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XC Ski: Great Divide

Why hike in snow, when you can ski in it instead! Given the tonnes of snow forecast for the mountains this coming week, there should definitely be trails for skiing on. I'll decide closer to the day of, but likely Cascade Valley, Peterlougheed or Lake Louise, and geared towards people who've cross country skied before, ie. those who already know how to snowplow and herringbone. Suggestions for locations welcome.

Update: The only place still track setting is Moraine Lake Road and the Great Divide up at Lake Louise, so we'll head off there. We'll ski the Great Divide to actually stretch our legs.

Note: Location may change, or event may be cancelled depending upon the conditions.

Rating: XC Ski (D3)
Distance: 20 km
Elevation gain: Gently rolling hills
Time: 4 - 5 hours skiing (+ driving time; 1.5-2h one way)

Additional info:


  • XC skis, boots, poles, waxes (as necessary)
  • Banff Park Pass (if you have one, if we go into the park)
  • Bear Spray (if you have it) - apparently they're starting to be sighted
  • Proper seasonal wear (dress in layers, mitts, toque, snow pants etc, spare socks)
  • Lunch, snacks and water (+ tea/coffee)
  • Sun glasses, sunscreen, SPF-rated chap stick
  • No jeans, no cotton clothing of any kind!
  • No camelbacks/hydration packs (lines freeze)

Equipment can be rented at a variety of places, including the University of Calgary Outdoor Center or MEC. If renting, have equipment ready and with you at the start time.

We will meet at the in-Calgary meeting point and carpool from there. Drive the TransCanada to Lake Louise. Head south, past the village and up the hill towards the lake itself, turning right at the Great Divide parking lot. (Google Maps)

You must sign a trip waiver and contact information form to attend this event. The event organizer will have these for you.

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  • Erika

    Ack, the road report is looking pretty awful for the drive out between Calgary and Banff, and the webcams seem to confirm that. I know there are 4WD and snow tires between the group, but I don't think its worth the risk. Sometimes winter weather can be like this to outings. I'd cancel the trip, but if others want to go out, feel free.

    April 14, 2013

  • Erika

    I've called into the info centers, and it sounds like Lake Louise is the only place still tracksetting. We'll head off to the Great Divide for a decent 20km ski. Reminder: If you don't know how to snowplow/herringbone, this trip is not for you. See you tomorrow at the parking lot!

    April 13, 2013

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