Moraine Lake Road, Nov. 2014

November 16, 2014, at 01:00 AMerika

A beautiful blue sky day greeted us... you know after the sun got up. Met at Shouldice bright and early as I had to return to the city by 6 pm for an evening gathering. It was just three of us heading off to get a good ski in up Moraine Lake road. The trail was fairly good, even if the snow wasn't too deep. Andrea found the only rocky patch, which was about a foot long in the trail. The highlight of the day: huge frost on the tree branches, sparkling against the sun between the trees. So gorgeous! Read more...

We met at the Shouldice arena at 8am, and Brad was more than happy to drive us up to Lake Louise. I would've been fine, but it was nice to have the break and take in the scenery. The mountains were snow-capped, and we had a colourful array of clouds as the sun rose. Pinks, yellows, oranges. There hadn't been snow since the Thursday prior, but the cold temperatures had forced what snow there was to stick around. One post on was hoping hoar frost might help with the accumulation, and it looked like a snowmobile had attempted to put in some corduroy and tracks when not excessively thin coverage.

After a quick pit-stop at the Village for a washroom break, we headed up to the trailhead. There was amble parking when we first arrived, though it quickly disappeared by the time we were putting our skis on. Classic skiing for all of us, and Andrea and I had our skis waxed from the day before. It still didn't mean we kept up with Brad, but I know I was getting some gliding in, which is always delightful. :)

Some chitchatting, but there seemed to be a strong push to get up to the end, and then head back down again. Lots of stop breaks for me, trying to work out what good layering was - too cold, too hot, cold fingers, cold nose. Hopefully the body continues to adjust to the winter conditions so its less of an issue in upcoming skis.

Gorgeous blue sky all the way up. The sun is sufficiently low in the sky that it was only just peeking out between the trees along the way up. It made for some breathtaking conditions. Perhaps this is part of the reason why sun screen is less necessary in the early and bulk of the xc ski season, and more important as March rolls around. Couldn't figure out whether sunglasses - which had a wee of a time fogging up - were helpful or a hindrance.

And there was certainly hoar frost on the branches of the bushes and trees along the trail. Not so much at the end where it stops being trackset, but definitely in the cooler areas along the way up. Amazingly gorgeous. I couldn't figure out whether to stop and take a picture - I'm pretty sure my little iPhone wouldn't have done it justice. I must learn to stop an enjoy and revel in the environment, rather than appreciate its gorgeous beauty while continuing to seek out new lands. Or perhaps its just a different style of appreciation. I suspect my fellow skiers have started to recognize that while I need a bit of a workout, I certainly love the beauty I take in along the way. Always a good day in the mountains - provided you bring the right gear.

I munched on lunch up at the turn-around point, and while I suggested continuing on to the lake, it seemed like our driver had had enough (possibly cold) and was ready to be heading back to Calgary. Perhaps I'll drag Andrea out sometime in the future (2015 - this year's unfortunately already booked up) and we'll go check out what it looks like beyond the trackset area. Back to the car by 2pm, and we were on our way home to Calgary. It was weird seeing the TransCanada in the middle of the day. Especially when there are so many things that one can do in the mountains. :) We played "name that mountain" on the way back - so fun! Between the three of us, we're actually getting quite good at it. A gorgeous ski and afternoon out. Can't wait for the next one!

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