Ski Report by Peter Côté -18 Nov 2018
Snow is your friend! Early last week, as I was looking at our upcoming scheduled hike at Val David, I was becoming increasingly stressed. The area had already received a lot of snow, and more was in the forecast along with cold temperatures, so none of it was melting. By late in the week there was significant new snow, as well as a Sunday morning forecast of -16 C. There may be some people in our club who would love this, but these are not mass participation conditions.
Then somewhere I saw the possibility that the P’tit Train du Nord (PTN) might open for the weekend. We had already cancelled and rescheduled Val David once, we had cancelled Prevost and rescheduled a local walk the following week. I really did not want to be a wuss and cancel another hike! But replacing a hike with a ski day in mid-November, well that’s golden.
So, a quick consultation email went out to the executive for feedback on the idea. Respondents thought it was a great idea, so all we had to do now was to wait for the confirmation from the PTN people that they were in fact opening. That came early Saturday morning, so very quickly thereafter the Facebook posts went out announcing the change, the website was changed, and an email went out announcing that we would be skiing on November 18th on the PTN at Mont Rolland! Have we ever started that early?
In the end, 17 BTer’s managed to scramble together their gear, dust off their skis, find their wax and so on. We assembled in fits and starts at Mont Rolland on a glorious Sunday morning. The traditional group photo didn’t really happen as people were all over the place: some had arrived early, others were lined up at the little shack to pay their day access fee, and still others were on the road somewhere. Regardless, 17 of us made it out for a really early (and beautiful) start to the skiing season. Conditions were pretty darn good, sunshine was warm and comforting through the morning cold, and a really pleasant group of skiers showed up, including a couple of new members.
On the PTN you go out and you come back, it’s that simple. I think Jan and Kathy get the gold star for distance, having gone out 10 k, for a total of 20 kms, however Mickey was still out when the rest of us were leaving in our cars, so who knows what he did, Mr. Canadian Ski Marathon veteran! But most of us were content with a more leisurely start to the season, putting in 10-12 kms, then enjoying the coffee at the Café de la Gare.
It was great to see such a large group of eager Beaver Tailers out on such short notice. The season will only get better!
18 November 2018 – quick report by Linda
First ski day of the season – Le Petit train du nord starting from Mont Rolland.
There were 10, 12, or 13 people out. We are not really sure as everyone started out at different times for various reasons:
- Late night the night before
- Could not find ski stuff
- Made a last minute decision to go purely due to peer pressure
The conditions were winter like. We forget how pretty this trail can be with the sun shining. Many did about 10 km and will probably feel a few muscles tomorrow. We also forget the fact that after that last curve on the return journey there is another 1 or 2 km to go. Everyone we saw back in the parking lot had a big smile.
If you did not take advantage of the ski day today, get the gear out this week because with any luck we will be able to ski next weekend.