WINTER: One of Extremes

In a word . . . unusual. Extreme Weather – We were terribly warm in January, which can usually be our coldest month. Then came February and I learned a new term – Polar Vortex. We used to just call it an Arctic Cold Front, but a Polar Vortex sounds much more exciting and sexy. Usually, we can get C-O-L-D for a couple of nights and then warm back up to our typical winter temperatures of -20 C at night and -10 C during the day. Perfect winter conditions. Not in February. Back-to-back COLD fronts hit us and put us … Continue reading

A Bit of a Cold Snap

After an incredibly warm Holiday Season and start of the New Year, Old Man Winter came back with a vengeance this past week. We hit a low of -35 C one night, with the remainder hovering between -25 and -30 C. Daytime temperatures were actually not bad up here in the mountains – ‘warming up’ (it’s all relative!) to between -15 and -10 C. Usually calm, sunny days and crystal-clear nights. I understand from Chris that the prairies did not fare so well . . . Machines – and other ‘moving’ parts like my hands and knees – tend not … Continue reading

SNOW SEASON

The busy Busy Season is over at the cabins – at least until the Holiday Season – and we’re into Getting-Ready-for-Winter Season. Our annual Fall Wood Weekend was a resounding success thanks to Richard, Matthew, Elizabeth, Angie, Mike, Iona, Chris and Val and my two faithful volunteers Amy and Nick. Fair weather and long days allowed us to bring in enough firewood to see us through until late winter/early spring.  The only serious casualty was Amy’s pinky finger . . . that decided (of its own accord, of course) to test the power of our new 22-ton hydraulic log splitter.  … Continue reading

In Like a Lion . . .

The first weekend in March was accompanied by a major winter storm across most of central and southern Alberta.  According to The Weather Network, a strong low pressure system developed around Rocky Mountain House and sucked in the moisture-laden system from the West Coast that had been pummeling British Columbia with heavy rain.  The moisture landed here as snow.  A LOT OF SNOW!  By the time it quit snowing Sunday evening, we had accumulated almost TWO FEET of new snow. Guests throughout February and the Storm Weekend have enjoyed cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in good snow conditions.  Our Australian family … Continue reading

Hectic Holidays . . .

2012 come and gone, and the world didn’t end on the Winter Solstice.  I sat on my rocks overlooking Munn Creek and waited for it . . . rather disappointing, eh? We’ve had a full house at the cabins over the Christmas/New Years holidays, with guests taking time to celebrate at a slower pace up here. Cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, tobogganing/bum-sliding and snow-fort-building have occupied our guests during our short daylight hours.   Spending quality time with one’s family and/or partner, away from other distractions, is what the holidays are all about up here . . . At least, that’s what I think! … Continue reading

CLEARING TRAIL

With gorgeous snow conditions and the premier power saw man (Chris) coming in for the weekend, it was time to tackle clearing the remainder of the “Side-Hill” trail and George’s horse trail down to connect to the Munn Creek Trail.  Chris’ girlfriend, Val, was burdened with homework and had to stay behind – keeping the fires going in the cook house and cabins.  Our repeat guests, Maegan and Anna, opted for much-needed “down time” from their demanding schedules. A cold start to the work on Saturday, but bundled up and hard physical labor soon warmed things up.  Chris and I … Continue reading

Rock Lake Trails Groomed and Track-set

With a couple of inches of new snow yesterday and mild temperatures today, I spent the day re-grooming and track-setting trails down at Rock Lake for cross-country skiing.  It’s 13 km from the cabins down to Rock Lake, with track set down my 3-km road as well as the next 10 km to the Lake.  The ski track is on the far right-hand side of the Rock Lake Road . . . surely (hopefully?) there will be no yahoos in quads or pickups who would deliberately run a tire track down the middle of my ski trail this time! I … Continue reading

Soft ‘Shoeing, Hard Skiing – LIFE IS GOOD!

We have enough snow to snowshoe, although I didn’t get any trails track-set for cross-country skiing before guests arrived last Saturday for the Remembrance Day long weekend. Chris had come in Friday night to give me a hand getting the ski-doo out and running for the season. Best laid plans . . . Mark and Becci opted for a short Saturday afternoon jaunt on snowshoes up the little valley towards the base of the mountain. That trail had been ‘shoed before, so the going was relatively mild. Jon and Karen took advantage of a warm, cozy cabin and decided R&R … Continue reading

First snowshoe of the season

With guests arriving on Friday for a weekend get-away, I made the trip into civilization on Thursday to pick up fresh supplies.  Lots of wildlife were out and about that day, including several grouse, a group of Mule Deer, a few White-tailed Deer and two Golden Eagles slumming with the ravens on a road kill. The temperature was exceptionally mild for the weekend, and Cheryl and Paul were keen to try a short snowshoe trek.  So, down to Rock Lake where the ‘shoeing would be relatively easy, and on to the flat terrain around the Equestrian Overflow, Jackson Creek and … Continue reading

Oh man – do we have SNOW!!

The end of October brought a dump of snow!  Always appreciated and I do love snow . . .but, oh my achin’ back. I’ve been shoveling and blowing snow for the past two days, along with trying to get a snow-track in for our 3-km trail.  The snow blower works just fine . . .until we get above -5C.  Then the blower just pushes snow, and it’s faster to shovel. The Snow Buntings and Pine Grosbeaks are back and delightful to watch (no, these aren’t my photos – courtesy Google Image Search). It’s a town day tomorrow, with guests coming … Continue reading