On Friday, March 27th, the birthday of Belgian painter Jan van Beers, Davinius and the pretty girl from the village posed as an Allegory of Winter from a secret location of isolation and quarantine in the Sawtooth Mountains. Could this charming picture reveal some hidden meaning concerning life and death in the coronal age where we find ourselves skating on thin ice and skiing through a mix of snow and frozen dirt, demented colours, absurd and crazy notions, a hotch-potch of ancient and modern mixed up on a single canvas? Hmmmmm… probably not. But all good things do come to an end and the ski trails are no different. The time draws nigh, repent and ski. But do so with care and forethought this weekend. At Alturas Lake on Friday, Over the Hill, the Trail to the Lake and North Cabin Trail were groomed for skate and classic. All other trails still looked good. Adam groomed at Park Creek as well.
A grooming of all Alturas skate lanes on Saturday, the 21st, was followed by one sunny day and then three days of snow showers. The new snow was plowed into submission on all trails to the east of Alturas Creek on Thursday the 26th. Resulting trails looked good, but the overall snow cover is melting back quickly and tree wells are pushing forest floor out onto the trail’s edge in numerous spots. Tread carefully and watch your speed as hidden detritus, stumps and rocks lurk just under the snowy surface. At Park Creek, Adam has returned from the isolation of his recent desert retreat and is working on sprucing up the ski trails out there as well.
On Wednesday, the 18th, all ski trails at Alturas Lake were groomed. It was sunny and warm. Tree wells crept slowly out of the woods towards the trail’s edge. A crane flew along the high pine ridge above the icy creek.
On Sunday, the 15th, all skate lanes at Alturas Lake were regroomed and looked good. An attempt was made to reset the classic tracks to the lake, however, not enough new snow had fallen for very good grooves.
On Friday, March 13th, at Alturas Lake, Over the Hill, South Loop and the Lake trail as far as the creek turnaround were graded and ginzu groomed to improve the skating lanes. Otherwise the trails are wide, flat and firm with classic tracks melted out and degraded in spots. On Saturday, snow is falling intermittently and should improve trail conditions once we groom again.
The Sawtooth Ski Festival was a great success last weekend and the organizers and the many volunteers are still recuperating and practicing social distancing while quarantined at home. Please remember, no hand shakes, hugs or kisses on the ski trail system are allowed through the end of the season.