entrance's of trail #24.

Like Jo-Ann , I also skied down to Western chalet , now I know from Jo-Ann's report who was there to start the fire today. All in all to my surprise it was my best ski this week. One problem spot racing down trail #2 black there is a bare patch so you have to either slow down to try and ski the narrow strip around it or stop to continue down after that.

I noticed driving by on my way back that the gate's are closed at the gatineau parkway entrance's, I guess they dont want cars driving there in the next few weeks before the official opening of the parkways to cars.

Not that I expected any grooming today but that is also a sign (the gates being closed) that they are done grooming for the season.
Apr 12 (2013-04-12) by Jo-Ann Holden from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, North Loop, #1, #1B, #2 (blue), #3 [23.8km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
A day without other commitments - and fresh snow/pellets falling. A great gift for mid April. None of the parking lots were plowed today, and Meech Lake Road was extremely icy and dangerous, so I felt fortunate not to have driven far. I was the first car to arrive at P10 (of 2), followed momentarily by Kari, that well known skier who is always in the park.

Conditions were surprisingly good. It was minus 2, and the combination of carrot and a thin layer of VR 60 worked like a charm. Kari had a dirty looking klister on his skis, which also worked well. Go figure.

The climb up Fortune was interesting. There were ruts of ice from yesterday's poorly timed grooming, but the fresh powder had enough presence to give good classic conditions in the tracks. Ridge was in a similar state. As the morning progressed the ice became irrelevant.

I skied out to the bench by 24, as the wind roared and trees moaned. I was wondering if it was smart to be out. The snow turned to rain for a a while, then to stinging ice pellets. There were a few good gusts of wind which pushed me along at a furious pace. The ice pellets were quite nasty on the return trip along Ridge. A lunch stop at Western was an unexpected treat, because Kari had a roaring fire going which allowed me to dry my wet gloves and coat.

The trail to Western was delightful because it hadn't been groomed earlier and was not icy. The packed snow/ice pellets were quite firm, fast and fun for practicing step turns. 1B and Burma were also really fun, as the snow was now coming down furiously. I was perhaps lucky to not hit the two exposed rocks on the trail, and I did totally wimp out on the last hill, SIDE STEPPING (!!!) down the steepest part, as the coverage was a bit dicey.

Just to round out the day, I stopped at P8 on the way home (also not plowed and quite deep by this point) and enjoyed an exhausting skate ski on the Doldrums. There was one other car in the lot. The snow was fast but deep. Love those ice pellets!! Last but not least, a stop at Les Saisons for a dark roast coffee and something sweet! Photos will have to wait until this evening. But now I'm ready to move on to spring.
Apr 12 (2013-04-12) by Karl Saidla from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy [4km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF Violet, Grip Wax: Vauhti Universal Klister
Last night we tried P10 given the fact that it had been groomed. By the time we got out it had cooled off and things were freezing up so it was fairly bumpy and rutted for skating. The classic tracks between P10 and the T were in good shape. Grooming had not continued beyond the T and it was crusty and frozen and generally not worth it. Looking forward to some snow today!
Apr 11 (2013-04-11) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy [4km], Glide Wax: Swix LF10 - with rilling, Grip Wax:
The FP has been groomed this AM for both skate and classic. Conditions are good in most places with the exception of the few places where the underlying ice didn't yield to the groomer. Grooming stops at the T-junction. I attempted to continue on the CP but the surface was too hard and uneven for any reasonable skating - perhaps now that the temperature is above 0 C it might be more doable. In spite of the constrained terrain I had quite a good day. Conditions should be good today for both classic and skating - i.e., until the wet-snow dump comes - after that for a few days it'll be fish-scale or hairies skiing.

I understand that the North Loop has also been groomed but it didn't look that good from either P9 or P8. There seemed be significant stretches of ice.

There's still a lot of base up there with continuous coverage. I've attached a picture of Jo-ann's snow gauge to show the depth.
GossipCorner.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 11 (2013-04-11) by Karl Saidla from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Gatineau Pkwy [12.9km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF or HF Yellow, Grip Wax: Vauhti Red Mixed with Vauhti Silver Plus
Skied again last night from P5. Conditions were very similar to the day before--soft and dirty, but the snow is actually getting old enough that in some places it is reasonably fast. It didn't appear that any grooming had been done recently, so the classic tracks were starting to disappear...still fun though!
Apr 10 (2013-04-10) by Jo-Ann Holden from P10 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy [4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Last photo!
April-10-Dirty-Snow.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 10 (2013-04-10) by Jo-Ann Holden from P10 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy [4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
A beautiful spring day for skiing. A few of the usual early melting spots are looking suspiciously thin, and some spots, especially classic tracks, are getting very dirty. The skating was slow or not so slow, depending on the snow/ice content, but it was great to be out. P10 was almost empty today. There is one photo that didn't appear, so I'll post it separately. A few others are on www.musicianonskis.ca/blog
130410_Fortune.jpgEnlargeImage
April-10-Fortune.jpgEnlargeImage
April-10-Snow-Depth.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 10 (2013-04-10) by Karl Saidla from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , #1 Penguin Climb, #1 [10.1km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF or HF Yellow, Grip Wax: Vauhti Universal Klister with some Vauhti Red Klister
Got out for a short ski last night from P5. We went up Penguin and along Ridge Road for awhile. Generally speaking there is still alot of snow. Be careful of a few bare patches on Penguin. It is slow and dirty, and I didn't see evidence of recent grooming on either the Parkway or Ridge Road. Great to still be able to do some reasonable skiing at this time of year though....
Apr 9 (2013-04-09) by Paul Jaenicke from P7 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1, #30, #4, #14, #31 [9.8km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Decided to check on the trails out of P7. Skied up #30=>#1=>#4=>#14=>#1=>#31=>#30=>P7. The good news trail #4 & #14 lots of snow and fairly clean. The bad Ridge road is very dirty understandably with a lot of evergreens there, along with a few flooded areas.

The worse is #trail 30 has a large flooded area near the start, and lots of debris is showing up from the tree cleanup. The Penguin hill is still skiable to one side but not for long. I skied by #6 & #17 they are un-skiable many rocks and ditches opened up.
apr9a.jpgEnlargeImage
apr9b.jpgEnlargeImage
apr9c.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 9 (2013-04-09) by David Brownrigg from P10 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [6.5km], Glide Wax: N/A, Grip Wax: Vhauti Universal Klister
When it gets late in the season I can always count on the FP for decent skiing. No fresh grooming today but the tracks are still mostly clean even after last night's rains. There are more icey slushy stretches with no more track setting but not enough to say classic skiing is done. The pavement is starting to show here and there (just beyond the curve at Fortune Lake and on the CP just before Huron Lookout). Water falls are starting to appear beside the FP.
P1040055.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040054.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040050.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040044.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040048.JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 9 (2013-04-09) by Ron Lorenson from P9 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [1.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Comment:
The NCC web-site reports (in both languages) that P8-P9 was trackset 4 days ago for classic and 2 days ago for skating. I was on the Doldrums yesterday at noon when the big tracksetter did both sides of the North Loop. This web-site can no longer be trusted - any connection with actual conditions would be only coincidental.
Apr 8 (2013-04-08) by Katie McMahon from P2 grooming 
Trails Skied: #27, #15 (blue), Pink Lake Access [6.8km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Still a ton of snow out there! Trail 15 was rock skiing, but still very do-able. The parkways are still completely covered, but are un-groomed and a tad slushy. Warm sunny days and complete snow coverage, all that is missing are the skiers! Get out there and enjoy the spring skiing!
Apr 8 (2013-04-08) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #40 [8.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Still some good skiing out of P12. My route was #40=>#24=>left on #1=>#2=>#40=>P12. Only 2 thin areas on this route see pictures, everything else was good, still a foot of snow on bridges on #40. I have skied on these bridges with a few inches of snow before.

The trails were in better shape then I thought they would be, soft but hardly any boot marks or big ruts, and you could ski the big descent on #2 with ease. A few small twigs and branches are appearing here and there where the tree cutting took place.

With the forecast of colder temperatures and possible snow friday, I am guessing we may get another week or 2 of skiing.
apr8a.JPGEnlargeImage
apr8b.JPGEnlargeImage
apr8c.JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 8 (2013-04-08) by Florence Lehmann from P8 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
The North Loop was still quite skiable this morning. Snow was quite granular but very good for skate skiing. Some water in the tracks closer to P9. The loop should still be good tomorrow. After that...
A few skiers were out, both skating and classicing.
DSCN2454.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2456.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2464.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2468.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2471.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 7 (2013-04-07) by Jo-Ann Holden from P9 grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
It was, surprisingly, one of the nicest skate skis of the year: the snow in the skate lane was clean, fast, firm and very controllable. There were no sunny patches to slow things down. There were a few icy patches, but even they were fine. Unlike yesterday there was only one car at P9 and almost no one at P8. I had tucked Garry’s canoe hat in my bag, and for a while skied to the accompaniment of a steady rain pattering on the brim. In addition to beavers, there were rowdy geese and stealthy ducks. No herons, yet.
Apr 6 (2013-04-06) by Jo-Ann Holden from P6 grooming 
Trails Skied: MacKenzie-King Rd [0.8km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
I started too late in the afternoon, but wanted to at least try it, since the weather was so beautiful. There was a mix of conditions, from patches of yesterday's icy grooming, to soft deep sections, to thick crunchy ruts. I'll try again tomorrow - much earlier! The most interesting part of the trip, though, was seeing how many people were out. P8 and P6 were close to full, and it looked as though there were no spots available at the visitor's center. I suspect these were not all skiers, but rather spring lovers. There were happy cyclists on every road, and walkers on the sides of the roads (and probably on the ski trails too?). There were also impatient drivers tailgating on the way home from their recreation in the park. Winter is coming to an end!
Apr 6 (2013-04-06) by Florence Lehmann from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #40 [8.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Last set of pics
DSCN2142.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2143.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2145.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2146.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 6 (2013-04-06) by Florence Lehmann from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #40 [8.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
2nd set of pics
DSCN2130.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2131.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2139.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2140.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2141.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 6 (2013-04-06) by Florence Lehmann from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #40 [8.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
P12-#40->#24->#1->#2->#40
According to NCC website, P12 was a no go. I figured I'd give it a try given there's usually lots of snow left in that area. Well...
There is indeed plenty of snow left on the trails I skied. Given the overnight temperatures, Demsis could have at least groomed with lighter equipment. The snow was icy, rutty all the way up 40. #24 was a bit better if only because it's not as uphill and some sections had been softened by the sun. #2 was fine on the flat part - no fun on the downhill as it was icy and rutty yet again.
I came across 4 skiers and 10 hikers. I can't blame people for hiking that part of the park given conditions. They didn't really damage the trails.

I enjoyed my outing only because the park looked so pretty in the sun, and I had good chats with total strangers. On the other hand, I'm utterly disappointed by Demsis' (and the NCC's?) lack of judgment. They could have made the loop much more enjoyable, had they groomed. Oh well.
I'm looking forward to seeing the Nordix event. That'll be fun.
Will post more pics shortly.
DSCN2123.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2124.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2126.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2127.jpgEnlargeImage
DSCN2128.jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 6 (2013-04-06) by Andre Marchand from P2 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Gatineau Pkwy, #7, #15 (blue) [21.6km], Glide Wax: Vauhti speed purple (LF), Grip Wax:
Still tons of snow on the parkways, soft in places, rutted and hard in others. An awesome day for a skate ski, but if u do the smaller trails like #15, I wouldn't use your favorite skis, there are some rocks poking through in places. See ya at the Nordix at camp Fortune tomorrow! :)
Apr 6 (2013-04-06) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #1 (blue) [23.8km], Glide Wax: Swix LF8 - no rilling, Grip Wax:
It was a five star but even better it was a five swamp day - this has been my best ski day of this season. My route was FP, CP, #1 to my favorite swamp past #24, and on return #1, Ridge to Huron, CP, and FP back to P10. Sheila has described the excellent conditions on the parkways where they have been groomed. Between Huron and Champlain it's the usual ice and asphalt combination; however, I didn't have to take off my skis. Past Champlain, on #1, there is lots of snow: if Demsis had groomed, conditions would have been truly extraordinary; however, this morning it was hard and quite rutted so I resorted to double-poling in the classic tracks. On the way back the sun had had softened the ruts so that skating #1 was much more pleasurable.

With the exception of the lookouts coverage is quite uniform. Things are getting thin at the bench on #1. The sunny sections CP and FP are turning to corn snow so there will probably be bare spots in those sections in the days to come.

Today I have skied dry powder, renovated granular, hard-pack, soft wet powder, and corn snow - I never had to ski slow slush. That has to be the ultimate in April conditions.

The best, however, was crust-cruising the swamps. The surface stayed firm throughout the day with about 1 cm of powder on top from yesterday. I missed some swamps but I managed to enjoy the main ones - five in number.
Apr 6 (2013-04-06) by Paul Jaenicke from P19 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Skied out from lac Philippe P19, on trail #50 up to the bench at the intersection with trail #52. Overall conditions varied from good in open areas to icy with some debris in shaded areas around the lake. A few bare patches here and there but nothing that you couldn't get around.

There had been grooming this morning on #50, I met some skiers that had come up #52 and said everything was good. I could see a few bare patches at the beginning of #55 the usual spots. Probably in the next few days it will be the end of skiing for this area with some walking involved.
apr6a.JPGEnlargeImage
apr6b.JPGEnlargeImage
apr6c.JPGEnlargeImage
apr6d.JPGEnlargeImage
apr6f.JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 6 (2013-04-06) by Sheila Kealey from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Champlain Pkwy [9.5km], Glide Wax: Vauhti blue, Grip Wax:
Great skiing, especially for the month of April. The parkway "loop" was groomed for skating, and in pretty good shape. Clean snow with no pavement or grass poking though. Pretty hard and fast surface at 10 AM (still pretty good) - which softened up to perfect and easier ski conditions by noon. There's snow in the overnight forecast but rapid warming tomorrow, so earlier in the morning might be the best conditions.
Apr 5 (2013-04-05) by Jo-Ann Holden from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1 [11.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
A very happy trip for me. I'm able to skate ski now after a difficult 2 years and was absolutely ecstatic to have climbed the Fortune Parkway twice this week on skate skis. (which also happens to be just twice in the the last 2 years!!) The past weekend also featured Burma but today the conditions were not quite that good. I really appreciate being uninjured and would like to stay that way if possible!

It was quite soft going up the Parkway at 2:15. I felt a bit like a Monty Python character lifting my skis so high to escape the deep ruts of soft, heavy, slow snow. Great workout though! Ridge Road was a different story, because the slow fresh powder and ungroomed snow made for very slow conditions, sticky conditions. It was still possible - just barely - to ski right up to the Champlain Lookout on a narrow strip of snow. It was all too easy to picture cyclists congregating there soon. By the time we turned around the snow was starting to refreeze and the descent down the Fortune Parkway was slightly beyond my personal limit for speed. YAAAAAH! You had to pretty much "go for it" because the snow was getting too crusty for anything else.

If it's groomed tomorrow it will be fantastic, especially early in the day (when I can't be there!). I hope Demsis honours their contract and keep grooming right up until the 15th. It's so rare to have this much snow into April.
Apr 5 (2013-04-05) by David Brownrigg from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: N/A, Grip Wax: Vhauti Universal Klister
After yesterday's crappy ski on #53 (poor track conditions, wrong wax) opted for fresh grooming, clean snow and a relatively flat trail on the doldrums. Was not disappointed...a magnificent sunny afternoon with the wind at my back (at least on the return trip back to P8!). Universal klister worked perfectly in the open areas where the snow was wet and soggy but tended to stick in the shaded, icey spots. Slush is starting to form in a few stretches towards P9. It'll be interesting to see how the classic conditions hold up after the forecasted rains on Sunday and Monday...
Apr 5 (2013-04-05) by Andy Jonyas from P6 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #57, Champlain Pkwy [8.7km], Glide Wax: unknown, Grip Wax:
Despite fresh grooming,everyone who skied sunk in, leaving a lumpy bumpy rutted mess.Very slow and unpleasant skiing.If there is a grooming overnight after it all freezes, it should be really good in the am. Not this evening.
Apr 5 (2013-04-05) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy [4km], Glide Wax: Swix LF8 - no rilling, Grip Wax:
Conditions are more a novelty than an enjoyment. The base is groomed soft granular with 1 cm of new snow on top. It's interesting to have new snow on the 5 April but at 3 C that new snow tends to slowing. If you're skating it would be best to use a warm wax and have rilled skis. If you're interested in doing classic waxless or fluor wax would be best; I met a group of normally manic classic skiers who had klister on - they were poling down Fortune hill - a new experience for that gang.

The conditions should dramatically improve when the temperature drops below freezing. With a forecast of -10 C for tonight tomorrow should be superb. What I'm hoping for is the ice shells that develop overnight when wet snow refreezes - if that happens look for me crust-cruising on the swamps with a broad smile on my face.
dscn0048_(2).jpgEnlargeImage
dscn0053_(2).jpgEnlargeImage
Apr 4 (2013-04-04) by Paul Jaenicke from P2 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #27, #26, #29 (shared) [19.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
After skiing the last 2 days in icy tracks was nice to ski in softer tracks today. Now completely disregard the website, anything that has snow on it is skiable.

I skied around the Realis plein air area, and all the trails there had good snow coverage, one patch of pavement was showing on gatineau parkway at the intersection with trail #26.

Regardless of no grooming in that area of the park, with warm sun and temperatures well above zero why would there be a thumbs down? This website needs a major overhaul for next season.

With temperatures falling tomorrow, I dont expect good conditions unless there is some grooming!!!!
Apr 4 (2013-04-04) by Ron Lorenson from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: Swix LF10 - no rilling, Grip Wax:
The good thing about being an old fart is that you can ski whenever you want; the bad thing about being an old fart is that you no longer have the stamina to ski whenever you want. Today would have been a great day to ski to the end-of-grooming at the old McKinstry; however, I didn't have it - I'm skied out and had to content myself with a day of rest by playing around on the Doldrums for an hour and a bit. Not so bad however - conditions were great and the sun was classic April. There was excellent grooming for both skate and classic. The snow was starting to soften but not to the point that it was starting to suck at the skis - there was an effortless glide that erased the uphills. I expect that conditions would have been even better on the ridge. I expect that conditions will hold throughout the day and will only get faster later in the day - a good day to ski wherever there's been grooming.

Tomorrow I hope to be rested and to put in a fuller day on the ridge.
Apr 4 (2013-04-04) by David Brownrigg from P17 grooming 
Trails Skied: #53 [8.9km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Violet and Swix Red
Arrived at P17 intending to ski #52 but found no classic tracks even though the NCC website indicated recent grooming (26hrs ago). No big deal, continued on #53 but the groomed classic track ended at the junction of #51 which is now closed. Track conditions varied from nicely groomed to crusty, icey ruts to wet snow mainly in the sunny open areas. Dirt and bare patches are starting to appear and piles of debris left over from the December ice storm cleanups. Not a great ski overall mainly due to poor wax choices on my part (used violet and then red when clearly klister was the order of the day..).
Apr 3 (2013-04-03) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, Champlain Pkwy, #1 (green) (#2 - #24) [23.7km], Glide Wax: Swix LF8, Grip Wax: n/a
I've just returned from the best April skiing that I've had in many years. Initially I thought that grooming was only on the FP and the CP (both ways from the T-junction) so I indulged myself skiing the parkways on great skating conditions. I then stopped at Huron for lunch and sunning - it was there that someone told that even better skiing was to be had on #1 past the Champlain lookout and that the grooming went all the way (my informant had gone to the Wolf Ridge). Being a trusting person I investigated and found that indeed skiers' paradise does exist after the minor hell of the stretch between Huron and Champlain: Ridge has not been groomed and is icy but doable with care; the parkway is a mixture of ice, snow, and asphalt - where there is snow attempts have been made to groom - for the rest you're on your own. I recommend the parkway path to paradise.

Although I skated and consider conditions to be best for skating I could also have had a great day doing classic.

The tracksetting team has really excelled today.
Apr 2 (2013-04-02) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 [13.6km], Glide Wax: Swix LF6, Grip Wax:
Rather than giving my route I'll give the constraints of the ski area that I could cover. From P10 FP is trackset, CP is done from the T junction to Huron, and #1 is done in both directions from Gossip Corner. I skied back-and-forth on FP and CP and went along Rodge as far as Shilly-Shally. Conditions are fine granular - great for skating and good for classic. On the parkways the fine granular was just what skating skis were made for; the classic tracks were good but shallow. In places Ridge is even better although there are areas of boilerplate and debris. For classic klister or a combination of klister and hard wax would work well.

When I was passing P8 at 11:00 AM the groomer was heading up the GP. My guess is that his route will be to do GP and then CP. That being the case CP and GP would probably be a better choice for virgin snow this PM rather than FP which will become more rutted.
Apr 2 (2013-04-02) by David Brownrigg from P10 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [6.5km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Blue
Checked the NCC site around 8:30 AM before heading out and all trails had the red 'not recommended' symbol with the only grooming being the doldrums. Decided to chance P10 and luckily the FP was freshly groomed for both classic and skate. The classic tracks were a combo of either deep set or very thin and icey. Swix blue grip wax worked nicely and the conditions were pleasantly fast. Intended to ski up to the Champlain lookout but the grooming ended abruptly just before the Huron lookout (see pic below). Took off my skis and walked for awhile to see if it picked up further on, but no. Heard the groomer over on ridge so skied back down the FP and hooked onto ridge. The fresh tracks on ridge were thin or covered over by the groomer here and there but skiable. Other than the windy January like temps it was a fair to good ski..
P1040026.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040027.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040031.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040032.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040033.JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 1 (2013-04-01) by Florence Lehmann from P11 grooming 
Trails Skied: #36 (blue) [6.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Another try at 36 but only 4km in and back for lack of time. Not much has changed. Trail is overall pretty good. A few rocks showing in the middle of the trail shortly before you get to the boathouse. Snow/ice near boathouse will be all gone on a 100m stretch any time.
I came across somebody who was skiing in from Lac Philippe. He said conditions were good all the way from there.
Apr 1 (2013-04-01) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #33, #40 [9.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Few skiers out this morning my route was P12=>#40=>#2 black=>#1 right=>#24=>#1 left=>#2=>#33=>#40=>P12.

Nothing has been groomed today which is fine, but temperatures are dropping and wind is howling, the downhills are quite fast but controllable, but later this afternoon might be an adventure. Hopefully there will be grooming overnight or early morning with colder temperatures expected the next few days.

All the trails I skied still had good coverage, one small rock on #33 showing, and the bench area on Ridge past Western is getting thin. A few small twigs and branches had fallen on the wooded trails, I tossed a few of them aside.

Trail #40 & #2 were suffering from old grooming plus the infamous boot marks, the classic tracks on most trails are shallow or washed out. The skating lane on Ridge still looked fairly good for now until it gets colder and the ruts freeze up.
apr1a.JPGEnlargeImage
apr1b.JPGEnlargeImage
Apr 1 (2013-04-01) by David Brownrigg from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #27, #29 (alternative), #29 (shared) [7.6km], Glide Wax: N/A, Grip Wax: Vhauti Universal Klister
Arrived at P1 hoping to ski #5 and # 29 was deterred by bad conditions. The classic tracks are almost completely faded and dirty with stretches of ice. So, moved over to the GP which was not groomed but the tracks were at least serviceable. Hooked up again to #5 in the Mont Bleu area and skied to #15. Tracks there are faded as well but in better shape. The open stretch on #27 between the GP and the tree line is already impassable with open water. Hopefully Demsis will groom this week....presume they are waiting for things to freeze as per the weather forecast..
Mar 31 (2013-03-31) by Florence Lehmann from P11 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #36 (blue) [6.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: Klister
Other pics.
There's still a good base on most of the trail.
start_of_36.jpgEnlargeImage
snow_bridge_1.jpgEnlargeImage
snow_bridge_2.jpgEnlargeImage
rock_showing.jpgEnlargeImage
other_rock.jpgEnlargeImage
Mar 31 (2013-03-31) by Florence Lehmann from P11 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #36 (blue) [6.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: Klister
I was delighted to see #36 is still skiable. I did it until the junction that takes you close to the lake (6km in).
Conditions vary. Snow is getting dirty in spots but still quite good. Tracks are shallow to non existent but it wasn't a problem. Some ice in a few spots. A few rocks showing on the side of the trail but nothing of concern. There's a 50 meter strech that has either ice or dirt. But Tuesday, it'll probably bare.
Enjoy this trail while you still can.
boathouse.jpgEnlargeImage
boots_dirt.jpgEnlargeImage
clean_snow.jpgEnlargeImage
dirty_snow.jpgEnlargeImage
ice.jpgEnlargeImage
Mar 31 (2013-03-31) by Garry Tarr from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #3 [19.1km], Glide Wax: CH8 plus rilling, Grip Wax:
Surprisingly there were parking spots in P10 when we started at 10AM, and even more when we returned around noon. I skate skied up the FP, west on Ridge and 1B past 24 to the intersection with the Blanchet snowshoe trail, then returned via Burma. Early on the FP offered great skating, but by noon it was getting quite soft and chewed up. The classic tracks still offered a reasonably fast descent. The best grooming (and best skiing) was on Ridge Road between 1B and the western intersection with 24. There the snow was clean and the surface flat, offering pretty good glide. Since there isn't much traffic on this section conditions will likely remain good for the rest of the day. West of the western intersection with 24 there had not been grooming and the trail had been stomped by a large group of hikers. Burma was fairly lumpy (hard to believe it had been groomed, although the NCC web site said otherwise) and the snow was quite dirty. For some reason there was an abundance of yellow "danger" tape on Burma. There were a couple of spots where the tape was warranted. One was an exposed rock on the edge of the swamp near the intersection with 9. The other was an exposed patch on the final descent to the FP. Sadly this hill is in rough shape, and won't be skiable much longer. There were also signs of dirt about to break through at the base of the Khyber Pass and the bench on Ridge near 24. Elsewhere the snow was generally still deep and the coverage complete. It's definitely worth getting out to ski this afternoon, particularly if you can get to the western part of Ridge Road.
Mar 31 (2013-03-31) by Matt McInnes from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #3 [15.9km], Glide Wax: Don't know, Grip Wax:
Great morning of skiing. Parkways, Ridge and Burma were groomed. Burma was in pretty rough shape but ski-able. Everything else was very nice. Crust cruising was also great. Enjoy.
Mar 30 (2013-03-30) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #33, #40, #1 (blue) [16.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Beautiful day started out from P12->#40=>#24=>#1 blue=>Wolf bench=>#1=>#24=>#40=>#33=>#2=>#40=>P12,

Still lots of snow coverage everywhere I skied, more then a foot deep on the bridge on #40, no recent grooming but it didn't matter snow was quite soft by noon, except in shaded areas was a little harder. Even at the Wolf bench lots of snow coverage, the big rock still covered in snow.

Oddly enough there were only about a dozen cars in the parking lot, and during my outing I met more walkers then skiers, yes the Walkers were out in droves I counted 10 of them, 6 on trail#2 along with one dog. I guess these people don t see the signs or completely ignore them.

Tomorrow should be good again before the rains come in late afternoon, then monday we get a cold snap. Ken predicted another weekend of ski maybe, my guess is 2 more weeks.
IMG_2179.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2180.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2181.JPGEnlargeImage
Mar 30 (2013-03-30) by Ron Lorenson from P9 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #1 (blue) [23.8km], Glide Wax: Swix LF102 with rilling, Grip Wax: n/a
Took my traditional spring skate to the pond/swamp between #1/#24. My route was:
P9 => Doldrums => #32 => FP => CP => #1 => spring swamp.
At the beginning conditions were exceptionally good with new tracksetting on the North Loop, FP, & CP. After the Champlain lookout conditions went south: there had been no new tracksetting and the snow was still hard with a number of frozen deep ruts from yesterday - this meant that the rest of the tour was more one of picking my way rather than pleasure - but I was a man with a mission and I had to get to that swamp.

The swamp was still supportive when I got to it so I managed to get a good skate around it (visiting favorite spots). I then spent a good while reclining on a bare bank communing with the swamp. Unfortunately I spent too long on the bank: when I returned conditions had gone from hard to soft and slow so that the return trip was mostly work all the way.

There's still a lot of snow and with a forecast of -2 C for tonight, with tracksetting, conditions tomorrow morning should be superb. Snow coverage on CP is starting to thin between Etienne Brule and Champlain.

Another comment on the NCC "Ski Conditions":
In spite of the excellent tracksetting this morning on the North Loop, the FP, and the CP the web-site reports that the FP and CP were trackset 29 hours ago (as of 16:30) and the North Loop was reported as being done 25 hours ago. If there's no interest in providing accurate information the NCC should get rid of it in case someone, mistakenly, thinks that it contains valid information. Either that or fix it - currently it is at best a joke.
Mar 30 (2013-03-30) by Ken Trischuk from P19 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #55 (green - shared) [18.1km], Glide Wax: Vauhti purple, Grip Wax:
Gorgeous day of spring skiing. My timing was pretty good today. My wax selection was irrelevant for the first half hour(icy fast!), perfect for the middle hour and too cold for the last half hour... so, nailed it! Fresh grooming on the 50 and 55 shared. Classic tracks looked a little choppy but servicable when I started but no shock with yesterdays warm temperatures and then a fairly hard freeze last night. The skate lane was smooth and fast to start and slowly became a little slushy in the direct sun as things warmed up. Skied out 50 to Herridge before coming back. Detoured out the 55 (shared) to Renaud to do a little warm bench sitting. Alas the bench by the lake was already scooped but the picnic tables at Renaud made a fine backup to enjoy the cacaphony of happy birds swirling about.

None of the side trails (55(classic), 54 or 52) had been regroomed since yesterday but they all looked manageable with the classic tracks in good shape. Mind you I didn't ski down them. The downhills might have been a little rough early but surely improved as the day warmed up. Amazing how fast the snow pack is melting. Tall snow banks are now a memory but the tracks are still continuous and should hold for a while longer (another weekend?). Should be another nice day tomorrow if the temperatures dip below zero again tonight.
Mar 29 (2013-03-29) by Jo-Ann Holden from P6 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #1, #1B, Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd , #7 [22.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: waxless skis
P6=>Fortune=>Ridge=>detour to Etienne Brule=>1B=>a bit of trail 9=>=>1B=>=>Champlain Lookout=>Parkway=>detour down to bottom of trail 7.

Of course the park web site indicated that nothing was groomed, but I am no longer paying attention to it - it is worse than useless for planning purposes. I lucked out though! From P6 conditions were quite nice. Today my waxless classic started to work (they like it above plus 3) and most of where I skied had been groomed recently enough that the snow was fairly firm, at least for the first couple of hours. The best skiing for my skis was out of the tracks in the skate lane where the grooming was freshest. The conditions were even better for skating.

The Champlain Parkway was quite nice. Ridge was a bit stale but fine, 1B was lovely, 9 was tempting but I was running out of food and energy, the lookout was dreary with pavement showing, trail 7 was as nice as 1B.

I was a bit surprised to see the groomer at 9:40. It didn't actually make a great difference to the skiing as it was already quite warm out. Tomorrow morning, however, it will be crucial to have a thorough and very early grooming and tracksetting while the temperatures are cold. I can only ski early tomorrow and will be really disappointed if they decide to groom late or not at all.

By the way, there is still a LOT of snow.
130329_Grand-Central.jpgEnlargeImage
Groomer-March-29-2013.jpgEnlargeImage
Mar 29 (2013-03-29) by Paul Jaenicke from P7 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1, #30, #8, #17, #31, #11 [19.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Shortly after noon there was still lots of parking left in P7. My route was P7=>#30=>#8=>#11=>#17=>#1=>#8=#17=>#31=>#30=>P7. Its a question of days before the backcountry trails become more hazardous, although still skiable, small creeks, ditches are starting to open up, a few rocks are starting to show.

It was the first time I decided to ski #8 from P7, usually I ski it from Ridge road coming back to P7. The first part close to the house in the woods had a few ditches opening up, see my first 2 pictures, but the worst was some idiot had decided to go for a hike and as you can see in the third pic had made quite large deep boot marks on the trail, this continued all the way up the first hill, after that he must of gave up and turned around.

I skied a short part of Trail #11 (merry go round) the only part that didnt suffer any tree damage, between the intersection with #17 up to #8. When I arrived on Ridge was surprised to see they had Groomed it, as with #30 also.

I also agree with Ron, the NCC website needs a makeover, there seems to be a big time lapse from when the Groomers report goes back to the visitor centre, For example a trail could of been groomed at 12 and wont be reported until after 3 pm. On top of that they have a separate Classic and Skating trail reporting , but most of the trails are duplicated on both sections.

Hopefully with tonight's cold temperatures there will be some grooming overnight or early tomorrow morning.
IMG_2172.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2173.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2174.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2176.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2178.JPGEnlargeImage
Mar 29 (2013-03-29) by David Brownrigg from P17 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #51, #53 [13.4km], Glide Wax: N/A, Grip Wax: Vhauti Universal Klister -2 to +4
Arrived at P17 to, surprise...fresh grooming! Both #53 and #51...albeit just one classic lane on the right side of the trail and of course a skate lane. Yesterday's choice of Universal klister worked much better today. Wooded trails are starting to get dirty especially under the fir trees. Trail 51 is starting to recede mostly in the open stretch just before Lac Phillipe. During my tour of 51 a snowmobile wizzed by destroying the newly groomed skate lane (what the heck!) and then I found out what he was up to on my return trip. Trail 51 is now officially closed...see pic below. It's still mostly skiable so if that's one of your favourites get out before Sunday's rains...
P1030991.JPGEnlargeImage
P1030996.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040001.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040009.JPGEnlargeImage
Mar 29 (2013-03-29) by Ron Lorenson from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: Swix LF12 with rilling, Grip Wax: n/a
Did a few back-and-forth skating trips on the Doldrums. Conditions were slippery putty - soft but with reasonable glide. The skis tended to sink in but there was very little drag to the snow. The classic tracks looked quite firm and good - in fact with the right wax and texture classic might be the best option. Hors piste the snow is quite soft and wet - skis would sink in quite a bit and might not even be supported - a real skier would not have a good day of bushwacking.

Tomorrow, with the overnight low temperatures, if the trails are trackset conditions should be spectacular.

Comment:
I've maintained that, in spite of its deficiencies, the NCC site is of benefit in that it reports what trails have been trackset. It no longer even achieves that: at this moment it reports that a number of trails have not been trackset for six days in spite of the fact that these trails have had recent tracksetting. The NCC should either give up entirely on the "trail conditions " site or expend the effort in making into something of value to the skiing public. As it exists currently it is of no value.
Mar 29 (2013-03-29) by Garry Tarr from P9 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, North Loop, #1 [17km], Glide Wax: CH8 plus rilling, Grip Wax:
P10 was full at 9AM, so I started from P9. I did a warm-up lap of the Doldrums, then proceeded across the Connector, up the Fortune Parkway, east on Ridge to to the top of Penguin Hill, back along Ridge to Huron, out on to the Champlain Parkway to the lookout, then back to P9 via Ridge and the Fortune Parkway. Conditions could have been excellent if there had been more grooming, but I can only rate them as fair to good. The Doldrums were completely ungroomed, and were quite bumpy. The snow surface alternated between icy in the shade and wet in the sunnier sections. There was some evidence of grooming on the FP, although the snow was still lumpy on the sunny stretches. In the shade the snow was still quite flat and fast, making for pleasant skating. Ridge was also ungroomed, but the surface was fairly flat and the skiing quite good. In some sections the snow was quite badly contaminated with pine sap and needles. As usual on a warm day my skis picked some of this up and became noticeably slower as the day progressed. On the Champlain Parkway I found evidence of fresh grooming- and the best skiing so far- then I finally met a small groomer heading west on Ridge Road near Huron. Skating was great on the freshly groomed surface. I'm not sure how much more grooming there will be this afternoon. P7 might be a good starting point, and I would definitely avoid the Doldrums. If there is grooming overnight there could be excellent spring skiing tomorrow morning. There is still lots of snow in most places, although pavement is now visible through the snow on the exposed parkway between the Huron and Champlain lookouts. The snow surface is starting to transform into a granular texture.
Mar 28 (2013-03-28) by Andy Jonyas from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, North Loop [7.4km], Glide Wax: Unknown, Grip Wax:
Its been so slow lately, I hardly wanted to go, however, today was marginally better. Last few days my skate skis sank into the snow, straining my knee ligaments. This time it seems we are getting down to the hard base. Definatley not as fast as mid winter, but pleasant. Noticeably very few people at 4pm. Almost an eerie feel up there, total silence.
Mar 28 (2013-03-28) by David Brownrigg from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, #30, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #4, #14, #31 [11.8km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Vauhti Universal Klister
skied the trails in the P7 area (4, 14, 30, 31) including ridge rd to the FP. No new grooming and the classic tracks are starting to fade. Universal klister worked for a while then things got slow and sluggish as the temps climbed towards noon. Nice mild day for a ski though. Hopefully Demsis will do some grooming this long weekend..
Mar 27 (2013-03-27) by Megan McTavish from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 (blue) [14.7km], Glide Wax: vauhti hf yellow, Grip Wax: vauhti fluor universal
Beautiful day out there! The parkways from P10 to Champlain were fully re-groomed this morning. It looked like P8-P9 were done too. Ridge Rd. was not done though and neither was Champlain parkway towards Black's. The groomed parts were definitely nicer (more consistent) than the ungroomed (a bit icy in some places and slow in others) but both are skiable at least later when the sun warmed it up.
I didn't classic, but I would assume it is universal klister weather.
Enjoy!
Mar 26 (2013-03-26) by Ron Lorenson from P9 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: Swix LF8, Grip Wax: Roode universal klister
Skated the doldrums with my wife who was doing classic.

Initially the skating track was rutted and varied from soft to glazed; around noon the tracksetter did the skating track which improved it to a uniform soft surface with reasonable glide. The snow is not yet granular being mostly soft wet powder (think putty): this PM a warm wax would be required and rilling wouldn't hurt.

The classic tracks have not been done recently but were quite firm and in good condition. Universal klister worked quite well for grip.

It's not yet crust-cruising conditions. Out of the track the snow was firm but soft on top so that the skis sunk in about 5 cm. A real skier equipped with back-country waxless skis would probably have a slow but enjoyable day of bushwacking.
Mar 24 (2013-03-24) by Jo-Ann Holden from P19 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #54 (green), #55 (green - shared), #55 (green - alternative), #55 (blue - alternative) [25.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
P19-Lusk Lake, back to 50, up and down 55 blue.
Conditions were springy today. Since I had a long skate yesterday I needed to switch gears and rest my leg, so classic was the only option - but it would have been much better for skating. The early fresh grooming on the Lusk trail was still fairly hard - and my wax even worked. (VR60) It was delightful to see Lusk again - first time in 2 years! By 10:30 I upgraded to VR75, but the sunny conditions were wreaking havoc with both glide and grip on trail 50 - so I decided to backtrack and try a little bit of 55 in the woods, just to check out the first stretch to kill time while Garry skated on to Herridge. The wax worked quite well in the woods, at least for most of the time, and I ended up continuing on to Taylor Lake and sat for a while on a picnic table in the warm weather before heading back down through the woods. These were two trails I have wanted to do all year, so it was a good day!
Mar 24 (2013-03-24) by Florence Lehmann from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #1B, #2 (blue), #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #3, #9, #24, #33, #40 [24.3km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Last pics.
Shallow_tracks.jpgEnlargeImage
Trail_2_black.jpgEnlargeImage
Off_1b.jpgEnlargeImage
Trail_9(3).jpgEnlargeImage
Other_end_of_33.jpgEnlargeImage
Mar 24 (2013-03-24) by Florence Lehmann from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #1B, #2 (blue), #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #3, #9, #24, #33, #40 [24.3km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Other pics.
Trail_9.jpgEnlargeImage
Trail_9(2).jpgEnlargeImage
Trail_21(2).jpgEnlargeImage
Trail_21(2).jpgEnlargeImage
Other_end_of_33.jpgEnlargeImage
Mar 24 (2013-03-24) by Florence Lehmann from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #3, #9, #24, #33, #40 [23.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Pics from today's ski
Start_of_40.jpgEnlargeImage
Split_2_and_40.jpgEnlargeImage
Trail_33.jpgEnlargeImage
Trail_24.jpgEnlargeImage
Trail_24(2).jpgEnlargeImage
Mar 24 (2013-03-24) by Matt McInnes from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , #1 Penguin Climb, #1, #4, Camp Fortune Race Course [16.3km], Glide Wax: HF8, Grip Wax:
Fresh grooming on the Gatineau parkway this morning. Ridge road/ penguin and number 4 also groomed. The 'upper' race trails were not groomed but the lower shooting range section was. Champlain parkway had not been groomed as of about 7am. Great skiing. As many have said the conditions were variable and likely got hairier as the day went on. However this weekend was two of the best skiis of the year! Enjoy.
Mar 24 (2013-03-24) by Florence Lehmann from P12 grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #3, #9, #24, #40 [22.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
P12->40->left on 24->1->1b->9->3->1 to Huron->FP->1->2->40
Fabulous day for skiing. Sunny, lots of snow on all the trails I skied, including on #9 (and #21 from what I could see when I skied past it). Snow condition was variable. Tracks were icy all the way to 24. After that, it was a mix of slow in sunny areas and icy in the shade. Tracks were shallower in some areas once I hit 24. Down #2 and #40 was a blast--both had been snowplowed but surface was even.
Grip wax was tricky with changing conditions, but overall very enjoyable. Skate skiing looked like it would have been great.
Other than that, #33 seemed in good condition when I went past it. And I was delighted to see there's lots of snow on backcountry trails. (#20 looked like it hasn't been skied on in a long time.)
I'd recommend all the trails I skied on.
Will post pictures later.
Mar 24 (2013-03-24) by Garry Tarr from P19 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #54 (green), #55 (green - shared) [20.9km], Glide Wax: CH8 plus rilling, Grip Wax:
Skate ski from the Lac Philippe parking lot along 50, up 54 to Lusk cabin, back down and along 55 green to the Taylor Lake yurt, then back to 50 and on east to Herridge, returning to P19 via 50. As I had guessed 50, 54 and 55 were all freshly groomed last night. At 9AM the snow was still cold and skating was remarkably fast. The climb up to Lusk cabin was almost effortless on near-perfect grooming. This was my first trip to Lusk this year, and I was pleased to see all the washouts and debris from last year had been cleared away. By 10AM the sun was starting to soften exposed sections, and the skis began to give that distinctive spring hiss. Skating remained reasonably easy, particularly in the shade of the pine trees along the shore of Lac Philippe. However, I found suction made the tracks pathetically slow on the downhills, and I stayed out in the skate lane. Overall it was a great ski, and conditions should still be quite good for anyone heading out this afternoon (but I would suggest picking a shady route).
Mar 24 (2013-03-24) by Karl Saidla from P17 grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #51, #52, #53 [35.1km], Glide Wax: Vauhti HF Silver or LF Yellow, Grip Wax: Vauhti Universal Klister with some Vauhti Silver Plus Klister
We skied classic from P17 out the 51/53 to P19, and then back via the 50 and 52. Very nice day in general once again. The snow is extremely variable. In some places it remains fairly dry and powdery despite the warm temperatures. In others, it can be more slushy. We advise klister but keep it thin and bring some warm hard wax with you as well. Grooming wise,51, 52 and 53 had not been groomed overnight, making the conditions a bit inconsistent given the above zero temperatures yesterday. On 52, a snowmobile appears to have wiped out one of the two sets of classic tracks, but the other side was fine. That being said, these trails were all still reasonably good overall.. The 50 was in terrific shape for either classic or skate.
Mar 23 (2013-03-23) by Paul Jaenicke from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: #6, #30, #22, #34 [8.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Skied out from P7, shortly after 10 already an overflow into the next parking across the street. My route was from P7=>#30=>#6=>#22=>#34=>#6=>#30=>P7.

Although #22 and #34 have not been officially cleared, there are skier tracks on them, #22 has a lot of detours on it not the greatest but still skiable. Trail #34 much better with the exception of the bottom part of the trail where it meets #4, the are a couple of fallen trees on the last hill.

Trail #6 Skyline is still quite nice, although on most of the big hills they have a groomed track in the middle, which makes it awkward to descend on.

With the imminent warm sun and temperatures and freeze at night these smaller backcountry trails will get difficult to ski on especially in the morning. I wanted to stop and have lunch at the bench on Skyline #6 but the snow completely covered the bench, so like karl mentioned the snow is steel quite deep.

It is quite possible for a mid April ski this year!!!!
Mar 23 (2013-03-23) by Karl Saidla from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #30, Camp Fortune Race Course [17.6km], Glide Wax: Vauhti HF Silver., Grip Wax: This is a guess: Vauhti K12.
Of course, it's a great day for skiing with mild temperatures and piles of snow. We skated from P7 along Ridge Road to the Keogan/Fortune Parkway junction and also skied on the racing trails at Fortune. By and large, things are in good shape. The snow is in transition from dry to wet, so things are a bit glazy here and there but it is not quite klister time yet if you are classic skiing. The racing trails were groomed for both skate and classic.
Mar 23 (2013-03-23) by Garry Tarr from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #3 [15.9km], Glide Wax: CH7, Grip Wax:
A skate ski from P10 up the FP to Ridge, west to Burma, down Burma to FP, then back up to Ridge, east on Ridge to the top of Penguin Hill, then back via Ridge and the FP. I found amazingly powdery, cold winter snow which was only starting to soften a little by the end of my ski. There was precious little evidence of grooming, although the NCC website claims the FP was groomed at dawn. That said, the skating was excellent everywhere, with a smooth surface and enough "give" for easy edging. You could feel just a little of the hard base on the final downhill on Burma, but control was great. The main problem was dodging snow bombs falling from the pine trees! When I left at 9AM P10 was nearly full but there were not too many skiers on the trails. By 11AM the hordes had arrived and were clogging the FP.

For those skiing this afternoon, I expect conditions will still be powdery but with a somewhat wet surface, particularly in the sun. A softer glide wax and rilling would help, but it probably won't be fast. Since there was hardly any grooming last night my hunch is there will be grooming everywhere tonight, which could make for fantastic skiing in the early morning. The unpacked snow at Chelsea is still knee deep, suggesting the season could go on for weeks yet.
Mar 22 (2013-03-22) by Andy Jonyas from P6 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd [11.4km], Glide Wax: N/A, Grip Wax: waxless
Great day, fresh grooming, a little slow but still heavenly.Looks like mid winter. March has not been cruel this year. I predict a last ski on April 15.
Mar 22 (2013-03-22) by Matt McInnes from P16 grooming 
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: HF8, Grip Wax:
Beautiful ski from P16 last night. No grooming but the fresh snow on a hard base was very nice. Classic tracks were in good shape too. Great to see the parking lot nearly full on a random weeknight! Enjoy.
Mar 22 (2013-03-22) by Megan McTavish from Old Chelsea grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, North Loop, #1 Penguin Climb, #1, #1 (black - Chelsea), #3 [26.7km], Glide Wax: vauhti lf blue or violet, Grip Wax: vauhti carrot but bring K-15 (purple) and K-12 (silver) as it warms up
Beautiful day and great skiing. The grooming was great where it had been done. I saw new grooming on the parkways (but not P8-P9) and Burma (#3). Ridge Rd. was not groomed, but I imagine it will be at some point. It is still in ok shape though. Something was done to Penguin, but it wasn't a normal grooming job so a bit bumpy and the classic tracks were untouched. #1 between Old Chelsea and Penguin had been walked on and is very bumpy.
It felt like mid-winter skiing and (especially on Burma) was a super nice ski!
Mar 21 (2013-03-21) by Jo-Ann Holden from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #3 [15.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
A very nice ski from P10, up Ridge to Huron, a detour to Etienne Brule, and then back on Burma. It was just like Megan and David reported - snow was falling, no new grooming, and it felt like mid February, great to be out. Burma was a treat as it's only the second time this year I've had a chance to ski it. The last hill was just starting to get a bit bob-sleddy and the classic tracks were sometime there, sometimes not, but it really didn't matter.
Mar 21 (2013-03-21) by David Brownrigg from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, #30, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #31 [10.5km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Blue Extra
Skied out from P7 using #30 and Ridge Road to Shilly Shally. Amazing January/February like conditions and this is late March! Last year on this day the season was done with not a stitch of snow anywhere! Even skied a black diamond trail for the first time there's so much snow. No fresh grooming anywhere along my route but no big deal...just happy to have winter stick around a little longer this year...
Mar 21 (2013-03-21) by Megan McTavish from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [21km], Glide Wax: vauhti lf blue, Grip Wax: vauhti carrot
Another nice morning for a ski. There was a blanket of fresh snow covering everything and no new grooming when we were out, but the snow was light and fluffy so the skiing was still nice both in and out of the tracks.
Mar 20 (2013-03-20) by Ken Trischuk from P7 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, #30, #4, #8, #14 [12.6km], Glide Wax: Vauhti blue, Grip Wax: Vauhti carrot
What a treat to get out and ski some beautiful mid-winter snow, after work, in full daylight! I did a loop out of P7 skiing along Ridge and down into the Fortune lodge area before climbing up onto 8 for a fun trip back to the lot. The main trails had all been nicely groomed and the BC trails were skied in but still in great shape. My grip wax was a little cold for the conditions but worked reasonably well as did the glide. The backcountry trails were showing a little sign of thaw/refreezing making them a wee bit choppy - but as Don suggested... you could simply step out into the fresh powder and make your own line. Get out there while its still this good as the warm weekend will bring us back to (great but different) spring conditions pretty quickly.
Mar 20 (2013-03-20) by Megan McTavish from Old Chelsea grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd , #7, #15 (black) [24.9km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF Violet, Grip Wax: Vauhti K-12 (Silver)
Happy Spring! Great skiing today on both the un-groomed and groomed trails. I skied on both and my k-12 wax job worked well. The parkways, 15 and 7 were all freshly groomed. It is a bit on the soft side and looks great for both classic and skating. Enjoy it while it lasts!
Mar 20 (2013-03-20) by Don Fugler from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: #1 Penguin Climb, #6 [4.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
I skied Skyline today. In a word - perfect. It is a rare and beautiful experience to have the tracks set only by skiers: two narrow tracks on the flats and widening on the slopes, due to climbers and snowplow descents. If you built up too much speed on a hill, you could simply step off into the powder to slow down. I noticed that the bench at the viewpoint is buried completely. It looks like we might have many days of skiing ahead of us.
Mar 20 (2013-03-20) by Matt McInnes from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [1.4km], Glide Wax: Green, Grip Wax:
Stellar day. Groomers out in force. They had groomed P8 to the Split (at least). There were also tracks going up towards Penguin. P8-9 was just getting groomed as we arrived. Rivalling the best days of the year. Call in sick and get out there!
Mar 19 (2013-03-19) by Paul Jaenicke from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: #30, #8, #17 [8.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Lots of fresh snow , skied out of P7=>#30=>#17=>#8=#30=>P7. With these conditions wanted to try out a few of the smaller backcountry trails, what a joy to ski them today.

I only met 5 skiers on both trail #17 & #8, trail #30 had been groomed earlier in the day, not sure about Ridge probably was also done earlier. We are really getting a bonus for mid winter conditions, I thought I had skied the last time on theses trails, maybe get a couple more days out of them before it warms up on the weekend.
Mar 19 (2013-03-19) by Megan McTavish from N/A grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [1.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Its snowing! Hard to believe its the end of official winter. The team skied at Nakkertok this morning so we can't tell you what's going on in the park. It might be a fun day to check out the backcountry trails. Go to the NCC grooming report to see what they are up to.
Mar 18 (2013-03-18) by Ron Lorenson from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: Swix LF7, Grip Wax:
A Doldrums report.

Skated the North Loop and spent a happy 45 minutes crust-cruising the marsh/fen between the North Loop and the Meech Lake Road. There has been no tracksetting with the result that conditions are hard and fast but with a thin powder surface there's enough for control and grip. In the skating track the ruts from yesterday sometimes try to take control of the skis but with concentration things are reasonably good. The classic tracks are in good shape but are hard and fast. Being the Doldrums there's nothing heroic.

The best part is the marsh. There's about 5 cm of powder snow on top of a very firm base which makes for almost perfect crust-cruising. Look for the ski tracks down to the fen about 50 m before the bench and follow them down for the best skiing you're likely to have today. There's a lot more to the fen than appears to be the case from the parkway - depending on ice conditions on the creek you can go almost from P9 to P8. Get down there and cruise and explore.
Mar 18 (2013-03-18) by Matt McInnes from P3 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #26, #29 (alternative) [19km], Glide Wax: Green, Grip Wax:
Very cold morning. Track was very hard and icy in spots. Not a great ski but not terrible either.
Mar 17 (2013-03-17) by Paul Jaenicke from P19 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #50, #51, #54 (green), #55 (green - shared), #55 (green - alternative), #55 (blue - alternative), #54 (black) [33.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Skied out of lac Philippe area today my route was from P19=>#50=>#54 Black=>#54 Green=>Lusk Cabin=>#54 Green=> #55=>#51=>P19.

Another beautiful mid winter day with few skiers around, decided on a Lusk lake loop and Taylor lake loop via Philippe lake. Apparently while talking to a patroller one of the groomers broke again yesterday which explains the unusual tracks coming out of P19 to the intersection of #55, one side is not so good while the other side is near perfect, I posted 2 pics to show evidence of that.

According to the website Trail #54 BLACK is listed as thumbs up, well I am giving it 3 thumbs down. I posted one pic, luckily I skied it from the end of lac Philippe where you mostly go uphill. It has really suffered from the storm of december, many trees and branches down, they did there best to clear it up, but its a mess.

Also there are many ditches opening up, some rocks showing and the first part of this trail is also shared by snowshoers and hikers so you can imagine the boot marks. Only one skier had been on it before myself.

Trail #55 was in good shape even around Taylor lake and down the big hill past the yurt was enjoyable. Also the less frequented part of trail #51 was good right to P19. We should be good for a few more days of fast skiing before it warms up by the end of the coming week.
IMG_2153.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2154.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2155.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2157.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2160.JPGEnlargeImage
Mar 17 (2013-03-17) by Peter Beisel from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , #1 Penguin Climb, Champlain Pkwy [11.1km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF Blue, Grip Wax:
Beautiful day and excellent grooming, we had an excellent skate ski. Conditions are fast but not ovepacked!
Mar 17 (2013-03-17) by Matt McInnes from N/A grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #1B, #3, #4, #14, Camp Fortune Race Course, #1 (blue) [21km], Glide Wax: Blue (should have been green), Grip Wax:
Started at the base of fortune at the race trails. Good skiing this morning especially where it was groomed. The race trails were best. Burma and parts of ridge were quite hard and icy. Lots of good crust skiing on the ponds-- even skied across Fortune lake. Yesterday was quite a bit better as everything was freshly groomed and conditions were softer. Mid-winter conditions out there with no end in sight so can't complain!
Mar 16 (2013-03-16) by Jo-Ann Holden from P17 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #51, #53, #55 (green - alternative) [31.8km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Garry and I were hoping that Paul had filed a report, as we did meet him as we were setting out. Mine is going to be a bit negative, sorry about that. Paul did use the word "crunchy" when we were speaking with him. He had skied a loop of 51 and 53.

Garry agreed to go classic - 5th time this year, a record. We had fantastic winter weather, beautiful scenery and a memorable, if exhausting ski. Everything was groomed and had hardened thoroughly. Some of the tracks were excellent, many were very thin, wiggly and icy. The grip wax worked well in some spots and not at all in others. Conditions were somewhat icier on the north side of 51 than they had been on 53, so we gave up our plan to ski all of the wooded area of 55 - it was just taking too long without reliable grip. Trail 50 was in generally poor condition, both for skating (very hard, and marked with snowmobile tracks) and classic. In fact, the classic lane completely disappeared on the last downhill.
Mar 16 (2013-03-16) by Ron Lorenson from P9 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #1 (blue) [23.8km], Glide Wax: Swix LF7, Grip Wax: Swix Blue (V30) over blue klister
Andy's certainly right: such good conditions; so few skiers. After gossip corner I saw very few skiers until I started to meet the P12 gang coming up MacDonald.

I went classic from P9 to Blanchet via the Doldrums, #32, FP, CP, and #1. It was a delightful return to February conditions. The new snow worked nicely into the frozen spring base. Conditions were hard, but not heroic, with enough of a powder covering to give grip in the tracks and control in the skating track.

It was something that is rarely seen - perfect conditions for skating, classic, and bushwacking (hors piste). The bushwacking would be exceptional with 5 cm of new snow on top of a base that is hard enough to walk on. And, best yet crust-cruising!
Mar 16 (2013-03-16) by Andy Jonyas from P6 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd , #1 (green) (#2 - #24) [10.9km], Glide Wax: N/A, Grip Wax: waxless
Was there a nuclear war and we missed it? Perfect conditions this am, but noticeably very few people. Parking lots only partially filled. Great skiing, all of it unused from 0830 until 10am. We didn't think it was that cold.
Mar 15 (2013-03-15) by David Brownrigg from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #27, #26, #29 (alternative), #29 (shared) [9.4km], Glide Wax: swix universal, Grip Wax: swix blue
Skied out from Asticou (P1) in a soft snow fall. I suspect the tracks had been groomed earlier but it was hard to tell as there was at least 2 or 3 cms of fresh snow on the ground by about 10:30/11:00 AM. Blue grip wax worked surprisingly well considering the mild temps and the fluffy snow. Nice to see fresh snow this late in the season..
Mar 15 (2013-03-15) by Jo-Ann Holden from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #3 [15.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: Carrot
A delightful ski, it more than made up for the last two. Snow was falling, wax worked like a charm, and the classic tracks were the correct shape today, although with the fresh snow it didn't matter much whether you skied in them or out of them. It felt like mid-winter! Other years I've skied Burma every second day or so, but this year it was actually only my first time skiing it (!!!!) The only thing that would (possibly) have improved today's outing, might have been to skate Burma. Such a beautiful trail, it was tempting to go back up again just to come down a second time. Lots of happy skiers were out. Pictures will be posted this evening on musicianonskis.
Mar 15 (2013-03-15) by Karl Saidla from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: Vauhti Blue, Grip Wax: Vauhti Violet Klister mixed with Vauhti Universal Klister.
Very good conditions again on the parkways in teh vicinity of P8. Groomed over night. Moderately firm granular snow. Quite fast and the tracks appear reasonably hard. Some people call this hero snow...so get to the phone booth Clarke....
Mar 14 (2013-03-14) by Paul Jaenicke from P2 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #27, #26, #29 (shared) [19.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Skied around the Relais plein Air today , why is it that only part of the park has been groomed today? With the cold temperatures last night everything should have bee groomed.

The best skiing was on Gatineau parkway, trail #5, #27, #29 were fair at best. Trail #26 was AWFUL the middle had frozen boot marks all over making it NOT skiable, unless you stayed in the tracks. I can understand not grooming when temperatures are above zero but today no excuses for that.

Unless they get out there in the morning it will not be pleasant to ski on bumpy and crusty trails!!!!!
Mar 14 (2013-03-14) by Jo-Ann Holden from P6 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: MacKenzie-King Rd [0.8km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
I need a new pastime. These conditions make me wonder why I even go out.
I headed out to P11 seeing as they has groomed it "1 hour" ago. It was too hard and fast for me to enjoy and had obviously been groomed quite a bit earlier. I had visions of dying alone on a too-fast downhill and a hiker or nude bather finding my bleached remains in May. Then I headed to P10, where some sort of shallow grooming had been done to the skate lane, but nothing recent to the classic tracks (yeah it would be great to be able to skate on this stuff, but I can't, so perhaps Demsis should issue separate classic and skate passes? Are we second class citizens?). They were icy and bumpy, and I just didn't feel like having one of those kinds of skis today. THEN I headed to P6. I skied down trail 7 (whee fast) and then onto the connector trail. It all looked beautiful, just like slippery, hard-frozen styrofoam. After 400 meters I had no grip whatsoever as I had completely forgotten to put on a bomb-proof binder before I left home. All that gas and I didn't ski more than 3 k. Anyway, it was all too icy and hard for me to really enjoy. To top it all off the weather wasn't really pleasant. It felt much colder than it was (minus 7) with a raw wind. I'm waiting for spring to return.
Mar 14 (2013-03-14) by Sheila Kealey from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , #1 Penguin Climb [3km], Glide Wax: Vauhti blue, Grip Wax:
Excellent skiing this morning from P8 - nicely groomed for both classic and skate. Conditions were fast but not icy. Incredible conditions for mid March!
Mar 14 (2013-03-14) by Ron Lorenson from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: Swix LF7, Grip Wax:
I made an skating attempt at the North Loop. The groomed surface from yesterday has frozen in place and is covered with a dusting of snow which was not sufficient to fill in the ruts from yesterday. It's doable but not enjoyable. The new snow has blown into the classic tracks meaning that they would be all grip with no glide.
Mar 13 (2013-03-13) by Jo-Ann Holden from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [1.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: Swix yellow
Snow Squalls! I didn't have the will power to carry on with the unpredictable conditions. It may have been groomed earlier, I suspect it was was, however a dusting of powder slowed everything down to a crawl. Perversely the tracks had either no grip (if previously skied on) or too much. My waxless would not have worked AT ALL, and neither would klister. The skate lane was marginally more predictable than the classic tracks but discouraging. I thought of climbing Penguin, but descending the first hill was like trying to drive with the gas and the brake on simultaneously. I went home and had a short run instead, while another dramatic snow squall raged.
Mar 13 (2013-03-13) by Andy Jonyas from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [6.5km], Glide Wax: unknown, Grip Wax:
Snow today: Dough. Straight from the mixer,kinda sticks to your hands. Slow. We went on a short run, but were stopping every 100 meters or so. The rain snow mix over the last few days needs to freeze and get churned up. Classic tracks were icy, the parkways pulled on your knees a bit on the way down.
Mar 13 (2013-03-13) by Megan McTavish from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 [13.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: mix of violet and universal vauhti klister over a base klister
Great skiing this morning! The groomers were out on the parkways and Ridge Road (#1) while we were out there. Where it is groomed the snow is sugary and fast. Don't bother going where it hasn't been groomed until it warms up. Karl and I tested the new K-line vauhti klisters this morning and they were really good (K-base covered with K-violet).
Mar 11 (2013-03-11) by Jo-Ann Holden from P6 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #7 [5.2km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: waxless skis
After dithering and waiting for the heavy rain to pass by, I finally checked the radar and realized it was going to miss the park, and so I headed out the door only after 4:00. It was certainly a gloomy day, but turned out to be a very enjoyable ski. Conditions were fairly slow, but yesterday's grooming was firm enough, and today my waxless skis did quite a good job with both grip and glide. I didn't quite have to double pole down the Black Lake Hill!

There was one other car in P6 when I set out, and the only other 2 skiers I met in the first 2 hours were at the T intersection of the Fortune Parkway. It was my kind of outing. The woodpeckers were rattling away, and it was warm enough to stop to take time to look around. I sat for at least 15 minutes at the T, without a hat or gloves - how nice is that?!

The most memorable moment of the outing was at Kingsmere. Dave McMahon's ski group suddenly appeared and flashed by me in their colourful racing suits. Having experienced an ultra-solitary ski in the monochrome gloom , it reminded me of the moment in the Wizard of Oz - when everything switches to "Technicolor".
Gloom-on-the-Champlain-Parkway.jpgEnlargeImage
Mar 11 (2013-03-11) by David Brownrigg from P2 grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #27, #15 (blue) [11km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Universal Klister
skied out from the Relais Centre along the GP to past the CP intersection and came back via #15 and #5. Universal klister worked ok with a bit of slip here and there. No fresh grooming and tracks were a bit faded especially along # 5 between the end of 15 and the GP. Skiing trended to be slow and the tracks sank a bit but all in all not a bad ski for mid March. Got back to P2 just in time as it started to rain...
Mar 10 (2013-03-10) by Ingrid Hagberg from P6 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd , #5 (green), #29 (shared) [14.8km], Glide Wax: Vauhti Blue, Grip Wax:
Another great day of skiing! We started off early in the morning when things were nice and firm. There were fresh tracks and grooming on all the trails we skied. Things started to soften mid-morning as the sun came out and temperatures rose.
Mar 10 (2013-03-10) by Garry Tarr from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, North Loop, #1, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #3 [22.5km], Glide Wax: CH8 plus rilling, Grip Wax:
Skate ski from P8 along the Doldrums, across the Connector, up the Fortune Parkway, then west on Ridge Road and 1B to the Blanchet trail, return via Burma. Skiing wasn't fast, but was quite enjoyable on a snow base that is not yet granular but is getting a bit wet. The best and fastest skiing was on the shadier sections of Ridge Road. There had been grooming all along the route, but by noon almost all traces of grooming had been flattened by skier traffic. Still, the surface was quite flat and the skiing easily controllable. The lack of sun made for uniform glide. The final descent on Burma was a delight, fast enough but with no need to snowplow. There were surprisingly few skiers out for a relatively nice Sunday afternoon. I doubt conditions will change much over the rest of the day, so if you have time get out and take advantage of the first Daylight Saving Time evening of 2013. Some rilling of the ski bases is a good idea.
Mar 9 (2013-03-09) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #33, #40 [9.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Beautiful spring skiing day out there, nice afternoon to take a leisurely ski and start enjoying the benches again. I skied around the trails from P12, #40, #33, #24, #2, #1 all nicely groomed this morning, but like Ken mentioned variable conditions from shaded areas to sunny spots. You can be going down a hill and suddenly you are held back as you hit a slushy section.

I managed to find my favourite bench on #2 the only problem was I had to sit on the back rest, as you can see in my picture the snow is very deep there, which is a good sign.

As I predicted earlier last week the WALKERS are coming out of hibernation, boot marks are starting to appear here and there. I was surprised as I was leaving , a car pulled up in the parking lot, 2 walkers and a dog got out and to my surprise they actually acknowledged the 2 signs posted of no Walking and no dogs and turned around and left.

This is the time of the year where it is tricky to pick a time to ski, too early its icy, hard unless Groomed, and too late its soft, slushy. Sunny and just above zero seems to be a good compromise for decent skiing.
Mar9.JPGEnlargeImage
Mar 9 (2013-03-09) by Ken Trischuk from P6 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, North Loop, #1 Penguin Climb, #32, Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd , #1 (black - Chelsea) [24.6km], Glide Wax: Vauhti purple, Grip Wax:
Beautiful day for some spring skiing - and certainbly lots of people out enjoying it! I did a loop of the parkway and everything I saw off to the side was freshly groomed as well. Added a climb and descent of Penguin and 1 "black" down to Old Chelsea as well which was nicely groomed (save for a few boot prints from walkers...). I probably timed my ski a hair late today as things were softening in the sun as I started and were a little slushy by the time I finished. In the shade things stayed fast though so one had to be careful of sudden speed changes as you skied from shade to sun. One such rapid speed transition almost sent me face first coming down Black lake hill.

Sunshime was certainly greatly appreciated too... I should have spent a little more time doing a little "warm rock sitting" - perhaps tomorrow if I can get the timing right with the clock changes (does the snow care that we "spring forward" an hour tonight? probably not).
Mar 8 (2013-03-08) by Megan McTavish from Old Chelsea grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Fortune Pkwy, North Loop, #1 Penguin Climb, #1, #1 (black - Chelsea) [19.4km], Glide Wax: vauhti hf yellow, Grip Wax: vauhti K-Gold Universal klister with a couple of drops of vauhti red klister mixed in
Beautiful day for a ski! Definitely feels like spring. There was fresh grooming everywhere I went and the conditions ranged from wet, to relatively dry to icy. Universal klister is where its at today! I tried the new K-Gold Universal by Vauhti and I added a bit of red (only about 8 drops) and was very impressed with the versatility (both good grip and glide in most places).
Mar 7 (2013-03-07) by Jo-Ann Holden from P2 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #29 (shared) [1.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
3 Stars, but I would have preferred the designation of \"POOR\" rather than \"FAIR\". Today I chose the Relais as a nice flat area to to teach a group of beginner level adult skate skiers (all new to skating, but seasoned classic skiers). Temperatures were hovering around zero, but the trails were groomed \"2 hours \" before I left home so I was expecting some beautiful conditions. Only one section of 29 was groomed, the choice section parallel to the forest was stale, hard and unusable for our purposes. On the groomed section, I was disgusted by the shoddy workmanship, and my friends were quite dismayed to be trying to learn new skills in such bumpy conditions. The famous 7 year ridge was present as well as pronounced ruts and numerous divets. The hill leading out of the field area was particularly bad (not photographed) to the extent that we opted to NOT to continue working on uphill skills. All 5 of us have ski passes. Can we not expect good grooming on week days? Is this to be the state of things for the rest of the winter - the next month can (potentially) provide some of the best skiing of the year! Snow depth is considerable, and, snow permitting, the season does not end until April 15, if I recall correctly. Common, get with it! With freeze up at night and soft conditions during the day this is the time of the year when regular grooming is really needed.
March-7-Grooming-2.jpgEnlargeImage
March-7-Grooming2-2.jpgEnlargeImage
Mar 7 (2013-03-07) by David Brownrigg from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #27, #26, #29 (alternative), #29 (shared) [9.4km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Red
Did the trails in the Asticou/Mont Bleu area. The only evidence of grooming was #5. The GP was only groomed for skating. Tricky wax day. Red worked ok on the groomed tracks but was useless on the non-groomed ones which were mostly icey. Klister would have been better. Nice mild weather though...
Mar 7 (2013-03-07) by Garry Tarr from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 [13.6km], Glide Wax: CH8, Grip Wax:
Skate ski up the Fortune Parkway to Ridge, west on Ridge to Huron and then the Champlain Lookout, then back via the Parkway. The trip was prompted in part by the morning NCC report which stated that the parkways had (at last) been groomed for skating. There clearly had been grooming of the skate lane, but by afternoon the Fortune Parkway was getting quite hard. This may have been the result of a large school group I saw leaving P10. Conditions were somewhat softer and more forgiving on the Champlain Parkway. Ridge Road had not been groomed and was extremely hard, making it difficult to get any edging or purchase. The classic tracks and the border of the tracks were rock hard everywhere. A classic skier in the small group I was with had to leave the tracks and ski in the skate lane on the uphills to get any purchase. Given the considerable depth of the snow base and the lack of any significant thaws to date, it is very disappointing that the main trails could not have been groomed to reasonably good conditions. Once again it seems that grooming is being reduced to a bare minimum in March. Unless there is grooming tonight, my advice to skate skiers tomorrow would be stay on the parkways and avoid Ridge Road.
Mar 7 (2013-03-07) by Matt McInnes from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Gatineau Pkwy [12.9km], Glide Wax: Swix red+ Med structure, Grip Wax:
They had freshly groomed the parkways between P8 and likely all the way down to P3 (I only went to the bottom of Pink). They had also groomed Champlain parkway but I don't know how far they had done it.

Ridge and other small trails did not seem to have been groomed. Where it was groomed was very nice. Otherwise it is pretty crusty. Good to see the groomers out as I have skied every day since Saturday and hadn't seen any evidence of grooming since Saturday.
Mar 6 (2013-03-06) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1 [11.1km], Glide Wax: LF8 pink, Grip Wax:
Skate skiing was pleasant but a little slow due to a bit of fresh humid snow on a fairly hard, ungroomed surface. Good controlled glide.
The LF8 pnk was the right choice at 10 am. I could have used a little rilling to add more structure to my skis and deal with the warmer, wetter March snow conditions.
Mar 6 (2013-03-06) by Karl Saidla from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 Penguin Climb, #1 [15.2km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF Pink, Grip Wax: NA-would probably try Vauhti Silver Plus Klister
Where I sked this morning the classic tracks appeared in reasonably good shape, with some fresh and wet snow having accumulated in some places, and also having been skied in in others. The skate lanes are on the bumpy and glazy side, but certainly not unskiable. There had not been any grooming yet this monrning on the trails I used.
Mar 5 (2013-03-05) by Jo-Ann Holden from P6 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd [8.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Long johns be gone! Spring is here! The distinctive squeak, hiss and slurp of the soft, wet snow has officially begun!
It was a short, but beautiful and peaceful ski on the parkway between Kingsmere and Black Lake. There was a layer of slow snow on top of yesterday's (I am assuming yesterday's) grooming. The skating was getting slower the longer I skied - an earlier start would have been smart - and by the end it was quite tiring. But the woodpeckers and ravens were singing in the woods and it was a great time to be out.
130305_Black-Lake-Hill.jpgEnlargeImage
Mar 4 (2013-03-04) by Ken Trischuk from P12 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, #1B, #2 (blue), #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #3, #9, #24, #33, #40, #21, #12 [32.5km], Glide Wax: Vauhti blue, Grip Wax: Vauhti carrot
Another beautiful day of skiing and perhaps the last before the warmer temperatures start us into the spring skiing season. All the main trails were freshly groomed with nice corduroy surface and perfect classic tracks. Skiing up from P12 my loop was... convoluted. I zigged and zagged trying to link together a few trails I hadn't yet managed to enjoy this season.

The main goal was to ski down Western while it was still covered in its powdery goodness. Certainly a lot of snow fell last week and it was in excellent shape. There had been a fair number of people skiing it over the weekend so it was well tracked in. Also a few body "divots"... so some folks had more fun than others. With so much snow the poles were a bit useless sinking in 4 -12" with the lightest of pressure. The wax was perfect though and trail #9 rolls along with a nice rhythm so "legs mostly" was a fine way to ski.

Once down to the parkway I looped back up on 3 to ski down 12 which was also in excellent shape. A short stop in Shilly Shally to stoke the fire and then back out Ridge to drop down 2 and the car. Excellent day out. Hopefully not too many warm days ahead and the season will go on for a few more weeks.
Mar 4 (2013-03-04) by David Brownrigg from P17 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #51, #53 [13.4km], Glide Wax: swix universal, Grip Wax: swix blue
did the #53 to Lac Philippe and back to P17 via #51 and #53. No fresh grooming but the classic conditions were for the most part excellent with a few open areas where the snow had drifted onto the tracks and a section of #51 where a snowmobile had obliterated the track. Looks like this is the last ski with cold and dry conditions for the next week or 2...get out and enjoy today if you can!
P1030855.JPGEnlargeImage
P1030853.JPGEnlargeImage
P1030852.JPGEnlargeImage
P1030851.JPGEnlargeImage
Mar 4 (2013-03-04) by Jo-Ann Holden from P2 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #27, #26, #29 (shared) [8.2km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: n/a
Skate-skied around the Relais, #5, trails 26, 27, 29 and a bit of parkway. Although the web site hadn't indicated any grooming, the forested trails were all freshly done and in top shape. The parkway was not recently done and had a small covering of dry powder. Perhaps it is futile to mention walkers, but for the record there was a LARGE group of school children tromping all over the trails.Their teacher did not seem to be aware that they were on ski trails. At least the kids were having fun outdoors! Further from the Relais, the boot tracks dwindled to just one set of adult boots.

This is just a perfect day for skiing. I'm heading out for a second ski, with classic, in a few minutes as our weather is due to warm up in a day or so. Book off sick this afternoon if you can, it's too nice to miss.
130304_Fresh-Grooming-with-Boots.jpgEnlargeImage
Mar 3 (2013-03-03) by Jo-Ann Holden from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #15 (blue), #35 [18.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: Carrot
Mostly trail 15 in both directions,with a detour to Pink Lake and the required minimum of parkway skiing to get on to the wooded trails. The snow was somewhat slow and soft, but seemed to be groomed in the last day. It was delightful to have such wintery conditions and so few people to share the trails with! Was it just the late hour, or has everyone packed it in? Mine was the last car in the lot, at 6:15. A photo is posted at http://musicianonskis.ca/blog/2013/03/march-03-2013/
Mar 3 (2013-03-03) by Matt McInnes from Old Chelsea grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #24, #4 [12.7km], Glide Wax: HF8, Grip Wax:
Very good day of skiing. No fresh grooming since Saturday morning but Ridge and other related trails are all in very good shape. They have only groomed ridge to within 2km of McKinstry so I still haven't made it there (or to the fire tower for that matter) and it is getting late in the season!
Mar 2 (2013-03-02) by Ken Trischuk from P19 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #54 (green), #55 (green - shared), #55 (green - alternative), #55 (blue - alternative), #56 [35.6km], Glide Wax: Vauhti blue, Grip Wax: Vauhti Tar (-6 to -15C)
Skied out of P19 today with excellent conditions on the trails. The main trails were in great shape with fresh grooming on 50, 54 and 55 out to Taylor lake. 55 blue and 55 "Alternative" had likely been groomed when the snow was still quite wet. The classic tracks were in good shape but it was clear the groomer had a lot of issues and floundered around leaving ruts in the center and off to the side. As I said though, the classic tracks were still in good shape so all in all a nice ski. Certainly a few signs of downed trees and branches here and there on the main trails but not as a bad as I might have expected. They were more or less cleaned up with the odd bits of sawdust or twigs to indicate where the work had been done.

When I got to Taylor lake I noticed skidoo tracks heading up 56 so I decided to follow them. No grooming sled behind it but rather just the crews heading out to clear downed branches. Skiied up to the junction and saw a lot more work had been done in here to open up the trail. The skidoo tracks turned north at the junction presumably to clear trail out to Lac Richard yurt. I opted to ski up to the lookout instead. One lone skier had broken out the track and they had done yeomans work - likely in deep, wet snow. I lumbered along as best I could on my skinny skis wading through shin to knee deep tracks (should have brought the wider boards for this!). As I got higher up the "trail" became more and more of a bushwhack. Lots of trees down up here. My "guide" had made good work of snaking through the brush and eventually I topped out but it wasn't a leisurely ski up to the lookout today. Not sure when the crews will clear this out. I would suspect it's a lower priority right now so could be a little while. Still a nice day out and a fun challenge... but I was happy to get back to the groomers with my track skis.
Mar 2 (2013-03-02) by Ingrid Hagberg from P12 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #24, #40, #1 (blue) [12.6km], Glide Wax: Vauhti Blue, Grip Wax: Carrot
Beautiful day out there and Fresh grooming on all the trails, too! In a few spots the snow has blown into the tracks, so classic can be a bit slow at these parts. Skating also looked wonderful.
Mar 2 (2013-03-02) by Sarah Taber from P16 grooming 
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: VR45
Skied last night in from P16 to Herridge cabin for dinner. #50 had either not been groomed recently, or the wind had drifted the snow to obliterate the track set. Was slow going and messy. By the looks of things, most of the park has been groomed this a.m., so things should be better today.
Mar 1 (2013-03-01) by Karl Saidla from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Gatineau Pkwy [12.9km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF Pink, Grip Wax: Would suggest no-wax skis or Vauhti K9, K12.
Skied from P5 down to Mt. Bleu and around the trails there a bit this morning to catch the bus. The groomer was starting to make passes on the Gatineau Parkway while I was out there. Where it was not groomed overnight the surface is bumpy and relatively soft, with somewhat slow now. Poles punch through the surfance quite a bit. The tracks have a couple of centimetres of snow in them. Around Mt. Bleu on some of the smaller trails things are a bit more granular in places, but by and large the conditions were the same as higher up. So, to make a long story short, it is skiable everywhere, but if you go where they have groomed this morning (check NCCC reports) it will be considerably better than where it was not groomed.
Feb 28 (2013-02-28) by David Brownrigg from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Violet
Skied the Doldrums due to the mild wet weather. Was expecting fresh grooming but none to be had. Trees in the park are weighted down with the wet heavy snow. Got showered a few times as I passed under branches.. Classic tracks were snowed over with a few skiers having packed them down a bit but not enough to make for a firm base. As a result skiing was slow and 'sinky'. Violet grip wax seemed to work for the most part. On the way back the stretch closest to P8 was firmer and quicker.
Feb 28 (2013-02-28) by Paul Jaenicke from P7 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1, #30, #4, #14, #31 [9.8km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Just a short ski out today from P7=>#30=>#1=>#4=>#14=>#1=>Shilly Shally=>#1=>#31=.#30->P7. Conditions were better then I thought they would be, still soft but not as slow as I thought it would be.

Just the scenery is worth the outing, i met the groomer going down Booth hill and later by Shilly Shally. Ridge was being groomed, trails #4, #14, Racing course were already done. Someone had skied on Frank's but not Highland's. I just tried Frank's between Ridge and #31 and at some places I had snow almost up to my knees.

It looks like we are in for a string of days like today around zero and just below freezing at night. All I can say is there is no lack of snow around, looks like a good month of March ahead!!!
feb28.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 27 (2013-02-27) by Megan McTavish from Old Chelsea grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy [2.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: zeros!
Just went out to check out all the new snow. I didn't make it to the parkways so I don't know anything about grooming, but it was beautiful in the small trails although quite slow going. Zero skis (waxless) were working well. Lots of snow laden trees making some very pretty scenery.
Feb 27 (2013-02-27) by Megan McTavish from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #30, Camp Fortune Race Course [20.1km], Glide Wax: vauhti LF violet, Grip Wax: vauhti K12 (silver) or zero skis
No new grooming so the conditions are quite hard with a trace of snow on top. The classic tracks are also starting to fill up with snow. The skiing is definitely still pretty good, just a bit on the slow side. I'm sure it will be changing throughout the day with the snow moving in. It was pretty windy out there this morning!
Feb 26 (2013-02-26) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #24, #40, #1 (blue) [12.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
My route today was from P12=>#40=>#24=>#1=>McKinstry=>Intersection of old trail #10=>back same way. I had intended to try to make it to the Fire Tower but turned back after reaching trail #10. From the 2km sign to McKinstry, I was the first skier and the tracks had a light coating of fresh snow and with the temperature rising made it slow and sticky at times in this section.

Although there seems to have been fresh grooming elsewhere in the park, there was none all along my route there and back. I didn't meet any skiers until I reached one Km past the Wolf bench on my way back. On the wooden bridges on #40 there is still a foot to a foot and a half of snow depth which is a good sign.

So all in all an enjoyable outing except don't intend on breaking any speed records!!!!!
IMG_2110.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2111.JPGEnlargeImage
IMG_2113.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 26 (2013-02-26) by Craig Forcese from P16 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Nice fresh grooming on a deep snow pack. But with raising temperatures, definitely very "grippy" snow. Skating conditions were plush and slow. Classic tracks were also slow. But still a pleasant Spring like outing, if a bit too early for true Spring.
Feb 24 (2013-02-24) by Katie McMahon from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #1 Penguin Climb, #1, Champlain Pkwy [16.8km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Lots of snow coverage out there. Groomed for both classic and skate. However; it is getting quite slow out there because the snow is getting pretty wet (think snowman making weather).
Feb 23 (2013-02-23) by Karl Saidla from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #3 [14.5km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF Violet., Grip Wax: Vauhti K12/K15
We skied on the parkways, Ridge Road and Burma this morning, starting from P10. For the most part, conditions are quite good. We have a firm base with a dusting of new snow that starts to glaze a bit in places, but I don't think grip waxing would be that difficult (we were skating). Burma is lots of fun but it remains a bit narrow, meaning that skaters cannot avoid skiing on the classic tracks in places. This shouldn't ruin anybody's day however. The mild temperatures and nice conditions at the same time won't be available forever!
Feb 22 (2013-02-22) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #3 [17.9km], Glide Wax: LF7, Grip Wax:
Schoolbuses arrived at P10 around 10 or so....considerable number of students on Fortune Parkway and Ridge...they were classic skiing but tended to occupy the entire trail including skating lanes. Not a major issue however!
The skate skiing was fairly fast...no new grooming on Fortune Parkway, Ridge, or Burma...some loose snow on an otherwise hard, compact surface.
Slowed down a bit as the noon temperature warmed things up....typical as we move into March.
Feb 22 (2013-02-22) by Paul Jaenicke from P11 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #2 (from #40 to #1), #40, #36 (black), #36 (blue) [23.3km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
After reading Jo-Ann's report from yesterday I had to return to P11 today. My route was different though: P11=>#36 blue=>bench by the lake=>across meech lake=>P12=>#40=>#2=>#1=>FP=>#36 black=>P11.

Trail #36 was in good shape, but when I got to the lake I expected to cross the lake in a straight line more or less, but the tracks led me to circle the shore of the lake, and I ended up at Blanchet beach P13, I did not see any tracks going towards P12, so I walked basically from P13 to P12 about 15 minutes.

As I started around 9:30 first one there, conditions were pretty fast, but as I was crossing the lake I could feel a change of conditions coming, and as i got on Ridge and Fortune parkway things were really starting to slow down as Megan mentioned in her report.

It felt like a weekend today as Huron, Shilly Shally & Keogan were overflowing with skiers (many students), I did see a school bus at P8 so that explains that.

It looks like we will escape the rain on the weekend but it will be warm around zero so tricky and slow conditions are expected.
feb22a.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 22 (2013-02-22) by Megan McTavish from Old Chelsea grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Gatineau Pkwy, #1 (black - Chelsea) [14.8km], Glide Wax: vauhti hf yellow, Grip Wax: vauhti K-9 (red) or K-12 (silver) or waxless
It is pretty slow out there today with the above zero temperatures and the fresh snow. The places that have been skied in more are faster, but don't expect speed! I skated, so I don't know what would work for classic but my guess would be K9 or K12.
Feb 22 (2013-02-22) by Ken Trischuk from P7 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, #6, #30, #17, #31 [15.7km], Glide Wax: Vauhti blue, Grip Wax: vauhti carrot
Tired of reading the "best ski of my life" reports while I sat at my desk at work so I decided to head to the park this morning and check things out before the weekend gets too warm/wet. Skied out of P7 and went up to loop 6 before heading along 17. The carrot wax might have been a bit cold but worked reasonably well for the conditions. Best ski of my life?... umm, no - but excellent conditions none the less. Skyline was nicely skied in but the downhills are getting a little washed out. Overall still quite good though. Same can be said for 17... but since it was my first trip down these trails this year I enjoyed every minute of it regardless.

I did try and ski out 34 from the back end of 6. No signs of it being closed and some fresh ski tracks so I headed in. It quickly became apparent that it hasn't been cleared yet. The tracks I followed got off course pretty quickly and led into a maze of dead ends and side tracks. After my third blind alley blocked me out I decided to return to 6 and carry on. On the given day this might have been a fun quest to snake my way through the brush... but I opted to head to the cleared trails instead.

Found trail 17 interesting (and many thanks to those who cleared it). In some cases though they piled the slash just off the track in thick piles of branches. This should rot and "compress" over the summer and not be a problem next year but for now... watch your line! If you get a little off the main track you could find yourself wrapped up in the tangle quicker than Steve McQueen trying to escape to Switzerland.

Should be good skiing this weekend if the rain holds off. Might be better to skate as grip wax could be a chore in the warmer temps... but we'll see what transpires.
Feb 21 (2013-02-21) by Jo-Ann Holden from P11 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #50, #36 (blue) [21.2km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: Carrot
A best-ever ski on trails 36 and 50 and a detour down to the bench at Meech Lake - the spot swimmers and canoeists head to in the Summer.

We chose trail 36 knowing that the fresh snow would be fun even though it was not groomed \"in 4 days\"- at least this is what the site led us to anticipate when we checked the site at 11:30 a.m. before leaving home. We were thrilled to find that it was actually stunningly groomed and trackset (apparently) a couple of hours earlier. We were the first to ski on it. This trail is such a gem! It more than made up for the skiing I\'ve missed in the last couple of weeks. The only negative? You guessed it. Some self centered skate bozo had left his/her mark on the tracks by the time we returned. There were also hikers\' tracks near the first bridge. I wouldn\'t mind so much if the classic tracks were groomed frequently.....
Trail-36-2.jpgEnlargeImage
Trail-36-3.jpgEnlargeImage
Feb 21 (2013-02-21) by Katie McMahon from P19 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #55 (green - shared), #55 (green - alternative), #55 (blue - alternative) [22.8km], Glide Wax: Vauhti Blue, Grip Wax:
Excellent skiing out there! Started at p19 and skied trail 50 and 55, around Taylor Lake and Lac Phillipe. Everything was groomed (except the very end of 55) for both classic and skate but the skating track was very soft. This end of the park is my favourite place to ski in the Gatineau hills, it is sunny, quiet, and has amazing scenery. So get out there and shred some fresh powder!
Feb 21 (2013-02-21) by David Brownrigg from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #3 [8.8km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Green
did the same circuit as Jim Smith (FP to Ridge to Burma to FP) and yes Burma was fantastic. I tend to stay from the steep trails when conditions are too fast but #3 was a heavenly ski this morning. Conditions were a bit slow due to the slightly windblown tracks but more liklely due to my green grip wax...blue probably would've been better..
Feb 21 (2013-02-21) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #3 [15.9km], Glide Wax: LF6, Grip Wax:
Excellent skate skking on Fortune Parkway, Ridge as well as Burma (#3). The overnight drop in temperature and fresh grooming made for firm, compact snow conditions...fast, controlled gliding!!
Burma was a lot of fun.
Wax choice will depend greatly on the time of day, given the wider range of temperatures and humidity. I started with an LF6 Blue; by afternoon, LF7 purple would have been suitable.
Feb 21 (2013-02-21) by Megan McTavish from P7 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #1 Penguin Climb, #1 [8.7km], Glide Wax: vauhti blue, Grip Wax: vauhti fluor carrot or K15
We went for a ski last night on Ridge Road (#1) and it was really nice. K15 and carrot both worked well, it had been groomed since the snow stopped and overall it was a great night. I'm sure today will be good skiing too.
Feb 20 (2013-02-20) by Paul Jaenicke from P7 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1, #30, #8, #17 [15.2km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Amazing backcountry ski today the best so far this year!!! My roue was from P7=>#30=>#17=>Keogan=>#1=>#8=>#30=>P7. It snowed pretty much from start to finish, trail #17 (Franks) had some skier traffic on it that had been on it before myself.

When I returned back decided to try trail #8 (Highland), well I was the first one on it today, so had to break trail which was fun, except for a few spots were the snow had drifted, it was quite deep. But the downhills felt like you were floating on top of the snow, sure different then when it is hard packed.

Before it warms up too much now is the time to try some of these backcountry trails (the one that are open) before they get too crusty and icy.
feb20a.JPGEnlargeImage
feb20b.JPGEnlargeImage
feb20c.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 20 (2013-02-20) by Logan Potter from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green) [4.5km], Glide Wax: N/A, Grip Wax: Carrot
Fresh snow, nice skiing but slow and hard to get grip. Great powder ski though. They were starting to groom around 9am, looked pretty soft, but definitely good for skate skiing!
Feb 20 (2013-02-20) by Ron Lorenson from N/A grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #55 (blue - alternative) [1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
No ski report today. On Sunday I commented on the snow rollers on Taylor Lake and Lac Renaud but rather carelessly I left my camera behind. Fortunately Dave Paton was better organized and provided me with the attached photo.

As you can they're quite unique and a phenomenon that's not often seen.

To me it looks like the Gatineau Gnomes were playing a game of snow bowling.
Snow_Rollers__S.jpgEnlargeImage
Feb 19 (2013-02-19) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24) [14.3km], Glide Wax: LF7 purple, Grip Wax:
First day back after the Keskinada. It was good to get the kinks out after the race weekend!
The groomers were out on the Fortune Parkway and conditions were great for skating. I skied on Ridge past the Blanchet trail intersection....one side of the skating surface was well groomed, fast and very enjoyable for several kilometers.
BUT! There were some amazing snowmobile ruts that in some areas, destroyed the fresh grooming...I saw one snowmobile carrying two fellows travelling at high speed. Probably doing work post-keski???
Given the extensive damage caused by the snowmobile traffic, I turned back about a half kilometer past the Blanchet trail intersection on Ridge.
1b, 40 and 3 were not groomed by noon.
Feb 19 (2013-02-19) by David Brownrigg from P2 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #27, #15 (blue) [22.5km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Blue
Skied up the GP this morning from Relais plein air and returned on the 15 and the 5. Conditions were excellent with the tracks in good shape (mostly hard) with only a few shallow or faded spots. Blue grip wax worked for the most part with only minor slipping here and there depending on the hardness of the track. No fresh grooming as far as I could tell..
Feb 19 (2013-02-19) by Megan McTavish from N/A grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Camp Fortune Race Course [5.5km], Glide Wax: vauhti LF blue, Grip Wax: vauhti fluor carrot
Our team checked out the Camp Fortune racing trails this morning. The groomer was out at the same time as us so it was a bit soft, but the trails are in good shape and they are fun to ski on. A great place to practice downhills and cornering skills! My guess is that the rest of the park will also be in great shape today.
Feb 18 (2013-02-18) by Garry Tarr from P9 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #1 (blue) [22.5km], Glide Wax: Swix hydro blue, Grip Wax:
Skate ski from P9 across the Connector then up the Fortune Parkway and west on Ridge Road to the snowshoe trail from Blanchet. Conditions were excellent, with a powdery surface almost everywhere (even on the Connector and the corner in the Khyber pass). There was also evidence of fresh grooming everywhere along this route. The fresh grooming continued west past the Blanchet snowshoe trail, presumably to Old McKinstry. Despite the cold conditions and my less-than-high-tech wax, skating was quite fast. The classic tracks were deep and well-formed. There were hordes out enjoying the sunshine, good snow, and a civic holiday in Ontario.
Feb 18 (2013-02-18) by Karl Saidla from P7 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 Penguin Climb, #1, #1B, Champlain Pkwy, #3, Camp Fortune Race Course [34.8km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF Green., Grip Wax: Vauhti K19, covered with Vauhti Fluor Green
Had some fun showing Benoit Chauvet (55k Gatineau Loppet Classic winner) some of the best the park has to offer today. It was a great day for showing it off. Ridge, the parkways, and the Fortune racing trails are in all in great shape for classic or skate and were groomed recently. Burma is getting a little rutte dand icy and doesn't have classic tracks, but was still great skiing.
Feb 17 (2013-02-17) by Ron Lorenson from P17 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #51, #53, #54 (green), #55 (green - shared), #55 (green - alternative), #55 (blue - alternative) [24.3km], Glide Wax: Toko cold powder, Grip Wax: Start Green over a base of green klister and Vauhti tar
I let myself be influenced by Ken's report from yesterday and covered many of the same trails and found similar conditions. My route was:
P17 => #53 => #51 => P19 => #50 => #55 classic => #55 blue => #55 shared
=> Renaud => #54 green => Lusk => #54 green => #55 => #50 => P19
=> #51 => #53 P17
With the exception of 51 & 53 all the trails skied were newly trackset - firm and fast with a good powder surface for control and climbing. 51 & 53 were hard and glazed and choppy out of the track - on the hills they were so hard that it was difficult to set an edge for control on the downhills or to set the grip wax on the climbs. Ken wanted to assign more stars than allowed - I've taken two stars away from the score I assigned to 50, 54. & 55 and assigned to them to the score for 51 & 53 giving an average of five. The tracks on 51 & 53 were still good and delightfully fast - it's just that, with the choppiness and glaze, they would be a challenge for many of the P17 community who prefer a softer and easier ski.

There's an interesting phenomenon on Taylor Lake and Lac Renaud. I believe they're called "snow rollers" - anyway they're rolls of of snow that are created and built-up by the wind as it pushes them across the surface of the lake. The ice of both lakes is scattered with them - they look like the work of elves. Regrettably I decided not to bring my camera with me so I couldn't get a picture of them.

On the positive side of Demsis they did a great job of maintaining the quality of the recreational trails, over the weekend, in addition to the great effort required to groom the trails for the loppet. On the negative side I met the "Brown Lake Express" again on #51: this is the snowmobile, pulling a maintenance sled, that uses 51, 53, & 52 to deliver water and propane to Brown Cabin - all the other contractors were able to use Brown Lake to deliver water to Brown Lake - when there's an alternative there's no need to use narrow classic trails.
Feb 17 (2013-02-17) by Megan McTavish from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [19.6km], Glide Wax: vauhti LF green, Grip Wax: Vauhti super binder covered K19
Beautiful day for the Gatineau Loppet skate race! The parkways were firm and reasonably fast considering the cold temperatures this morning. Congratulations to everyone who raced this weekend!
Feb 16 (2013-02-16) by Ken Trischuk from P17 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #50, #51, #53, #54 (green), #55 (green - shared), #55 (green - alternative), #55 (blue - alternative) [39km], Glide Wax: Vauhti green, Grip Wax: super binder covered with Vauhti carrot
Hmmm, can only seem to add 5 *'s to the "Rate the conditions" part of this form. I feel it deserved 7 or 8 *'s today. Since P19 was closed to the public until the races got underway I figured I would park at P17 and enjoy a ski in to watch the start. Bit brisk at -17C but not too bad once you got going. Perfectly groomed tracks on the way in. For those who were unhappy about soft conditions last weekend... not a problem anymore. Beautiful snow on a solid base. Skied in Kennedey road and cut over to P19. Got there before the buses arrived so I skied a ways up 50 before returning for the start. 6 lanes of classic gave me lots of options on the first hill... but I chose to "warm up" only one ;)

Enjoyed the start of the races and then headed off to ski the trail 55 loop. Again - perfectly groomed and untouched tracks. Since P19 was closed to the public I had the upper end of the park more or less to myself! Looped back to Renaud and then skied up to Lusk lake before heading back to P19 where I met the groomer plowing under the multiple classic tracks and returning things to the regular one set per side.

Finally skied back to P17 on 53. It was only then that I began to run into the crowds for the day. Lots of people skiing out of P17 by mid morning. I chose Super binder under the grip wax but things were pretty abrasive and I had to add wax a couple of times. Perhaps should have opted for a klister binder instead. Hopefully the rest of the park is in equally nice shape - I'll have to find out tomorrow.
Resize_of_5.JPGEnlargeImage
Resize_of_1.JPGEnlargeImage
Resize_of_2.JPGEnlargeImage
Resize_of_3.JPGEnlargeImage
Resize_of_4.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 15 (2013-02-15) by Andre Marchand from P2 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #27 [0.5km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF violet, Grip Wax: Vauhti K-9 (Fluoro Red)
Classic skied on the Gatineau Loppet trails near Mont Bleu (start/finish area). Grip wax was tricky with the new wet snow. The classic tracks were quite wet, so as the temperature drops it may get icy/fast for tomorrows classic race. How icy will depend on when they groom again, but make sure you have a good binder on for tomorrow (Vauhti blue Klister or Vauhti super binder). Good luck to everyone racing!
Feb 14 (2013-02-14) by David Brownrigg from P17 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #51, #53 [13.4km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Violet
My first ski of trails 53 and 51 this season...was surprised by all the construction ruckus for the hwy 5 expansion at the trail head. Hope they include an easy access to P17 once its all done. I would rate today's conditions as good in the open sunny areas which tended to be a bit icey and fast to excellent in the shaded areas where things were a bit drier with better grip (used Violet grip wax). Grooming was somewhat fresh all along the 53 but nothing had been done on the 51 since the last small dumping of a few centimetres. All in all a most pleasant ski on a sunny and mild morning..
P1030784.JPGEnlargeImage
P1030786.JPGEnlargeImage
P1030787.JPGEnlargeImage
P1030793.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 14 (2013-02-14) by Jim Smith from P3 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #27 [16.5km], Glide Wax: LF8, Grip Wax:
I skied for an hour from P3 onto #5, and checked out the Keski start and #27....sunny day and fast, compact conditions on #5 for skating. The groomers were hard at work at the Keski start and finish areas and had worked on some of #27.
Feb 14 (2013-02-14) by Megan McTavish from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Gatineau Pkwy [12.9km], Glide Wax: vauhti HF blue, Grip Wax: vauhti super binder covered with vauhti K-15
Just a quick ski this morning to test some skis for the loppet. It wasn't as cold as we expect it to be on Saturday but it was still useful. The classic tracks were redone on one side and a bit older on the other, both were in great shape though. There is lots of snow and with the current forecast it should be a perfect weekend for the loppet! If you haven't signed up yet, you can still do it at Mont Bleu highschool tomorrow night.
Feb 14 (2013-02-14) by Craig Forcese from P16 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
A very pleasant day for a forest skate ski along #50. Grooming underway as I skied. The trail was soft and slow with some snow groomer grooving at spots -- so not a fast ski with lots of glide. But certainly not "ski shoveling" either. Goldilocks point for a nice recreational outing.
Feb 13 (2013-02-13) by Megan McTavish from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , #1 Penguin Climb, #1 [10.1km], Glide Wax: vauhti hf pink, Grip Wax: guess - K-9
I skated on Ridge Road (#1) and the conditions were beautiful. It was pretty warm (+2) but the grooming was fresh and the snow was fast and not too soft. Looks like the skiing will be super all over the park for the loppet this weekend!
Feb 13 (2013-02-13) by Kyla Vanderzwet from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #26 [6.3km], Glide Wax: Vauhti blue, Grip Wax:
Most of our ski was on the parkway near Asticou, but also on trail 26 and 5 near there. The trails and parkway hadn't been groomed at that time but the new snow wasn't too deep, so the skiing was still pretty good and quick. Classic tracks were visible but snow-covered.
Feb 12 (2013-02-12) by Paul Jaenicke from P11 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #3, #36 (black) [16.8km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
My route today was from P11=>#36 black=>FP=>#3=>#1=Huron=>#1=>FP=>#36=>P11. I only gave it 4 stars because of the sticky conditions on #36 and Burma because there was no grooming there, otherwise the scenery with the new fallen snow on the trees and temperature was good.

I talked to a patroller and he said they had just finished up clearing trail #12 and were now working on trail #21. Slowly but surely more backcountry trails are opening up, Western #9 opened a few days ago, I skied by it and from one side of Burma there were no ski tracks at all, but it sure looked inviting. The patroller told me they will probably NOT be clearing trail #11 this year probably not a priority right now.
feb12a.JPGEnlargeImage
feb12b.JPGEnlargeImage
feb12c.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 11 (2013-02-11) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #1B [14.8km], Glide Wax: LF7, Grip Wax:
Skate skied at about 9:30. A fresh centimeter or two over a compact surface provided good conditions for controlled, fairly fast gliding on Fortune and Champlain Parkways as well as on Ridge road (#1) and 1B. Good fun!
LF7 swix purple was a good choice.
Conditions are likely to change throughout the day....hopefully not too much freezing precipitation!!
Feb 10 (2013-02-10) by Garry Tarr from P12 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #24, #40, #1 (blue) [12.6km], Glide Wax: CH6, Grip Wax: VR40
Classic ski from P12 up 40 then west on 24 and Ridge Road to McKinstry. We were pleasantly surprised to find that complete grooming now extends to "Old McKinstry" (at the top of the hill where the sign indicating 2km to "New McKinstry" is located). Past that point we found strictly backcountry skiing, with a single skier-groomed track winding under bent birches and past fallen brush. The actual jeep road is hardly recognizable! With the soft, deep fresh snow the backcountry skiing was easily controllable. We found a few other adventurous types enjoying the warm fire at McKinstry. Jo-Ann continued on towards the Fire Tower, and found that there was little storm damage on this section. She followed snowshoe tracks past the intersection with old Trail 10, but eventually even the snowshoe tracks tapered off and she turned around rather than break a fresh trail. Overall it was a great adventure and perhaps the only chance we'll get to visit McKinstry this year. There is still a fair bit of brush clearing to do before the last 2km of the road to McKinstry is open. The groomed sections were in uniformly excellent condition, with firm classic tracks and a nicely packed skate lane. The final descent down Trail 40 was a delight, even though by mid-afternoon legions of snowplowers had started to expose the hard base. After returning to P12 we did a quick trip across Meech Lake, which is currently crisscrossed with classic tracks and snowshoe trails. Pictures are posted on www.musicianonskis.ca.
Feb 10 (2013-02-10) by Sarah Taber from P12 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #3, #24, #40 [25.6km], Glide Wax: F4 universal, Grip Wax: Vr40
Like others I enjoyed one of the best skis of the season this afternoon. Grooming and weather made for an absolutely perfect afternoon. P12 up #2, 1B out to a great sunny view at Champlain lookout, down the #1 to Fortune Parkway and back up Burma to #1, to then return via #24 and #40 to the parking lot. The grooming on narrower trails (40, 24, 2, Burma) was far better than what we saw on the parkway out by the lookout.
Feb 10 (2013-02-10) by Paul Jaenicke from N/A grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #56 [10km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
As Ron enjoyed his best classic ski in years , I enjoyed an epic Backcountry ski in beautiful soft powder. My route from an unofficial park lot (side of the road) on Eardley road was #56 from there right to the bottom at Taylor lake, then back up to the Lookout, stop for lunch, then back down all the way to Richard lake yurt, then return to car.

Although the total was about 16 km, I felt more like it was double. The trail was skied in single track, with a side trail for snowshoers right beside it. The only problem in all of this there are still many fallen tress which have not been cleared off the trail yet, especially up to the lookout and to Richard lake yurt. I did not have to take my skis off, but I had to go around many times or under trees, Felt like an obstacle course.

The uphills were a lot of work, but the downhills made it worth while. In my journey, I met 4 skiers and 4 snowshoers goes to show you how isolated this area of the park is.
feb10h.JPGEnlargeImage
feb10f.JPGEnlargeImage
feb10b.JPGEnlargeImage
feb10e.JPGEnlargeImage
feb10c.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 10 (2013-02-10) by Ron Lorenson from P17 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #51, #53, #54 (green), #55 (green - shared) [34.3km], Glide Wax: Swix LF6, Grip Wax: Start Green and Swix Blue (V30) over Vauhti tar
I've just returned from the best day of classic skiing that I've experienced in a number of years in terms of weather and most importantly conditions.

I concentrated on the Lac Philippe sector starting from Wakefield:
P17 => #53 => P19 => #50 => #55 => Renaud => #54 green => Lusk Cabin
=> #54 green => #55 => #50 => P19 => #51 => #53 => P17
Everywhere the tracksetting was flawless - firm enough but with the feel of real snow in it - great glide and great grip. The long #53 loop to P19 was an experience not be missed - often that trail is windblown and difficult - today I seemed to float uphill and downhill.

Regrettably I didn't have it in me to include the #55 Taylor Lake loop; however, a reliable source told me that she did it and that it was great.

I didn't really know how to wax given that the day would go from -21C to -5C so I just went with the wax from yesterday (cold snow conditions) - it worked perfectly.
Feb 10 (2013-02-10) by Karl Saidla from P6 grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #7 [10.8km], Glide Wax: Vauhti Green, Grip Wax: Vauhti K19 or Vauhti Fluor Orange
We skied on the Champlain Parkway in the vicinity of Black Lake hill and also on trail #7. Trail #7 was in immaculate shape for classic skiing. The skate lane of the Champlain Parkway had been groomed over night, but the classic tracks had not, leaving them generally soft and inconsistent. Overall though, a beautiful day for skiing...just don't expect fast conditions for either skate or classic.
Feb 9 (2013-02-09) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: #1 Penguin Climb [1.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Just passing on the following report, that originated with the NCC, regarding the groomer situation:

Once again, we are dealing with technical problems with our equipment. The biggest groomer, which takes care of the parkways, is out of service. This time, the problem is major and it will be out of service for at least two weeks. Another groomer of similar size will replace it, starting next Monday. This type and size of machinery is pretty hard to come by mid winter!



In an objective to resolve this issue, the grooming team has come up with a plan. For the North Western part of the Park, grooming resumes as usual. For the Southern part, they will wait until tomorrow morning before beginning so that snow accumulates:



-One of the smaller machines will go out with a compaction roller of 16 feet wide and will focus on the Parkways, all day, and possibly also Friday night;



-Two snowmobiles will replace this machine on its usual run (#3 and #36) to insure good compaction of the trails and to maximize the use of the new fallen snow. These two trails won’t have tracks tomorrow during the day;



-Once the work is done on the parkways, another operator will take this machine and compact and trackset trails #3 and #36.



For all the other trails, grooming stays the same as usual and everything should be groomed and trackset by the end of the day Friday
Feb 9 (2013-02-09) by Cedric Poon from N/A grooming 
Trails Skied: #15 (blue) [6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: red on blue
I had a short classic ski on R15 from Mine road to Pink lake and back. R15 had enough skiers over it that it was hard to tell if it was track set. But I did see a few spots high up on the sides that were made by a groomer. A few of the hills were already in V shape. It is unlikely that a groomer will do another pass tonight. Nevertheless it was a fast and fantastic classic ski. My SWIX red on blue worked perfectly.

The rumor from Fresh Air Experience is that the large groomer has broken down a few days ago.
Feb 9 (2013-02-09) by Sarah Taber from P11 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #36 (blue) [21.2km], Glide Wax: F4 universal, Grip Wax: VR30
A beautiful, sunny day to be out in the park. Lots of new snow made for nice soft skiing, particularly on some of the hills on the #36. Conditions were quite slow overall and in a lot of places the tracks had collapsed. Skate conditions looked quite soft and tough. Wax was a perfect choice, and the weather made up for up anything frustrating about the slow conditions.
Feb 9 (2013-02-09) by Ron Lorenson from P17 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #51, #52, #53 [35.1km], Glide Wax: Swix LF6, Grip Wax: Start Green and Swix Blue (V30) over Vauhti tar
OK it was a day of "REAL" snow after a long period of old hard-pack. It was the day to revisit the Wakefield triangle counter-clockwise - the best way - the downhill way.
P17 => #53 => #51 => P19 => #50 => Renaud => #50 => #52 => #53 => P17

The tracks were a delight - soft, fast, with lots of grip - my wax choice functioned as well as I could have hoped for. It was only when I had to leave the sanctuary of the tracks that I got into trouble. The semi-compacted snow hors trace was so soft that it recorded the technique of every skier that had passed that way: those that had herring-boned up hill left a number of slices that made the hill look like a staircase; those that had snowplowed down left parallel luge-runs. I had no choice other than to conform: when my wax no longer held me in a climb in the tracks I had no choice but to wallow in a herringbone in the loose snow churned by those who had passed before; on the downhills, which I had so looked forward to, I conformed and snowplowed. It\'s possible that I no longer know how to handle real snow. Regardless, it was a wonderful day - and I\'m prepared, tomorrow, to adapt to real snow; the sun and temperature was as perfect as possible. I expect the tracksetting tonight will harden the trails and make them more manageable.

On #50 and #55 the skating tracks looked quite soft and seemed to be a lot of effort.

#55 classic had not been trackset. Reliable sources who skied in from P11 told me that #36 was in wonderful shape. It was only on #52 that I had to adapt to the soft hors trace snow - 50, 51, and 53 were a delight. #54 green was trackset.

Tomorrow I expect to revisit that area of the park and revel in soft snow classic - I'm just not sure, yet, where.
Feb 9 (2013-02-09) by Paul Jaenicke from P17 grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #51, #52, #53 [35.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Decided to try out the Wakefield triangle today counterclockwise my route was from P17=>#53=>#51=>#50=>#52=>#53=>P17.

I think by the other reports you can sum up the day by SOFT snow and INCONSISTENT GROOMING. Trails #53, #52 & #51 looked liked they had been groomed last night and NOT this morning, part of trail #55 had NO grooming and the website claimed it was groomed.

A couple of skate skiers ahead of me had completely obliterated the classic tracks on both sides of trails #53 & #51, what were they doing on classic only trails? On the positive side it was sure nice going down the big hills on # 52 in all that nice powder.

Tomorrow should prove to be another great ski day!!!!!
Feb 9 (2013-02-09) by Jim Smith from P3 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #27, #26 [18.3km], Glide Wax: LF4, Grip Wax:
The Parkway from P3 was very soft and tough going for skaters. I moved to #5 and skated to #15, then back to the CGEP area (#26)...much firmer conditions allowed for great controlled glide...huge difference from the parkway conditions.
So, I did loops on these firmer sections.
Feb 9 (2013-02-09) by Jo-Ann Holden from P2 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #27, #7, #15 (blue), #15 (black), #26, #29 (shared), #35, Pink Lake Access [19.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
This was a very enjoyable classic ski, with supremely brilliant scenery, and REAL snow. It's quite an adjustment after the icy stuff of late. We skied the 20 K Keski course, modifying the route on the way back way in favour of the wooded trails instead of the parkway. (I am so sick of parkway skiing!!)

There had been grooming but conditions were very, very slow and soft. On the return trip we found that the tracks had already been obliterated by the numerous skiers, including a few skate skiers. The steep section of trail 15 which leads up to Kingsmere was particularly messy. There was a meter wide swath of deep, churned snow (was this ever groomed?) and an equally wide bobsled run of ice that had been scraped free of snow.

It is a rare treat to have new snow to play in, but Demsis will need to groom and trackset again it as soon as possible, preferably overnight, so that things can firm up a bit.
Feb 9 (2013-02-09) by Karl Saidla from Old Chelsea grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , #1, #6, #8, #17 [18.9km], Glide Wax: Vauhti Blue, Grip Wax: Vauhti Fluor Orange
Pretty much perfect for a day on the small trails. Skyline, Frank's and Highland were skied in nicely for the most part. The fresh snow made for some soft landings and the sunshine and lack of wind kept us all in a very good mood. From what we saw, Ridge Road and the Parkways were groomed overnight. Things haven't really firmed up yet so you can expect it to be a little on the soft side.
P1040369.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040370.JPGEnlargeImage
P1040379.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 9 (2013-02-09) by Garry Tarr from P8 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, North Loop, #1, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24) [17.7km], Glide Wax: CH6, Grip Wax:
A beautiful day marred by more Demsis Dismal grooming. I skated from P8 along the Doldrums, across the Connector, up Fortune, west on Ridge and 1B to the top of the Wolf Trail at Blanchet, then back via Burma. Skating was a serious mistake- classic would have been far more enjoyable. After a fall of over 20cm of dry powder, I wasn't expecting fast skate conditions. However, I was at least expecting that the main trails would be compacted. This wasn't the case. Despite the claims of the NCC website, when I arrived at the Doldrums only one side had been groomed (see photo). So far as I could tell the other side was buried more than 10cm deep in last night's powder. The groomed side was badly churned up. Half way along the Doldrums I met a groomer returning to P8. I thought I was in luck and jumped into the fresh tracks. I immediately sank up to my bindings. The groomer wasn't applying enough pressure to form a skate lane capable of supporting the weight of the lightest skier. Rather than continue churning through deep powder, I moved over to the snowmobile lane outside the classic tracks. Most other skaters were also using this lane. It was firm enough for quite reasonable skating. Conclusion: a simple pass with a snowmobile had done a better job than the groomer itself. The exhausting thick powder conditions persisted up the Fortune Parkway. However, when I reached Ridge Road I found a beautiful firm lane worth a 5 star rating! The excellent conditions continued all the way out to the Blanchet intersection. 1B was also excellent. Although the NCC website claimed grooming had been done to McKinstry, there was no grooming past Blanchet. However, the warning ribbon is down and backcountry skiers had made their own classic tracks heading west. Burma was a huge disappointment. The website claimed it had been groomed, and indeed some sort of machine had made markings on the surface, but there was neither a useful skate lane nor proper classic tracks.

I highly recommend skiing this afternoon, but I would either start at P5 or P7 and stay on Ridge, or go classic.
demsis_dismal.jpgEnlargeImage
Feb 9 (2013-02-09) by Andy Jonyas from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [19.6km], Glide Wax: Unknown, Grip Wax:
We were wondering where everyone was this morning. You didn't miss much. A ton of new snow, all groomed, but especially on Black lake hill and other parts on the Champlain parkway, the base has not hardened, causing you to sink into a white quagmire. I walked up some of those parts, on skate skis. Classic was not much faster. Our pace was off by about a third. Otherwise, it was beautiful up there.
Feb 8 (2013-02-08) by Jo-Ann Holden from P7 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #6, #30 [4.3km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Wow! Such fun! By 2:00 a LOT of snow had fallen. The drive to P7 was a knuckle biter as Kingsmere Road had not been plowed recently, and I was amazed to see two full rows of cars at P7 even while a full-fledged snow storm raged.

Booth hill had been groomed sometime earlier today. On a whim I decided to try Skyline. It has been a couple of years since I last skied it, so I was a bit nervous about it, especially alone. The nervousness lasted 3 minutes. The conditions were perfect! Although there is evidently ice beneath the snow, there was enough coverage of fresh snow to just ski all the downhills. There were a couple of really thrilling ones among them. It was so much fun that I repeated the loop a second time, this time in the "wrong" direction. When heading back to the car, Booth Hill had just been freshly groomed - I could hear the groomer heading down Penguin. And Kingsmere Road had been plowed.
There are two photos on musicianonskis.ca/blog.
Feb 8 (2013-02-08) by Megan McTavish from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [11.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: vauhti fluor carrot
It was a nice day to get off the groomed trails and into the forest. There is enough snow to make the backcountry trails nice, not so much that you can't use racing skis. I peeked at the parkway (between P5 and Mica) and found that it wasn't groomed. I can't say what its like anywhere else though.
Feb 8 (2013-02-08) by Don Fugler from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #30, #8, #17, #31 [12.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Took the #17 and #8 loop in the fresh snow this morning. It might be better Saturday. The ski out on 17 was reasonable. Sometimes my skis would catch in old ruts under the fresh snow, but generally good. I started on 8 and found the hills too daunting. There was not enough new snow to cover the discontinuities of creeks, foot traffic, snowmobile tracks, and so the downhills were quite dangerous instead of exhilarating. I cut off onto the adjacent parkway and picked up 8 again at the bottom, just before getting back to 30. With another 10 cm of snow and some skier traffic to set the trails, it should be good.
Feb 7 (2013-02-07) by David Brownrigg from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #27, #26, #29 (alternative), #29 (shared) [9.4km], Glide Wax: F4 Universal, Grip Wax: Polar
No fresh grooming on my usual classic ski of the 26, 29, 27, 5 and the GP. The open areas were drifted over somewhat but was particularly bad in the fields behind the Relais Plein Air. With the snows expected tonight and tomorrow will wait for the weekend and fresh grooming...
Feb 7 (2013-02-07) by Don Fugler from P12 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #2 (from #40 to #1), #33, #40, #21 [8.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
It is a good time for backcountry skiers as the trails are coming back. I took 40 and 33 up from Meech, then cut across to 2 on 21. This trail, 21, appears to be open from 33, but it is not. It will take another day of cutting and some snow to fill in the footprints before it is skiable. Trails 40 and 2 were groomed and fast. Trail 33 had not been touched and had the light recent snow over crust. It was fine. I love that descent on 2.
Feb 7 (2013-02-07) by Don Fugler from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: #1 Penguin Climb, #6 [4.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Skyline (#6) is open. I was out yesterday morning and there was a skim of snow over the hard-packed snowmobile maintenance surface, but it was a pleasure nonetheless. There was enough new snow for safe descents and just one or two awkward side slopes due to snowmobile usage that should be fixed by the oncoming snowfall. A single skier and I met mid-trail, going in opposite directions, and each smiling because we were able to ski in the woods again. The trip back down #1 is my favourite minute of skiing.

There is no closed sign on the Doug's 34 trail off 6 so that, too, might be cleared.
Feb 6 (2013-02-06) by Sheila Kealey from P11 grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #36 (black), #36 (blue) [22.1km], Glide Wax: Vauhti blue, Grip Wax: Superbinder + Vauhti K-18 (orange) covered with Vauhti fluor green
Checked out the 1st 20km of the new 55km classic course for the Gatineau Loppet by skiing an out-&-back from O'brien (P11). Trail 36 was beautiful but not the best ski conditions (4-day old grooming with new slow snow on top): O.K. coverage but a little thin in exposed spots. Trail 50 towards Lac Phillipe was in good shape - there will be lots of double poling on this section! The snow in the forecast and hopefully new grooming on trail 36 will make for great skiing on this section this weekend.
Feb 6 (2013-02-06) by Megan McTavish from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1 [11.1km], Glide Wax: vauhti LF blue, Grip Wax: vahuti fluor carrot over a thin layer of super binder (could probably get away without the binder)
Nice skiing today. The skating lanes were refurbished but not the classic. On the parkway between the T and Champlain the tracks were filled with snow and pretty slow. Ridge Road was well skied in so was fine.
Feb 5 (2013-02-05) by Jo-Ann Holden from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1 (green) (#2 - #24) [13.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
This is ancient history now, from yesterday morning/afternoon, but I want to add my two cents just for the history record. Knowing the unpredictable and illogical patchwork of grooming in Gatineau Park I couldn't decide whether to use klister binder (in case something was groomed - the web site NEVER indicates grooming early enough to act on it) or to use regular wax (in case the new, powdery snow was not groomed). Well, it turns out there was no perfect answer. Fortune was incredibly slow in the tracks, even downhill, because only the skate lane was groomed. However Ridge was fantastically fast (almost wiped out twice) and the klister binder was perfect for the freshly groomed tracks. It was heavenly and the new grooming went further than Blanchet. It was a great ski, but couldn't both the parkway and Ridge be groomed on the same day?! Just wondering, does anyone know if it is open to the Fire Tower now?
Feb 5 (2013-02-05) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #1 (blue) [21.8km], Glide Wax: LF4, , Grip Wax:
I concur with a lot of what Ron reported.
It was a great day for classic skiing....fresh grooming in the afternnon on Fortune to Champlain lookout as well as on Ridge toward Mcinstry.
But I was skating....totally different conditions....hard, icy, slick surface on Fortune and Champlain parkways...the skating lane had not been groomed.
There was grooming for skaters on ridge....especially past # 2. But with the cold, it was very hard, abrasive and fast.
I had one fall due to inattention on a flat section....man, that is one hard surface!!

One big disappointment: a fellow skater had chosen to glide across the classic tracks on Champlain and Fortune to get to freshly groomed and softer snow! What a shame!!!
Feb 5 (2013-02-05) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #1 (blue) [23.8km], Glide Wax: Toko cold powder , Grip Wax: Start Green over a base of green klister and Vauhti tar
Matt described it yesterday - the ridge is the place to go for great skiing. I set out to verify that the tracksetting has reached McKinstry - it hasn't yet - another skier told me the tracksetting reaches only to the old McKinstry (at the 2km to shelter sign).

I decided to bend to the temperature and go classic. my route was:
P10 => FP => #1 => lookout => #1 => Blanchet + 1km => #1 => CP => FP => P10. Up to Blanchet the classic tracks were hard, fast, and flawless. After Blanchet the tracksetting was as good as it could be but suffered from the problems of a newly opened trail: Demsis has concentrated on compaction with only a single classic track; the trail is uneven and there are still branches buried in the snow. With the exception the newly-opened section, the skating lane everywhere was hard, fast, but with enough surface to allow lots of control.

On the way back Demsis treated this old classic skier with new double tracks on both sides of the CP and FP - they were soft and well-formed -a great way to go back home to P10. As is only just, the skating lane was left undone; however, it was still quite good.

There are are snowmobile tracks on #9 (Western) so maybe the real skiers will soon be able to ski a real trail.

Burma is still closed. #2, #24, and #1b have not been trackset but have a hard base with about 3 cm of new snow on top and would be quite skiable.

After skiing the north end on the weekend and after my experience of today, my advice is to ski the ridge - that's where you're going to find the best snow and the best tracksetting.
Feb 5 (2013-02-05) by Katie McMahon from P2 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #27 [16.5km], Glide Wax: Vauhti Blue, Grip Wax: n/a
Beauty weather out there once it warmed up! Skied (skate) from Relais plein air and the surronding areas. Parkways are extremely hard packed to the point of being icy making it very difficult to balance skate skiing. Bike paths are also hard packed but less icy. I would recommend classic today for maximum enjoyment. The classic tracks looked perfect!
Feb 4 (2013-02-04) by Matt McInnes from P3 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #26, #29 (shared) [19.2km], Glide Wax: Blue (Green would probably be best), Grip Wax:
Hard to beat yesterday's ski as Ridge was freshly groomed Sunday morning-- I have never seen it in better shape. Kudos to Desmis.

This morning was almost as good-- fresh snow was faster than yesterday due to warmer conditions. No fresh grooming but it didn't matter. Small trails and parkway were all very nice.

Blue or Green would both work for glide on this fast snow.
Feb 4 (2013-02-04) by Megan McTavish from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
XC Ottawa was racing at Nakkertok at the Eastern Canadian Championships on the weekend and taking a well deserved rest day today. If the conditions at Nakkertok are any indication, the skiing should be great out there in the park this week!
Feb 3 (2013-02-03) by Sarah Taber from P3 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Fortune Pkwy, North Loop, #32, Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [29.3km], Glide Wax: F4 universal, Grip Wax: Universal klister covered with VR30
Overall another great day! A few cms of snow overnight, particularly in the higher elevations, meant for very good conditions overall. New grooming, as some others have said, has meant granular sugar snow covered by a bit of new snow in most places. There are still some icier sections, with classic tracks being very shallow indeed. The #32 in particular... Skating looked to be quite good as well.

Wax choice was actually quite good, and allowed for decent grip in most places.
Feb 3 (2013-02-03) by Garry Tarr from P8 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, North Loop, #1, #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24) [20.2km], Glide Wax: Swix hydro blue, Grip Wax:
Skate ski from P8 along the Doldrums, across the connector, up the Fortune Parkway, west on Ridge and 1B to the end of the road (currently where the snowshoe trail comes up from Blanchet) then back on 1A and the Champlain Parkway, with a final detour along Ridge to the top of Penguin before returning via the FP. Conditions were generally very good, in places excellent. Most of the way the ice had been crushed into thick granular sugar, so thick you couldn't detect the hard base underneath. One or two more centimeters of fresh powder had fallen overnight. In places the skating was really fast (even with my less than state-of-the-art glide wax). The best snow (or crushed ice, if you insist) was on the Doldrums, Ridge east of Gossip Corner, and Ridge west of the Trail 2 intersection. There were a few bad patches. The Champlain Lookout parking lot was as an unskiable sheet of ice, and the Parkway between Champlain and Huron Lookouts was hard and not in great shape (here you could feel the base). 1B was fairly hard, with exposed ice on the steeper corners. The bottom end of the Connector just above the Meech Lake Road was also very icy, but the rest of the Connector was well groomed and quite tame.

As mentioned Ridge is now open to the easternmost intersection with the Wolf Trail, but taped off past that point. Burma is once again taped off.

Conditions should hold through at least the early part of next week. If you can sneak away from work for a few hours, a ski trip to the Gatineau should be very worthwhile. Don't let the miserable conditions in Ottawa fool you- it's much better at the higher elevations in the park.
end_of_road.jpgEnlargeImage
Feb 3 (2013-02-03) by Paul Jaenicke from P19 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #50, #51, #55 (green - shared), #55 (green - alternative), #55 (blue - alternative) [27.3km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Like Ron mentioned yesterday it was a good day but far from a great day. My route was from P19=> #51=>#55=>#50=>#55=>#51=>P19. I guess you could call this the #55 Loop or Taylor Lake loop. There had been no recent grooming on #51, and part of #55 until you got a the start of Taylor lake going back towards lake Philipe.

The tracks varied from average, to shallow, to non existent (from Taylor lake yurt around the lake), still some debris in certain areas. The worse part around the lake had a thin layer of powder on top of a hard icy base.

What we really need is MORE snow. Skied by trail #54 and like others it seemed to be suffering from a lack of snow. As I went counterclockwise on #55, I avoided going down the BIG hill after Taylor lake yurt, there were some boot marks from some skiers deciding to play it safe and walk down, but if you took it slow it would be ok.

All in all still a enjoyable ski perfect temperature, no wind!!!!!
feb3a.JPGEnlargeImage
feb3b.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 2 (2013-02-02) by Ken Trischuk from P17 grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #51, #52 [26.2km], Glide Wax: green, Grip Wax: Teho green covered by Swix special blue
Waited until late in the day to ski a loop of the WAkefield triangle. Conditions were good with the fresh snow falling. They must have groomed the trails at some point after this weeks melt ut not sure when. The base was smooth but frozen solid with mostly well formed classic tracks. The fresh snow on top slowed things down just a bit which was welcome. I opted to go clockwise today to get the trickier trails out of the way before darkness fell.

Lots of debris on 52 as I believe Ron mentioned last week - the hot weather didn't improve it in that regard. Overall it wasn't too bad though. I stopped a couple of times to pull some of the bigger stuff off the trail but gave up on the smaller stuff as I'd still be out there!

Classic tracks got a little washed out near P19 owing likely to the higher degree of traffic but things improved once back on 51.The lower half of trail 55 looks to be open and groomed now but I did not ski it today. Lots of signs of the hard work the trail crews have been putting in clearing the trails for which I am grateful.
Feb 2 (2013-02-02) by Jim Smith from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, #1B, #30 [9.3km], Glide Wax: LF4 green, Grip Wax:
Noon skate from P7 up 30 to #1, Ridge....good gromming and some new snow allowed for fast controlled gliding. It was quite cold at -14 and the LF4 green worked well.
1b had not been groomed and was a little bumpier but the snall amount of new snow did help although conditions there were slightly slower.
Enjoy Sunday....a day off for me!!!
Feb 2 (2013-02-02) by Sarah Taber from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, North Loop, #1 Penguin Climb, #1, #1B, #2 (blue), #32, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #24 [26.6km], Glide Wax: F4 universal, Grip Wax: Universal klister
Surprisingly good conditions considering all the rain we had this week.

Started at P8 and did a loop headed up pkwys on the way there out to where the grooming ends at the Wolf trail. Returned down the #1, down penguin climb back to P8.

Classic tracks were icy (we used klister but even that was getting stripped and needed reapplication) and there was some debris but overall fairly good. New grooming meant that even the steepest of downhills weren't too icy. Skating conditions looked quite good, too.
Feb 2 (2013-02-02) by Garry Tarr from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [22.1km], Glide Wax: Swix hydro blue , Grip Wax:
Quick exercise skate ski from P5 up to the base of the Black Lake Hill, then down to Pink Lake and back to P5. Conditions were better than I had expected. Demsis has done a pretty good job of crushing the ice in the skate lane. Overlaid with the 1cm of fresh dry powder that fell this morning, skating was fairly smooth. Most of the time you couldn't really feel the crunchiness of what was underneath. The dry powder overlayer made for quite slow conditions while skating and also while descending in the track. I should have used a harder glide wax- my skis were quite slow. The tracks were very firm but with a cover of powder, so regular waxes should work for classic skiing. The classic skiers I saw seemed to have no trouble with grip. There weren't too many others out in this sector. Overall it was well worth getting out and quite decent skiing.
Feb 2 (2013-02-02) by Ron Lorenson from P16 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: Dibloc Blue LF over graphite, Grip Wax: Start Green over a base of green klister and Vauhti tar
It was a good enough day but far from a great day. I went classic from P16 along #50 to the intersection with #55. It seems that the thaw was more severe in that area - the base-depth is reduced and more compact to the point of ice in places. Most probably because of the difficult conditions the quality of the tracksetting was not as good as we have seen most of this year - the skating track was uneven and rutted - the classic tracks were shallow. There is quite a bit of debris everywhere - either new debris brought down from the trees or old debris that has melted out of the snow. The trail is at its worst in Meech Valley - it improves when you are out of the valley and improves toward the Lac Philippe end - but never gets all that good. We really need snow.
Feb 1 (2013-02-01) by David Brownrigg from P1 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #27, #26, #29 (alternative), #29 (shared) [9.4km], Glide Wax: F4 Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Green
Did the #5, #27, #26 and #29 trails plus the Gat Pkwy from P1 to P2 and had fresh grooming the whole way. Classic tracks were icey and noisy but in good shape considering the rain from the last 2 days.
Feb 1 (2013-02-01) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1B, #24, #33, #40 [18.1km], Glide Wax: LF4, Grip Wax:
Demsis has done a great job getting the trails back in shape!
Great grooming on Fortune parkway from P10, as well as on Ridge all the way to the intersection with Blanchet trail, and on 1b. This made for controlled, very fast skating on soft, cold sugar snow.
Ridge was getting a little hard and bumpy with the cold, but no real problem.
On #24, #40, #33, good grooming provided a soft surface...but watch for twigs, small chunks of wood littering the trail. Pay particular attention to those occasional sharp pieces of wood or branches stuck upright in the snow...

The cold, icy snow is abrasive, and green wax with a hardener is best.
Overall, great conditions for weekend outings!
Feb 1 (2013-02-01) by Paul Jaenicke from P7 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #1, #30, #31 [11km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Nice bright sunny day, my route was from P7=>#30=>#1=Champlain lookout=>champlain parkway=>.fortune parkway=>#1=>#31=>#30=>P7.

Demsis did a good job of grooming the trails, little debris on Ridge road but not much to speak of. Burma #3 was closed. Skyline #6 and Frank's #17 have been cleared but now the problem is lack of snow, I spotted a few rocks showing.

The rain this week has really diminished the snow pack, most of the ponds are glare ice, would be good for a skate. I met the groomer at the junction of Fortune and Champlain, hopefully most of the trails will have been done by today for the weekend.

There are a few icy spots on some of the steeper hills on Ridge, but nothing too serious.
feb1a.JPGEnlargeImage
feb1b.JPGEnlargeImage
Feb 1 (2013-02-01) by Craig Forcese from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 [13.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Apres le deluge... A nice rehabilitation of the trails after this week's torrent. Fast skating -- maybe fastest of the year. Where there is fresh grooming (all the trails I skied), good control. Where it is windy and sunny (eg along the Parkway up to the lookout), the grooming crusts over relatively quickly and skiing becomes a bit more bumpy. But it is still very skiable. Ridge Road was less windy, more shaded, softer and a very nice skate. Classic trails looked good for the most part. Some debris in the tracks further down Ridge Road.

Amazing work fixing up trails on a diminishing snow pack. For the next storm, if it must rain, it would be preferred if the snow came after the rain.
Jan 31 (2013-01-31) by Jim Smith from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [19.6km], Glide Wax: LF7, Grip Wax:
Welcome to Crushed Ice X-treme XC Skiing!!!
Hard,icy conditions on the Gatineau and Chanplain parkways from P8 along with gusting winds that hit you from different angles made skating quite the challenge, especially on downhills.
I did not need an energy drink....the adrenaline was enough!
Add to that the ruts from snowmobiles and previous ski traffic, as well as small branches, the odd leaf....called for careful side-stepping.
The classic tracks are mostly melted away.
As I went by #15, I noticed a lot of debris from the high winds on that trail....another clean-up!!
Finally, I was elated to finish unscathed, and glad that I had used rock skis.
I do not advise going out today...unless some grooming is done this afternoon.
Jan 31 (2013-01-31) by Matt McInnes from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #26, #29 (alternative) [19km], Glide Wax: red, Grip Wax:
Not a bad day, at least not as bad as expected. Things are surprisingly ice, but ski-able. With a bit of snow, things should be just fine.

Not sure what is better-- parkway or the small trails. Parkway is a bit more even but icier, but neither option is great. Lots of little sticks on the small trails made for some nice obstacles.

It was snowing a tiny bit rather than raining which is a good sign. Lots of wind but not too cold... yet.
Jan 30 (2013-01-30) by Matt McInnes from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, North Loop, #1 [14.5km], Glide Wax: Swix red/ Red toko structure, Grip Wax:
Not a bad day at all. The first few kilometers from P8 were in great shape. After that the track got uneven as the groomer seemed to have problems with the soft surface. Gets better up by fortune lake. Tried skiing Burma but too soft. Ridge road was decent but pretty soft and slow. Hopefully the rain isn't too bad and turns into snow this morning. If you head out tonight I would recommend yellow with big structure for glide.
Jan 30 (2013-01-30) by Megan McTavish from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Fortune Pkwy, #1 Penguin Climb, #1 [14.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Variable conditions in the park this morning. They groomed between P8 and the T with Champlain Parkway and Fortune Parkway. The best part is between P10 and the T (new classic tracks too). Between P5 and P8 where they haven't groomed is also skiable, but better for skate than classic. It was pretty icy. Also the classic tracks between P8 and P9 were not redone so are icy. Ridge Road was pretty slow but definitely ok. The lower part of the park seems icier than the higher sections which are more sucky. All in all, much better out there than expected. Hopefully the rain keeps holding off!
Jan 30 (2013-01-30) by Sarah Taber from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #1B [14.8km], Glide Wax: F4 universal, Grip Wax: VR 45
Skied last night just as the freezing rain was starting... P10 up to the #1, #1 out to the #2, return along 1B and CP, FP back to the starting point. I think we managed the last good ski before the rain today has ruined things. Good grooming on the parkways and the #1. 1B had not been groomed but had been skied, and the fresh snow made it quick and fun (even though Demsis gave it a thumbs down). The last bit coming down FP, the freezing rain really started to pick up and was very quick coming down. We also had so much ice frozen to our clothing it was like a firm outer shell!

Let's hope we get some new snow soon after this rain/melt! Snow dances please!
Jan 29 (2013-01-29) by Jim Smith from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Champlain Pkwy [9.5km], Glide Wax: LF7, Grip Wax:
At noon, there was fresh grooming from P8 to Champlain Parkway and on to Black's hill. Conditions for skating were firmer and faster on either the right or left side of the parkways...the middle was a little too soft particularly along Champlain.

I noted that grooming had also been done on Penguin up to Ridge.

Great day for an easy recovery ski!
Jan 29 (2013-01-29) by Paul Jaenicke from P2 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #27, #26, #29 (shared) [19.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Got out for a short ski before the freezing rain. Around P2, only part of #27 and #29 were groomed, along with the Gatineau parkway.

Now here is a question for you fellow skiers, would you give a trail that has NOT been groomed but skied on a thumbs down for classic skiing?
It seems thats what Demsis has done today!!!
Jan 29 (2013-01-29) by David Brownrigg from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [6.5km], Glide Wax: Swix Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Blue
Took advantage of the new snow this AM and so did lots of other skiers. P10 was packed like a Sunday afternoon by 10:00. No new classic grooming unfortunately which made for a slow ski and only 1 lane on either side of both the FP and CP all the way to the lookout. Same for the return trip on Ridge back to the FP..
Jan 29 (2013-01-29) by Megan McTavish from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1 [11.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: vauhti fluor carrot
Beautiful morning with lots of fresh snow from yesterday. The groomers were out and Ridge Rd (#1) had one track and the skating lane done and the parkways had one track on each side and skating in the middle. It was pretty soft but really nice. If you have a chance, try to get out and enjoy it before it starts to rain!
Jan 28 (2013-01-28) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1B [12.3km], Glide Wax: LF4 green, Grip Wax:
I skated skied from P10 around 10 am ahead of the heavier precipitation...when there were a few centimers of fresh fine grained snow. Very good for fast, controlled gliding.
I turned off Fortune Road onto Ridge, and 1b. Just as the snow accumulation started to be a factor, the groomer came by where Ridge meets #24.
This fresh grooming made for ideal conditions both for skaters as well as classic folks!
The grooming ended where Ridge Road meets the Blanchet trail.
Should the groomers work throughtout the day, conditions should be good this evening.
Jan 27 (2013-01-27) by Sarah Taber from P3 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [11.5km], Glide Wax: F4 universal, Grip Wax: Green, covered by VR40
Another great day to be out! New grooming on the parkways made for great conditions - in the classic track but looked good for skating too. Snow was a bit abrasive, making for slow downhills, but other than that, another gorgeous day.
Jan 27 (2013-01-27) by Jo-Ann Holden from P17 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #52, #53, #55 (green - shared) [34km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: Green Klister covered with some sort of swix green.
Ron's report has saved me a lot of effort! Garry and I had (for us) an "epic" classic ski, based on the Wakefield Triangle. We found conditions so good that we threw in a side trip to Herridge, Taylor Lake and opted for the longer 53 on the way back to P17. Classic tracks were generally deep, firm and fast. Garry rated this trip 8/10, not bad for a died-in-the-wool skate skier (I waxed his classic skis to encourage him to try it. He didn't skate this, although there was evidence someone had) .

We were glad to do 52 in the wimpier direction, although it still had lots of fun ups and downs. The two longest uphills would have been too bumpy, ridged and hard-packed for me to enjoy as a downhill. There were a couple of spots where branches had been groomed into the tracks.

Pine Road had more debris on the tracks but nothing major. It was fun.

The tracks on trail 55 were somewhat shallow in places, but generally good.

Between trail 55 and P19, trail 50 was especially poor. The legendary Demsis Ridge was evident, and snowmobiles had caused considerable sloppiness in the skate lane.

Ron has covered the rest of the trip more eloquently than I ever could, but the last leg on trail 53 was extremely beautiful.

How sad to see another gross bout of weather arriving on Tuesday.
Jan 27 (2013-01-27) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1B, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #2 (from #40 to #1), #24, #40 [9.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Started out from P12-=>#40=>#24=>#1=>#1B>#1=>#2=>#40=>P12. Nice day all trails were groomed, $40 especially nice, grooming on Ridge stops at intersection with $24 see picture. There were signs of traffic past there but I didn't venture out that way to see how far along they have cleared out.

Garry will be pleased to note there was a nice snowmobile rut in the skating lane coming out of Western chalet heading back onto Ridge going towards Huron.

If you are heading down trail #2 black be cautious it is quite uneven and bumpy, being the first time down this year I took it quite slow, there were many trees and branches cut down on part of this trail, and also a lot of foot marks on the trail,

Ski trails are for skiing NOT for hiking!!!!!
jan27.jpgEnlargeImage
Jan 27 (2013-01-27) by Ron Lorenson from P17 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #51, #53 [13.4km], Glide Wax: Cold powder over Dibloc Blue LF and graphite, Grip Wax: Start Green over green klister base
Another case where imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. I decide to follow Paul's route of yesterday - the 51/53 loop:
P17 => #53 => #51 => P19 => #53.
I haven't done the complete loop for a number of years. It's a very attractive trail that provides an enjoyable change of pace - it's a pleasant rolling terrain without any grunt climbs or any death-defying downhills - just easy gliding. The scenery is quite nice. The part of #53 between P19 and #51 is especially attractive with a mix of open fields and conifer woods - it follows the Lapeche river and goes by the former farms of the pioneer families of the Trowses, Kennedys and the Browns.

There is new tracksetting which is as good as could be expected but the tracks are hard and fast but not quite icy. The P19 to #51 section of #53 still has a lot of debris in the wooded areas - I had to stop twice to pry bark off the base of my skis. #52 has also been trackset.

Demsis has restarted a less-than-desirable practice - using the ski trails (#51 and #53) to deliver water and propane to Brown cabin via snowmobile. With the hardness of the trails today the snowmobile that passed me was not affecting the quality of the tracks; however, with softer conditions a snowmobile pulling a maintenance sled would trash the tracks of a narrow classic trail. It's not necessary: it's possible to get within 1 km of Brown cabin, via truck, using Brown Lake Road - from there, it's a matter of going, over snow, by snowmobile or ATV via the access road to the cabin.

Yesterday, Paul met only one skier. Today I kept meeting thundering hordes of burdened marathoners in-training using the #53 loop to put in the kliks.

It was a pleasant day. The sun is starting to get that February feel to it.
Jan 26 (2013-01-26) by Sarah Taber from P3 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #1 Penguin Climb, #1, Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #5 (green), #15 (blue) [41.3km], Glide Wax: F4 universal, Grip Wax: Green covered by polar to start; green after 12pm
Started at P3 just before 11am. Headed up the pkwy to #5, then #15 blue to the Gatineau parkway. Headed up the pkwy to P5 then up the #1, Penguin hill past Keogan then up to Huron. Return from Huron via the parkways.

Overall an excellent day to be out. Temperature felt downright balmy after the last week and the sun was shining. Grooming was either fresh or relatively so. Parkways in excellent (though very quick) shape (for both skate and classic), and 5/15/1 were all great as well.
Jan 26 (2013-01-26) by Garry Tarr from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #1 Penguin Climb, #1, #1B, Champlain Pkwy, #1 (green) (#2 - #24) [22.5km], Glide Wax: Swix hydro blue (CH6?), Grip Wax:
Skate ski from P5 up the Penguin Hill, west along Ridge Road and 1B to the intersection with 24, then back on the Champlain and Gatineau Parkways. The surface was well-crushed refrozen snow, acceptable for control but noisy, hard and abrasive. The best skiing and flattest surface was west of Trail 2. The Champlain Parkway would have been good too, but it had been trashed by snowmobiles. I saw an abandoned snowmobile above Black Lake, and then two other snowmobiles passed me at high speed coming up the hill. They must have been out to rescue the broken machine, because all three passed by again just after I returned to P5. They did a good job of destroying the skate lane, leaving deep ruts and popcorn-size chunks of frozen snow. What they were doing out on this section with no cabins to maintain was beyond me. They were not rescuing a skier in distress, as far as I could tell. It would be nice if the NCC left patrolling to skiers and kept the snowmobiles in the shed unless there is an emergency. Aside from the snowmobile damage, conditions were better than I expected and it was good to be out in the afternoon sun.
Jan 26 (2013-01-26) by Jim Smith from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Fortune Pkwy, North Loop, #1 [15.9km], Glide Wax: LF4, Grip Wax:
A balmy -14 or so and fast skating conditions made for enjoyable skate skiing. You did not have to cover your mouth from extreme cold and could increase the intensity of your workout.
No grooming today...so the surface from P8, up Penguin and along ridge road, as well as on Fortune parkway and on doldrums was hard, with snowmobile tracks and ski traffic ruts along the way. On some stretches, some loose snow on the trail, the result of previous ski traffic, made things a little better.
The LF4 green was a great choice for the noon time temps.
Jan 26 (2013-01-26) by Ron Lorenson from P17 grooming 
Trails Skied: #50, #51, #52, #53 [35.1km], Glide Wax: Cold powder over Dibloc Blue LF and graphite, Grip Wax: Start Green over Swix polar over green klister
I've been too long this season without doing the Wakefield triangle - so today was the day for doing it. I should have followed Paul's good judgement in doing the 51/53 loop - I would have had better conditions and better skiing. Regardless, it was a good day: the Wakefield triangle is always a good loop with lots of diversity in classic terrain; it was just far from the best Wakefield triangle I have ever done.

My route was: P17 => #53 => #52 => #50 =>P19 => #51 => #53 => P17.

The worst part was #52 which was quite hard-packed and covered with a lot of debris. The normal joy of #52 is a rhythm of climbs followed by great descents - with the fast, hard, unforgiving snow and the prospect of stopping dead due to an imbedded branch meant that I had to take care on the downhills rather than enjoying them. Nevertheless the scenery was great and, for that reason, I'm happy that I did it.

#50, #51, and #53 were in better shape. They were still hard and covered with debris but were good enough that they could be skied enjoyably.
Jan 26 (2013-01-26) by Paul Jaenicke from P17 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #51, #53 [13.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
My first ski from P17 this year. Did a short loop P17=>#53=>#51=>P19=>#53=>P17. The conditions of theses 2 trails were good, just a bit of debris from the evergreen trees here and there, the classic tracks on #53 were especially good on the wide open area of the trail, looked like it had just been groomed not much traffic there.

From the junction of #51 until I looped back I did not meet one skier close to an hour. Sun was nice, no wind and warmer temperatures made for a pleasant ski. I was told by a reliable source (Ron) that trail # 52 was not in the greatest shape, some debris and icy hills.
jan26a.JPGEnlargeImage
jan26b.JPGEnlargeImage
Jan 26 (2013-01-26) by Jo-Ann Holden from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, #1 Penguin Climb, #1, #1B, Champlain Pkwy, #24, #40 [24.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
P5=>#1=>#1B=>#24 =>#40=>#24=>#1=>Lookout=>CP=>GP

I was skiing with friends who were seeking lots of uphills in preparation for the CSM. I've never before gone down, then up trail 40!

The trails (classic tracks in particular) ranged from excellent to poor, depending on how many skiers and how many snowmobiles had passed by since the last grooming. Not everything was recently groomed.
#1 Penguin to Gossip Corner - very good shape, although very hard.
#1 from Gossip to Western - this was the worst stuff of the day. Hard, over -skied, tracks disappeared often, lots of snowmobile ridges.
#1B, #24 and #40 were excellent (despite boot marks on 40) as we got there before they had seen much use. By mid-morning #40 was getting quite busy.
The parkways were variable, and had generally icier tracks than the smaller trails.

All in all it was a great ski. The skiing itself = 5 stars!
Jan 25 (2013-01-25) by Jo-Ann Holden from P6 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd , #7 [23.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: Green Klister covered with Vaughti green fluor
Beautiful conditions both on the parkways (both Champlain and Gatineau) and on the smaller trails in the Kingsmere area. Grip and glide were both fantastic. When I left home at 12:30 the website still indicated NOTHING in the area had been groomed within 3 days, so finding everything in such excellent shape was a gift! At 1:00 it was evident that the grooming was several hours old. I had spent considerable time agonizing about where our group should meet, as we have a mix of abilities and I wanted to avoid fast,icy downhills. If the website had been up to date, or had even intimated which trails were going to be groomed ( the park office used to be able to tell you this, if you phoned them)it would have made planning much easier and we might have met somewhere more interesting than the parkway. It's time I smarten up, ignore that website and just take potluck on the conditions. They were great today!
Jan 25 (2013-01-25) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #1 (green) (#2 - #24) [15.6km], Glide Wax: Cold powder over Dibloc Blue LF and graphite, Grip Wax: Swic polar over green klister
I skied classic some of the same area as Megan - I totally agree with her comments on the parkways and Rdige - good tracksetting, great tracks. I continued on past the Burma cutoff to the the water tank on #24. #1 has been trackset past the water tank. There are are snowmobile tracks on #2 black so, hopefully, it will be a candidate for opening soon. #1B looked quite good.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery: following Jim's example, I tried cold powder for glide for the first time:- much, much faster than the Start green and Dibloc blue LF that I have been using to get me over the squeaky snow conditions; I am now a cold powder convert. The klister/polar combination is still giving me great grip on the hard tracks.
Jan 25 (2013-01-25) by Megan McTavish from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1 (green) (#2 - #24), #3 [17.9km], Glide Wax: vauhti lf green, Grip Wax: vauhti super binder, vauhti fluor carrot, vauhit fluor green
Another lunch-time ski. It felt warm out there at -16 today! The parkways were all re-groomed for skating, but not classic. The old tracks are good but quite hard. I had super binder, carrot and green on and my grip was great. Ridge Road (#1) was fully groomed (classic and skate) and was really nice. I also went on Burma (#3) for the first time this year and it was fun. It hasn't been groomed in a few days so the downhills were a bit like a bobsled run. The track was solid though and it was fun...just don't expect perfection if you venture in there. Should be a great weekend for skiing!
Jan 24 (2013-01-24) by Jo-Ann Holden from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax: Green Klister covered with Vaughti green fluor
I had intended to ski from P8 to Mica (interesection of Gatineau and Champlain Parkways) but the wind and the prospect of freezing on the very fast downhills turned me back to P8 before I had even climbed the first hill. Defaulting again to the Doldrums, it was less windy. The tracks were exactly the same as several days ago and still very useable. They are very hard, but not quite icy. Grip was great and glide was excellent. There were even 3 other skiers out enjoying the late afternoon sunshine. One comment and one question:
1. There are ice-meteorites beside the outside classic tracks especially near P8. If you are actually trying to use your poles for propulsion that lane is a pain, because you will need to focus constantly on avoiding those icy chunks.
2. At the bench there is a wide swath of grooming that swings out behind the bench and takes out the classic tracks. It's not a big deal, but why is it there?
Jan 24 (2013-01-24) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1 [11.1km], Glide Wax: CH3cold powder and LF4, Grip Wax:
Started from P10 and skated skied into a headwind....AARRRRGGGG...chilly! No grooming on the parkway but snowmobile traffic had crunched up some of the surface, providing the only structure.
Moved out of the wind onto Ridge road and skied to #24....again, hard, noisy surface conditions with the softer snowmobile tracking.
I switched to the classic tracks which were fast and did double polling! Obviously, a day for the classic skier.
If you decide to ski, protect your face and cover your mouth to avoid freezing the bronchials! Avoid any intensity...
Jan 24 (2013-01-24) by David Brownrigg from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #26, #29 (alternative), #29 (shared) [8.9km], Glide Wax: F4 Universal, Grip Wax: Swix polar
Felt a bit apprehensive upon arriving at P1 at 10:00AM and seeing no other cars in the lot. Maybe too cold for skiing? Once I got going and warmed up was treated to mostly good conditions. Even though no fresh grooming to found, classic tracks were in mostly good shape especially the Gatineau Pkwy between #27 and #26. Conditions on the pkwy were nice and fast. The wooded trails tended to be a bit slow especially in the open areas where snow had drifted over the tracks.
Jan 23 (2013-01-23) by Megan McTavish from Old Chelsea grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , #1 Penguin Climb, #1, #1 (black - Chelsea), #4, #14 [13.3km], Glide Wax: vauhti lf green, Grip Wax: vauhti fluor green
I went for a lunch-time ski today to try to hit the warmest part of the day. It was cold but if you dress right, it is definitely ok. I wouldn't do any high intensity skiing though! Wear your boot covers, mitts or lobster claws, buff, earmuffs and lots of layers.
As for grooming, the parkways were nice, #4 and #14 were good, #1 (Ridge road) was refurbished for skating but had one track that was a bit of a mess (groomer technical problems) so they left the other one and it was in good enough shape. There is a spot near #14 that the groomer broke down and made a funny bump and they have that marked off with pilons.
Enjoy and stay warm!
Jan 23 (2013-01-23) by Sarah Taber from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 [13.6km], Glide Wax: F4 universal, Grip Wax: Polar
Skied last night - P10 up to Champlain parkway and return via #1 from Huron. New grooming in both the classic tracks and skate lanes was great and the cold temperatures made for slow, squeaky snow. Wax choice was perfect. Overall a great night to be out!
Jan 23 (2013-01-23) by Matt McInnes from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #26 [17.8km], Glide Wax: Swix Green, Grip Wax:
Cold morning but little wind made it OK. The smaller trails were very slow but for some reason the parkway was skiing much faster. Skating was much better than I expected and best on the parkway. There are some deep ruts from skiis for some reason-- maybe from Sunday morning? Bundle up and enjoy!
Jan 22 (2013-01-22) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1 [13.6km], Glide Wax: Dibloc Blue LF over graphite, Grip Wax: Swic polar over green klister
I skied classic pretty much the same area as Jim - I agree with everything that he reported. I also did the CP from Huron to the T-junction - the underlying tracksetting was quite good but it was a mostly undisturbed snow surface that was painfully slow for both classic and skating.

The klister/combination worked like a charm and gave me perfect grip everywhere. My glide was just OK - I should probably follow Jim's example and buy some colder waxes like LF3 and LF4.

Regardless it was a great day to be out.
Jan 22 (2013-01-22) by Jo-Ann Holden from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Very nice, if short ski between P8 and 9. Although there was no new grooming, the slight dusting of new powder took the edge off yesterday's (would have been) hard icy tracks. The sun was brilliant and the temperatures not a big problem. I find that wearing a ridiculously thick pair of downy mittens makes all the difference.
Jan 22 (2013-01-22) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1 [11.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Did Fortune to Ridge rd, and the section on Ridge to #24...groomed for the most part but with the cold breeze, as expected, the surface was fairly hard. The little bit of new snow made for slightly slower glide than yesterday....the squeakinees factor was higher. LF3 would likely have been the best....I had a mix of CH3 cold powder and LF 4.

Fortune Parkway from P10 had a number of snowmobile tracks and grooves; you had to pick the more evenly groomed section. Along the middle of #1, Ridge Road, there were a few rough patches where the surface was chewed out and littered with frozen chunks of snow...I have seen this before in very cold conditions when grooming can be a challenge,
Overall though, the grooming was good and allowed for good skating in cold conditions.

Day off tomorrow!
Jan 22 (2013-01-22) by Sheila Kealey from P3 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [11.5km], Glide Wax: Vaughi blue, Grip Wax: carrot covered with green
Nice conditions this morning! Luckily I met the groomer as I started from Gamelin so had nice classic tracks on the parkway. Don't let the cold keep you inside - I was actually too warm (overdressed!).
Jan 22 (2013-01-22) by Ron Lorenson from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [1.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Just passing on the following NCC notice (of yesterday) regarding grooming. My take on this is that I should concentrate on my Kold Klister Klassic technique for the next day or two.

"We simply wanted to let you know that we have encountered a few technical problems with our grooming machines. The difficult conditions, hard and icy snow, has taken its tole on our equipment and decalibrated the tracksetter on certain machines. This results in tracks that sometimes have uneven depth. Also, it is possible that tracks are not perfectly straight in some areas. Expect to see this problem on the Parkways and trails #50 and #36. Please note that some parts of the parkways were only regroomed for skating for the same reason.

Conditions in the last few weeks have been very tough on the grooming equipment. Tomorrow, the grooming machine operators will take the day to fix their machines so that we can offer high quality grooming as soon as Wednesday for the skiers that aren\'t scared of the cold weather!"
Jan 21 (2013-01-21) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1B, #24, #40 [16.7km], Glide Wax: CH3 cold powder on LF4, Grip Wax:
Late reporting!!
Despite the cold, great skate skiing on freshly groomed trails which included Fortune to Ridge road, 1b, 24, and 40. I expected to suffer more, but was surprised at the good glide using cold powder, CH3 on a green LF4.....LF-3 would have been good as well. The sugar snow, while cold and abrasive, was quite fast.

#3 did not appear to have been groomed; I avoided it.

Hopefully, tomorrow will be more of the same...
Jan 21 (2013-01-21) by David Brownrigg from P1 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #26, #29 (alternative), #29 (shared) [8.9km], Glide Wax: F4 Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Polar
Due to the cold opted once again for the Asticou / Relais Plein air wooded trails. Trails were not groomed and icey hard as I set out on #5 (was kicking myself for not using klister) but soon met the groomer as I approached the Mont Bleu H.S. on #29. Groomed classic tracks were 'spongy' with small ice chunks but an improvement nonetheless. Sunday's winds blew more debris onto most trails in the area but grooming cleaned a lot of it up...
Jan 21 (2013-01-21) by Jo-Ann Holden from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Fortune Pkwy, North Loop, #1 Penguin Climb, #1 [17.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
It was a fabulous ski today! New grooming on Penguin, Fortune and the Doldrums - and my wax was charmed (yesterday\'s green klister plus cold hard wax). The Fortune downhill was a bit chilly, but I was toasty for the rest of the ski, as there was little wind. A couple of minor things: before I left to ski the ski conditions site claimed that the Gatineau parkway (between P8 and Mica) had been trackset several hours before. NOT TRUE! It was horrifying, noisy, icy and frequently covered in nuts and berries from yesterday\'s wind. The skate lane had some shallow renovation and would have been not as bad. Anyway, the rest of the trails were very good, and it was one of the better skis of the year.
Jan 21 (2013-01-21) by Ron Lorenson from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: Start Green (my hardest wax) , Grip Wax:
Not wanting to bear the ice-cream headaches of the downhills I wimped-out and skated two iterations of the Doldrums. It was a pleasant but slow day.

Jo-Ann won't need to bear the "racket" of skiing on ice - the tone has changed - it's now the squeak of very cold snow.

Demsis has done a very reasonable job of grinding and tracksetting the major trails. The freshly trackset snow was a cold sugar that was slow and abrasive; with the cold two-hour-old snow was starting to harden up and go back to ice (albeit faster). The classic tracks looked quite good but hard - they were faster than the skating track. All the classic skiers seemed to be having a good day.

My prediction for tomorrow is that the skating track will be hard and rutted whereas the classic tracks will survive with a bit of hardening. My intention for tomorrow is go classic using some combination of klister and hard wax.
Jan 20 (2013-01-20) by Sarah Taber from P3 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [11.5km], Glide Wax: F4 universal, Grip Wax: Blue extra
What a change since yesterday! Started out at P3 with the intent of taking the loop up the 5 and 15, with a return via the parkway, but a 100m in on the 5 made it quite clear that wasn't going to happen! Classic tracks were shear ice, and skate lanes were rock solid also. They had clearly groomed prior to, during or immediately after the rain. Wax was a very poor choice and I clearly needed a klister base.

Did a very short parkway ski up to #29 and back. With the howling winds, dropping temperature, and conditions that was more than enough for me. Hopefully they'll be out grooming soon or the next few days will be cold and disappointing.
Jan 20 (2013-01-20) by Jim Smith from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, #30 [8.1km], Glide Wax: LF7, Grip Wax:
During my skate ski, the temperature dropped roughly 10 degrees, and the winds were ferocious! As a consequence, surface conditions were rock hard, icy and any loose snow was blown away.

Ankles and knees got quite the workout as I tried to control ski slippage.

With the more extreme cold forecasted for the week, I can only hope that there will be some grooming done to soften trail surfaces.
Jan 20 (2013-01-20) by Jo-Ann Holden from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Well, Demsis is a master of frugality, which one must admire. Our classic tracks, which are apparently quite expensive to groom, will not need to be groomed again in the foreseeable future. It absolutely poured rain last night in Chelsea, and there was a short, fierce thunderstorm. Sometime after this, while the temperatures were still mild, and the snow was perfect for soggy snowmen, everything was groomed up to LOOK BEAUTIFUL. Then the temperatures started to plunge. Temperatures are predicted to be extremely low all week (as low as minus 30).
Having spent the morning taking race photos, I had no time for serious waxing before heading out this afternoon, butluckily I had waxed ahead of time, anticipating that Demsis WOULD groom today while the snow was wet, (reverse logic, since they did not groom much yesterday when the snow was fresh and the temperatures were ideal), so the wax worked like a charm: green klister base binder with several coats of hard wax on top. Assuming Demsis won't be grooming again anytime soon, (and why would they, those tracks look SO GOOD!), this wax job should last me the rest of the week, so I will be saving money too! If I don't kill myself on the icy downhills or go deaf from the racket of skiing on ice (always a hazard for musicians) it will be a fantastic week of skiing!
Note: I didn't ski very far: the wind gusts, especially in the open area around P8 were wicked! I was blowing backwards! I'm saving my energy for tomorrow's ski when the winds will hopefully be less. The skis are waxed up and ready to go!
Jan 20 (2013-01-20) by Ken Trischuk from P19 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: didn't matter, Grip Wax:
Another beautiful but very different day on the trails. I had hoped to time the transition from slush to icy tracks but as the blue skis opened up on my drive north I knew I was a bit late. -8C when I started. Trail 50 had been groomed likely when it was still marm out but it was now pretty hard and icy. The corduroy did provide enough texture to hold an edge though so it was fast cruising down the track. Lots of little twigs on the trail as the winds were howling overhead. Not too bad that you could avoid them if you were alert. Skated to Herridge and back. Don't think I've ever skied it faster with so little effort.

Most of the side trails are still closed but 52 looked freshly groomed. I probably could have skated it as the classic tracks were now rock solid but I decided the decents along there might be more adventure than I was looking for today.

Now to pull out the multiple layers of insulation if I'm going to ski this week!
Jan 19 (2013-01-19) by Megan McTavish from P16 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Nice skiing from P16 this afternoon. Both the skate lanes and classic tracks were in pretty good shape although certainly soft as one would expect in places. Given the expected drop in temperature tomorrow we should have very good conditions in the park in the coming days. Now you just have to dig out all your cold weather specialty clothing items.
Jan 19 (2013-01-19) by Rick Hellard from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, North Loop, #1 Penguin Climb, #1 [14.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
That was the hardest easy ski of my life!

Try as I might, I could not find any trails worthy of calling them actually trackset. Penguin was like skiing in a deep but narrow gully, Ridge was soft all the way to Champlain Lookout and then it was just a slugfest to the beginning of 24, as was my return trip on 1B.

If it had not been such a beautiful day, I'd be more angry than annoyed.

Hopefully, the groomers get out over night and fix things up for everyone's enjoyment (I have to work so won't be skiing).
Jan 19 (2013-01-19) by Ken Trischuk from P6 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd , #7, #15 (blue), #15 (black) [30.9km], Glide Wax: Vauhti blue, Grip Wax: Carrot covered by flouro blue
Beautiful day to be out in the fresh snow. My route took me from P6 down 15 to below the Pink lake hill. Returned up the parkway and made a side trip on trail 7 before skiing part way up Black lake hill... and then returning to P6. The parkway had just been groomed on one side when I started but everything else was untouched. 15 was well skied in though and a fun ride in the fresh snow. It surprised me when I got back on the parkway that it hadn't been done but I guess they did the loop above Mica and were working on the rest as I skied. Temeprature stayed a few degrees below zero for most of my ski which was really nice.

Wax choice was pretty good. Perhaps better on the groomed parkway as it iced up a bit in the fresh snow while climbing up the steeper pitches. A swift kick at the tops had me freed up again though so overall not too bad. I expect most things will be groomed up tonight. Hopefully its not too warm tomorrow to make it slushy only to freeze up as the mercury plummets next week.
Jan 19 (2013-01-19) by Sarah Taber from P1 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1 Penguin Climb, #1, Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #5 (green) [36.8km], Glide Wax: Universal, Grip Wax: VR45
P1 up the Gatineau Parkway to Penguin, up the 1 to Keogan, then up Fortune Parkway to Champlain Parkway, and return via Gatineau Parkway to #5 to return to Asticou.

Slow conditions overall with not a lot of grooming - there is a lot of new snow and most of the track set was collapsing. Grip wax was sticking and the downhills were slow, particularly as the temperature increased over the afternoon. With a good grooming tonight/tomorrow and colder temperatures tomorrow it should be great for the week!
Jan 19 (2013-01-19) by Cedric Poon from P16 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: yellow, Grip Wax: red on blue
Yup, we encounter a groomer coming our way shortly after we started on R50 from P16 around 10:15 this morning. It only laid a classic track on the left or south side and the middle for skating but not the other classic track. We skied on a freshly groomed R50 up to the junction with R52 before we turned around. Didn’t see the groomer or any freshly groomed tracks on our way back. I was surprised Swix red on blue kick wax worked. What a fabulous mild day to be out.
Jan 19 (2013-01-19) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #1, #1B, #2 (blue), #33, #40 [13.2km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Has anyone seen a GROOMER today?? My route was from P12=>#40=>#24=>#1=>#1B=>#1=>#2=>#33=>#40=>P12. According to the website some of the trails were groomed 7 hours ago, I did not see any sign of that.

Trail #24 is still blocked off on the one side, there is a single track on Ridge past the intersection with #24 water tank, with a closed trail sign see picture. Trail #33 is open and good, website gives it a thumbs down???.

Trail #2 black is still closed off, #1B is good. Several people were stopped on the trails wrong wax (sticky snow). Tomorrow once everything is groomed and temperature begins to drop trails should be in great shape.
jan19.jpgEnlargeImage
Jan 19 (2013-01-19) by Garry Tarr from P2 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [19.6km], Glide Wax: CH8, Grip Wax:
A skate ski from the Relais to Mulvihill Lake and back on the parkways. No sign of any grooming since the big dump of snow last night below Mica. Churning up the Pink Lake Hill through maybe 10cm of fresh powder was quite a workout. Above Mica there was very recent partial grooming on the CP and conditions greatly improved. There was also grooming on the GP heading towards P5. The grooming covered one classic track and a large swath of the skate lane. The packed skate lane was still settling, but allowed for very nice controlled (if somewhat slow) skiing. I went with rilled warm weather skis, which was a mistake since conditions were definitely dry powder. If you ski late this afternoon stay above Mica (e.g. P6, P5, P8 etc)
Jan 18 (2013-01-18) by Katie McMahon from P7 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1B [12.3km], Glide Wax: Vauhti Blue, Grip Wax: Vauhti base binder covered with Vauhti Fluoro Carrot
Moderately good conditions for classic on Ridge Road today. Snow is very abrasive so make sure you have some type of base binder on your skis. Parkway looks perfect. Also 1B is now groomed! Yay! Not all branches on Ridge are cut completely out of the way so watch out for those rogue branches and protect your eyes! Happy skiing :)
Jan 18 (2013-01-18) by Jo-Ann Holden from P6 grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd [8.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Same old ..... At 16:00 the NCC website claimed the Champlain parkway was groomed "5 hours ago" (which would make it 11:00 a.m. by my reckoning) but as of 3:00, when I finished skiing, it was still as stale and neglected as it was yesterday and the day before that. When the snow contains as much ice as it does now, and when the temperatures drop at night the trails need regular attention. Before the thaw arrived it really didn't matter too much if the trails were freshly groomed. It matters now. Let's at least have the parkways kept in good shape - this is pretty basic.
Jan 18 (2013-01-18) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1, #1B [12.3km], Glide Wax: LF4 green, Grip Wax:
Went out mid afternoon for a recovery ski when things had warmed up....conditions were very fast and most enjoyable for skate skiing. There had been earlier grooming on Fortune parkway, Ridge (#1), 1b, and on #2. There was a light ocvering of yesterday's snow on a hard base.

Of course, by this time of the day, there are ruts to factor in especially on the Parkway and as evening falls in the flat light.
One problem to note...at the early part of the uphill just past Shilly Shally on the way to Huron (we senior folk know it as Khyber Pass), a sharp wooden spike about two inches long stuck out of the snow right in the middle of the trail...I could not remove it. Caution advised!
Jan 17 (2013-01-17) by Jo-Ann Holden from P6 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy, MacKenzie-King Rd [8.9km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
A beautiful afternoon, although very chilly. The snow was so slow (my waxing didn't help) that I came to a dead stop half way down the Black Lake hill!!
As mentioned by others there was a dusting a snow on top of a previous grooming.

BE VERY CAREFUL IF YOU ARE DESCENDING THE BLACK LAKE HILL in the classic tracks, and particularly if you are going faster than I was (which is likely!). There is a serious hazard in the form of a thick branch sticking out at thigh to waist level on the outside track about 2/3 of the way down the hill. You will certainly hit it square on if you are in that track! I tried to remove it but it is firmly entrenched. The mystery is how the classic tracks were groomed while the log was stuck in place. I will phone Demsis first thing in the morning to report it, but if you are skiing tonight, beware!
Jan-17-Beware.jpgEnlargeImage
Jan 17 (2013-01-17) by Paul Jaenicke from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #26, #29 (alternative) [19km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Pretty much the same report as Dave, opted to head straight to the wooded trails to stay out of the wind, conditions were slower for classic today, but still pleasant.

Here is a heads up on the NCC website, I spoke to someone from Demsis today, all the NOT recommended trails (with the Red icon) that were track set in the last hours or few days are NOT recommended because they are deemed to icy to ski on.

The ones that have 300 + days on them means they have not been cleared of trees and branches yet. The backcountry trails seems will be cleared in the coming weeks without cutting too many trees down since those trails are usually narrow anyways.
Jan 17 (2013-01-17) by David Brownrigg from P1 grooming 
Trails Skied: #5 (green), #26 [6.3km], Glide Wax: F4 Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Green
headed out from Asticou and skied 5, 26 and sections of the Gat pkwy in the area. No fresh grooming to be found but at least a centimetre or 2 of fresh snow on top of an icy base made for skiable albeit slow classic conditions. If you're looking to get out of the wind and onto some wooded trails during our cold snap for the next few days this area is in great shape with hardly any debris on the tracks.
Jan 17 (2013-01-17) by Jim Smith from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [21km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
This morning, surprisingly good skate skiing from P5 on to the Gatineau and Champlain parkways....no grooming, but a centimeter or two of fine grained snow over a hard base provided soft enough conditions for good glide under a bright sun.
In some spots, the blowing crosswind has made the surface abrasive.
At the end of the session, I checked out Penguin...just enough snow cover to climb comfortably.

The chilly weather and abrasive, rather dry conditions call for green wax as well as a hardener.
And do not forget to add a layer of clothing!
Jan 16 (2013-01-16) by Jim Smith from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [19.6km], Glide Wax: LF7, Grip Wax:
Excellent skate skiing on freshly groomed parkways from P5 to Champlain parkway and up to Fortune Grooming was only on one side, but that was enough...the sugar snow made for fast, easy gliding.

The Gatineau parkway from the Champlain parkway intersection to Asticou had not been groomed as yet; surface was hard and icy.

Classic skiers, note that #15 had also been groomed....
Jan 16 (2013-01-16) by David Brownrigg from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [6.5km], Glide Wax: F4 Universal, Grip Wax: Swix Blue
Encountered fresh grooming on the Fortune Pkwy from P10 up to the Champlain Lookout. Decided not to return via Ridge as conditions there were pitiful during my ski there yesterday. Classic conditions overall were good but somewhat spoiled by a skate skier or two who consistently skied over the inside track almost the whole way. Jeez, the pkwy is wide enough for both types of skiers...no need for this..
Jan 16 (2013-01-16) by Jo-Ann Holden from P1 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #27, #29 (alternative), #29 (shared) [14.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
It was a gorgeous day. 5 stars for the scenery and the weather, but 2 stars for the grooming, or rather the lack of it. There was a groomer spending a great deal of time packing the snow for the upcoming Coupe Skinouk - all appropriate and necessary. However the trails for pass holders were neglected today except for a small narrow strip leading to the parkway. Anyone who is over 40 and losing the cushioning in their knees will have a keen appreciation for the extra iciness and hard, rutted surface of the trails. Yesterday, when grooming was recent, conditions were fabulous. Today, when many, many skiers have packed down the trails, and when the snow has re-hardened, conditions were disappointing. As Megan pointed out yesterday, the Gatineau Park ski conditions page lists the conditions as either good or bad. Conditions were on the low end of middling today. On the plus side, a very large sign has been erected near Asticou, directing walkers to the walking trail. Based on the boot marks on trail 29, it may not be having much of an effect, but at least it is highly visible.
A more upbeat photo from today's ski can be seen on www.musicianonskis.ca/blog
Jan-16-No-Walking.jpgEnlargeImage
Jan-16-Stale-Grooming.jpgEnlargeImage
Jan 16 (2013-01-16) by Karl Saidla from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Fortune Pkwy, #1 [12.5km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF Violet, Grip Wax: Vauhti Violet Klister mixed wtih Vauhti Universal Klister.
Where things were groomed overnight, conditions are excellent with fairly soft sugary granular for both skate and classic. Note that when I skied this morning the Champlain Parkway between Fortune and Gatineau Parkways had not yet been groomed. It is still skiable the tracks are old and icy and the skate lane is somewhat rutted.
Jan 15 (2013-01-15) by Paul Jaenicke from P3 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #26, #29 (alternative) [19km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Short ski outing from P3, via Gatineau parkway, #26, #29, #5 and back. Good job from Demsis with the grooming today. Although the website reports only 9% of trails recommended probably because of debris on the trails mostly, the trails I skied today #26, #29, #5 all had fresh grooming, no debris and very skiable.

So with all that said anything that is groomed out of the woods is probably the best bet for now, until we get a fresh coating of new snow. The prior design of the website listed the trail conditions as good, fair, and not recommended, now its good or bad nothing in between.
Jan 15 (2013-01-15) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #24, #40, #1 (blue) [16.6km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
This is an addendum to my previous report for today....just to clarify....I failed to mention that I transitioned from Ridge road to #40 via #24 which was also freshly groomed although there were dirty and littered sections.

Sorry for any confusion!
Cheers!
Jan 15 (2013-01-15) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #40, #1 (blue) [14.9km], Glide Wax: LF8, Grip Wax:
Freshly groomed, sugar snow made for great skate skiing from P10 up the Fortune Parkway, then on ridge road to #40.

#40 was also freshly groomed all the way to the Meech lake parking lot. It was fun to get the change of scenery. However, you have to pay attention for small branches, wood chips, sawdust where work has been done to clear fallen trees and branches. Pay particular attention to the occasional sharp-ended piece of wood embedded in the trail.
Jan 15 (2013-01-15) by Ron Lorenson from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #1 (green) (#2 - #24) [15.6km], Glide Wax: Swix LF7, Grip Wax: n/a
Skated: P10 => FP => CP => lunch at Huron => #1 => Water tank on #24 => #1
=> CP => FP = P10

As Megan has reported Demsis has turned the parkways into great skate-able sugar snow.

The parkways are really the place to ski: #3 is open but is unskiable; #1 from Huron to #1b has been trackset but has a lot of debris; #1 from #1B to #2 is skiable but rutted and uneven; #1 from #2 to #24 has been freshly trackset and was a pleasure; #24 was trackset but seemed to have quite a bit of debris. #1B is still closed. #1 after the water tank is still closed.

On the way back the FP was suffering from the the traffic and was becoming harder and more rutted.
Jan 15 (2013-01-15) by Megan McTavish from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, #1 [11.1km], Glide Wax: vauhti blue, Grip Wax: vauhti super binder or blue klister covered with carrot or K-line violet (bring a few toppers...this is a guess)
The groomers were out in full force this morning chopping up that ice and making a nice soft (a bit sugary) surface for us. We skated and they had done the parkway and Ridge road by 9am. Everything looks to be in pretty good shape.
Jan 14 (2013-01-14) by Florence Lehmann from P19 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Pictures didn't work out on previous report.
50-lacPhilippe.jpgEnlargeImage
50-pastMousseau.jpgEnlargeImage
50-ruts.JPGEnlargeImage
Jan 14 (2013-01-14) by Florence Lehmann from P19 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #50 [14.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
I stayed overnight at Wanakiwin Yurt. I won't report on last night's condition. It's old news.
Weather: it was quite warm overnight and pouring rain for quite a while, keeping me and my friends awake for some time. Before we set off, it was getting colder and iciing over, it hailed and then snowed a bit.
Before leaving the yurt we went for a short ski a little past Lac Mousseau then back to P19. So...
From the yurt to Lac Mousseau, the trail was quite dirty in the wooded areas: lots of debris--pine needles and twigs, and we removed some bigger branches in a few spots. Snow wasn't quite as dirty towards P19. Just after Mousseau, we saw a nice white stretch (unfortunately we had to head back).
Snow condition: slow where snow was dirty, otherwise fast with the dusting of fresh powder overtop a hard, icy base.
Classic tracks have suffered and were shallow in some spots. A skidoo has left ruts and a bit of a ridge in the skate lane in the middle. Classic skiing was a challenge, especially for grip waxing. It was hard to get good kick and you gathered lots of debris.
At the junction of #50 and #54, there's a large, icy patch as a result of melting snow running down the slope.
We need snow. Demsis should be able to improve conditions where snow was cleaner, but they won't do miracles where there's lots of debris.
Cheers.
skiparc14janv13.jpgEnlargeImage
skiparc14janv13(2).jpgEnlargeImage
skiparc14janv13(3).jpgEnlargeImage
Jan 14 (2013-01-14) by Paul Jaenicke from P2 grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #27, #26, #29 (shared) [19.7km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
I wanted to give this report ** 1/2 stars, skiable for classic but not great. I will say that on trail #29, 26, 27, and #5 hardly any debris on these trails to mention, but they are hard, icy, but like Andy mentioned nothing that a good grooming wont solve.

Also in this area of the park the poles would sink down, but regardless its still nice to get out even for a short run. Part of trail # 29 in the open field area was flooded as you can see in the first picture. The skating lane on the Gatineau parkway was hard packed, somewhat uneven, with the odd icy patch.
jan14a.jpgEnlargeImage
jan14b.jpgEnlargeImage
Jan 14 (2013-01-14) by Andy Jonyas from P3 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [11.5km], Glide Wax: Unknown, Grip Wax:
Lets just say that its skiable and just barely. Skated with very little grip on a hard base which is in the process of icing up. Feet hurt from sort of steering over bumps and going downhill could turn dangerous if you were not paying attention and got got into an icy groove. Lets hope Demsis grinds it all up once it gets colder tonight.
Jan 14 (2013-01-14) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [14.6km], Glide Wax: LF8, Grip Wax:
After the unseasonably warm, rainy weather, the skating section of parkways has hardened considerably from P10 to Champlain lookout as well as in the other direction, to Black's hill. I stayed in the middle of the parkways where the surface was fairly flat as there is considerable skidoo and heavy machine tracking to either side.
A very, very light snow shower made the upper portion of the parkway more enjoyable.
Poles did not sink through the surface on the way to the Champlain lookout, but this was not the case from the Fortune road intersection to Black's hill.

Classic tracks are somewhat eroded, bu skiable.
Jan 14 (2013-01-14) by Matt McInnes from P3 grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [11.5km], Glide Wax: Yellow (should have been purple probably), Grip Wax:
Pre-work ski was reasonable given all the rain. Conditions are a little stange with very fast/ nearly icy spots in the center of the parkway, but the edges are soft. Tricky at points as your poles will break through and throw off your balance.

The smaller trails seem to be in rougher shape for now. Best to stick to the parkways and pray for snow!
Jan 13 (2013-01-13) by Ingrid Hagberg from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [26.7km], Glide Wax: Vauhti Blue, Grip Wax:
Went for a nice rainy ski this morning. The parkway is still in good shape, but a little soft in some spots, so poles may sink through. Ridge Road is in a little rougher shape, with a lot more debris down, but it's much firmer. Despite the rain, there's still a good amount of snow left on the trails. Keep up the snow dance!
Jan 12 (2013-01-12) by Jo-Ann Holden from P2 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #27, #29 (alternative), #29 (shared) [3.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
A short, late day skate ski on what must be the flattest trails in the park: 27, 29 and a stretch of the Gatineau Parkway which excluded any hills. Such a pleasant ski! The snow was about as nice as it could have been for skating - fast and easy to control.

Just one comment about snowshoers walking on the trails. The trail markers seem a bit confusing in this area. I met a family snowshoeing on ski trail 26 They had honestly tried to find the snowshoe trail but had been pretty much dumped out on the ski trail when the snowshoe trail vanished.
Jan 12 (2013-01-12) by Katie McMahon from P10 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #1, #32, #3, #14 [19.9km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF violet, Grip Wax: n/a
Despite the rain and overbearing fog, skiing today was great! The parkway and ridge road were newly groomed (so the ice was chopped up providing excellent control). Ridge Road was good as long as you don't mind skiing over some branches and twigs. Burma was "groomed" but as Vesta described it, more like someone decided to drive a skidoo through the woods, but still a fun little off-roading ski. If you are like me and love these mild temperatures, get out there, cause it is surprisingly fast! All the work going into trail clearing and maintenance has been incredible this season and much appreciated! Enjoy :)
Jan 12 (2013-01-12) by Garry Tarr from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , North Loop [4.8km], Glide Wax: CH8, Grip Wax:
According to the Gatineau Park official website, the parkways had been groomed for skating this morning. However, when I got to the Doldrums around 9:30AM I found only one pass had been done, giving a center lane just wide enough to skate on. Of course given the amount of traffic on the Doldrums this meant one had to pull over to the side frequently to allow skiers coming the other way to pass. The classic tracks (and the border near them) were hard and glazed with freezing rain. I can't imagine how anyone could classic ski on such a surface. The congestion was compounded by about four groups of Chelsea Nordic skiers practicing skating. At one place they had placed cones across the track to create a slalom course. They were very polite, but they really shouldn't have been blocking the road in such a busy area on Saturday morning. I next skied up the Gatineau Pkwy from P8 to Mica. Conditions here were much better. There had been two groomer passes, creating a nice wide skate lane. However, the classic tracks had not been touched, and were still completely glazed over with wet ice. There was also far less traffic on this section, making for a very pleasant exercise skate ski. The grooming appeared to extend up the Champlain Pkwy and also down towards Pink Lake. The temperature was exactly 0C when I started, and the snow was hardly wet. I felt a blast of warm air coming in at the ridge above P5, so the melt will probably begin this afternoon. In the meantime skate skiing is great- but stay away from the Doldrums! I found CH8 and rilling gave very fast skis.
Jan 11 (2013-01-11) by Garry Tarr from P8 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, North Loop, #1 [14.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Skiing up the Fortune Pkwy and along Ridge yesterday afternoon I noticed that the "danger" tape had been removed from Burma, and the trail appeared to be open. I didn't try it since conditions were fairly icy (largely due to refrozen slush bombs that had fallen from trees) but with temperatures going above freezing tonight it might be worth checking out tomorrow once the snow softens. 1B is still closed.
Jan 11 (2013-01-11) by Matt McInnes from N/A grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy [11.5km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
In case any of you need additional motivation to get out skiing:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/health-and-fitness/fitness/the-jaw-dropping-benefits-of-cross-country-skiing/article6747824/
Jan 11 (2013-01-11) by Jim Smith from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: Champlain Pkwy [8.1km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
With the recent grooming, excellent skate skiing from P5 to Champlain Parkway and onward to Fortune ....As this was an easy day, I turned back at the top of Black's under a continuous but light rain.

The classic tracks iced up on the way back, but the skating surface remained soft despite some light glazing due to Demsis' earlier grooming efforts. Thanks!!

Fluctuating temps and some nasty precipitation over the next day or so... the Weather Network forecast suggests that we might see some clearing and warm conditions tomorrow afternoon....
Jan 11 (2013-01-11) by Karl Saidla from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , Gatineau Pkwy [12.9km], Glide Wax: Vauhti LF Violet, Grip Wax: Vauhti Violet Klister covered with Vauhti K-Line Silver
I finally managed some ski commuting today-from P5 to Relais Plein Air with some detours. Then I took the bus to town. The parkways had been groomed on one side for skate and classic. We would strongly recommend skiing where it has been recently groomed as it is rutted and icy elsewhere. Where there is grooming there is great skiing-fast, smoooth, and just soft enough to feel nice under your feet.
Jan 11 (2013-01-11) by Matt McInnes from P3 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy, #5 (green), #27, #26, #29 (alternative) [19.5km], Glide Wax: Red, Grip Wax:
Fresh grooming was done on the whole of the Southern trail system with the exception of number 15 which was not groomed as of about 7am.

The grooming nicely softened things up compared with yesterday which made for very nice skiing (for now!).
Jan 10 (2013-01-10) by Jim Smith from P5 grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [26.7km], Glide Wax: HF8, Grip Wax:
Beautiful sunny day!
Great skating on the Gatineau and Champlain parkways on a groomed, firm surface.
However, Ridge road from Keogan back toward P7 and P5 was very tricky! No recent grooming; some sections were quite hard and icy, and this had some recreational skiers apprehensive. As well, clumps of snow shed from overhanging branches had formed into mini moguls or speed bumps along the way....these can really throw you off balance. Add to this a lot of twigs, small branches and fallen ice bits....quite the mix. I had to continually scan the way ahead and refrain from any aggressive skiing for that section.

If there is no grooming by this evening on Ridge, I would suggest sticking to the parkways after dark.
Jan 10 (2013-01-10) by Megan McTavish from P5 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: Gatineau Pkwy , #1 Penguin Climb, #1, Gatineau Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, #15 (black) [31.5km], Glide Wax: Vauhti blue, Grip Wax: Violet klister covered with Vauhti K12 (silver) or K9 (red)
We did a loop this morning starting at P5 and going up #15 to P6, then up Blacks to the T and back Ridge Road. The parkways have be refurbished for skate and the classic tracks are in great condition. The smaller trails have a lot of ice and debris from the trees which fell yesterday when the temperatures were warmer, making for tricky skiing.
As for grip, we used violet klister covered with K12 (silver). It was pretty good at the beginning but wore off. I would suggest adding some blue klister or binder and bringing along the K9 (red). Also, put the wax on nice and thick!
Jan 9 (2013-01-09) by Paul Jaenicke from P12 grooming grooming   photos!
Trails Skied: #24, #40 [4.4km], Glide Wax: , Grip Wax:
Skied out from P12 that just opened today, lots of tree damage on trail #40. ONLY part of trail #24 is open , the first section from the Water tank to the intersection with #40. Ridge road grooming also ends at the water tank.

Trail still closed in that area :#2 black, #33 and #38 and #24 after the junction with #40. Many small icicles were falling from the trees, along with some snow and twigs.

The conditions have changed since noon, the snow was quite soft and sticky at times, which made for slower conditions.
jan9a.jpgEnlargeImage
jan9b.jpgEnlargeImage
jan9c.jpgEnlargeImage
Jan 9 (2013-01-09) by Jim Smith from P10 grooming 
Trails Skied: Fortune Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy, Champlain Pkwy [14.6km], Glide Wax: HF8, Grip Wax:
Great, controlled skating on a thin lawyer of groomed high-humidity snow over a firm, compact surface....I used the HF wax and it made a huge difference.
At noon, P10 was mostly full except for the middle of the lot...P8 was also very busy.
Jan 9 (2013-01-09) by Ingrid Hagberg from P7 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: #1, #2 (blue), #30 [8.9km], Glide Wax: Vauhti Blue, Grip Wax:
Excellent skiing today! There was fresh grooming at the end of Ridge Road, which lead to some softer conditions. The rest was quite firm. Some trails are still being cleared so please do not ski these with workers there. Also be aware that several smaller trails are closed, so you may want to plan an alternate route.
Jan 9 (2013-01-09) by Ron Lorenson from P8 grooming grooming 
Trails Skied: North Loop [3.4km], Glide Wax: Swix LF8, Grip Wax:
Skated two iterations of the Doldrums. Near perfect conditions - firm, high-humidity snow with lots of control and glide. People doing classic seemed to be having a great day as well with nobody having a bad wax day - the high humidity snow would probably react best to a fluor grip wax. The tracksetting was flawless.

At 11:00 AM P8 was 80% full.