Description: Weather forecast is better for Kananaksis. We will go x-country (nordic) skiing in the Mt Shark area, Watridge Lake trail 7.2 km return. This trip will be suitable for beginners. If you've been out once before that would be ideal, but novices are welcome. The trail will be relatively flat and straight. About 2-3 hours. If there is a mixed group we may have an option of a bit more difficulty for some people to tackle. Please indicate your skill level in the comments. If you are more experienced be prepared to share your knowledge and help the beginners. We will take a few minutes to talk about some techniques. Bring your questions. I'm not an expert but know the basics.
No meetup fees. Gas money for drivers. No park fees.
A strong level of fitness is required. Be sure to consult a physician before engaging in strenuous activity. About 2-3 hours on the trail including lunch and lazing and photos and play and general slow-poking around depending on conditions and contingencies. Our pace is slow.
These are not guided trips - organizers are not trained guides and do not accept any responsibility or liability. There is a waiver of liability form to sign at the carpool location. Please read the waiver in advance. It's found under the More drop-down list, Files section. You'll also find Tips and Safety, and FAQ there.
There are questions in the RSVP. If you don't answer, I may change your response to No, without further follow up.
We are a group - we try to hike together, be sociable, have fun, enjoy the scenery, take pictures, bask in the sun. If you don't want to wait to allow the slowest members to catch up and have a breather, this meetup group is not for you.
Attendance: Please respond early - there may be a trip minimum - 3 or 4 depending on the trip. Update your response as soon as possible, especially if you've responded that you can drive. Use the waiting list responsibly - it is automatic: if you are next on the list you will automatically be added, and informed. Please cancel as soon as possible if you can't make it even if you are on the waiting list. After 3 no-shows you may be asked to leave the group.
Late/Cancellation: If there is a last minute update, call or text (as well as meetup update) the organizer (in this case Nitin at[masked]) as soon as you know you can't make it or are running late. We'd like to not wait, nor worry. NEW: repeated cancellations after the RSVP deadline may result in no-shows. Don't take a spot from others.
We'll carpool at Dalhousie C-Train station parking lot (west end of parking lot), where you'll need to sign a waiver. We usually sort out the car pooling at the parking lot, but feel free to contact someone who has offered to drive, to save a spot.
Indicate in your RSVP comments if you can drive or need a ride - we will sort out the carpool when we gather but I try to make sure there will be enough drivers. Feel free to contact someone who has offered to drive, to save a spot.
If you respond that you can drive, we're counting on you, so be sure to update as soon as possible if you can't make it. Also please note my cell number to be able to inform us of delays etc. Note that cell service is sketchy in the mtns.
Please don't leave valuables in the car at the train station or trailhead.
Directions: Drive 45 min west on Hwy 1 to Hwy 40, south 45 min to Kananaskis Lakes Trail at the winter gate. 2 min and turn right on smith dorrien spray lakes trail. 20 min north to Mt Engadine/Mt Shark turn off. Proceed past the heli pad turnoff to the end and left into the parking lot. Total one way driving time 2h 15 min. Be sure to get an idea of where you're going if you're thinking of driving. Winter conditions.
Weather: Forecast as of Feb 7 high -12 low -22 . Usually cooler, and subject to change quickly, at higher elevations. Be prepared for any conditions - cold, hot, snow, rain, hail, sun, wind. :-) Okay, probably not hot.
Trail conditions: Good conditions.
Etiquette: Radios, ipods, etc, with speakers are not welcome. Texting, cell calls, and other electronics (other than GPS) are discouraged beyond the trailhead. Leave no trace except footprints, take nothing but pictures. Pack out all garbage including organics. Stay on the trail and watch what you step on.
Photo and Video: You should expect that you will be in pictures and short videos, and that these may be shared on the Meetup website or in other ways. Ongoing video (e.g., helmet cam) of lengthy (>1 minute) parts of the trip is NOT welcome to preserve privacy and group atmosphere. Please do share SOME highlight photos (NOT your whole collection) on the website. I reserve the right to delete duplicate, blurry, unflattering, and excess photos to provide participants with a viewable album.
Costs: Gas $$ for drivers depending on # of passengers - max vehicle expense for this trip is $60. Be prepared to spend up to 50% of the max expense in the event you are in a vehicle of only 2 people. No park entrance fees: 7/person or 20/vehicle. NA: Bring a pass if you have one.
Pets/Kids under 16: Fit kids over 12; no pets.
Equipment: Nordic skis, boots, poles (if you are a beginner, renting, get waxless skis) - you will need to bring them to the carpool location. Warm stuff.
Are you prepared to survive an unexpected night in the mountains?
minimum 1 litre of water, lunch, snacks, extra snacks, 3-4 layers including tops and bottoms that are wind/waterproof (no denim/jeans), warm socks, sun hat, toque/scarf/gloves/mitts, sunscreen, spare socks, a plastic bag for muddy boots, cash, toilet paper and a ziplock bag to carry it out, patience, a sense of humour, group-mindedness, medium sized daypack preferably with padded hip strap to carry all that stuff
Optional/suggested equipment, depending on trip and terrain and conditions and season and preference: Trekking poles, road map, trail map, compass, gaiters, flashlight/head lamp, whistle, bear spray (NO bear bells), pocket knife, first aid kit, spikes/yaktrax, sunglasses, camera, kleenex, lip balm, moleskin, mosquito repellent, waterproof sit-upon (a jacket in a garbage bag works), water purifier, a change of clothes/shoes for the car, hot drink, hand/toe warmers, pack cover, etc. You can rent outdoor gear from MEC or U of C among others for about $20