Sunday, 31 January 2010

Stroll to Carbide Wilson

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I went for a short stroll from P11 to the Carbide Wilson ruins, an abandoned mill that has an impressive waterfall beside a long vacated building. At other times of the year this is a haunt of photographers taking shots of fall folliage and the falls or a spot favored by nude sun-bathers. In the winter it is a short snow shoe hike from P11 and while the water is still powering down the falls there is plenty of ice formations and rime ice collections on rocks and nearby trees. An interesting time to visit when there are no bugs and no risk of seeing something you didn't want to see.

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Saturday, 30 January 2010

Hockey Day at the Luskville Fire Tower

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Today is hockey day in Canada, a creation of the CBC where hockey is celebrated in small towns all across the country and there are three games shown (on CBC) featuring Canadian teams. What to do to celebrate the day? Well I decided on a snowshoe up to the Luskville Fire Tower. It was killer cold (-25C) in the morning but I wasn't about to downgrade my plans and wait for warmer weather. My collection of fleeces and tocques were put to good use along with two neck warmers and an old set of ski goggles. The rain from last monday meant the first part of the trail was steep and sheer ice and snowshoes were of no use. I put them on once I got to the first lookout and there was quite a lot of snow from then on. Both creek crossings were ice and therefore a breeze. I got to the tower just in time to meet up with a guy who had skied from Camp Fortune and got him to take my picture. On the way down I met a group of four with full packs. "You must have big lunches in there" I joked. It turned out they were practicing for an upcoming trip to Mt Washington. I did the loop taking the right side trail on the way up and the left side (left side of the creek) on the way down. A great sunny but cold Canadian winter day and an awesome day to be out on a hike. I think I may suggest a hike/ski outing from the Fire Tower to P10.

PS Senator beat Habs 3-2 in overtime for their 9th straight win!!

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Sunday, 24 January 2010

To the back door of Healey

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I went for a short snowshoe today. On the map it looked like a longer hike with plenty of ups and downs but it turned out to be mostly flat with really only one hill on the trail. Not exactly good practice for some bigger mountains in the adirondacks but a nice day nonetheless. Healey cabin was packed with a big crowd milling around outside as well. On the way back to the car I detoured onto different snow surfaces as often as possible. Maybe next time out will be one of the easier scenci spots in the Adirondacks like Van Ho or Indian head.

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Saturday, 23 January 2010

Perfect Winter Day

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Today is the kind of day that makes me think we would be better off if it were winter all year long. A clear sunny day with a blanket of clean white snow all around. The temperature was just about perfect too at about -10C. I went back to the Lac Phillipe area as it is usually less busy and there were some races happening in the lower park. The tracks were fast and there is still a lot of snow up there even with the recent warm temperatures. Here's hoping the expected rain on monday does not do too much damage.

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Sunday, 17 January 2010

Half way round Lac Phillippe

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With the NFL playoffs starting at 1pm I headed out for an early ski. Hadn't yet been up to P19 so I skied from there to the other end of Lac Phillippe. The track was groomed (wow!!) and the glide was good so it was a nice trip. I toyed with the idea of heading up to Lusk cabin but decided to leave that for a later date and a nicer day. I figure I will come back and do the other half of the lake on snowshoes as it looks like a nice trail.

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Saturday, 16 January 2010

New shoes on the Wolf trail

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I bought myself a pair of snowshoes just after christmas, figuring it would be a good change of pace to try some of the showshoe trails in Gatineau instead of always xc skiing. Today was the maiden voyage. As expected the trail was a well packed path. I meant to go up the steep way and back down the flatter part but missed the right turn and did it the other way down. I love the way the snow covers up the uneven bits of rocks and roots on the trail. The sky was overcast which dulled the views but there is still some beautiful sights of ice in the trees. The temperature was quite mild so there were a lot of people out enjoying the day. I loved this mode of travel and will do a few more Gatineau trails and maybe venture down to the Adirondacks for some of the easier scenic hikes.

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Monday, 11 January 2010

Lunch at Western

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After a weekend out of town I took Monday off to stretch my legs and join the otherwise unemployed (retirees) on the ski trails. I figured P7 to Western via Ridge road would be a good trip. A bit of climbing to start and then rolling hills the rest of the way. I had the option of stopping at any one of three other cabins along the way but stuck to my original choice. Western is in a prime spot, nestled on the western edge of the escarpment with a nice bench behind it for those warmer sunny spring days. It was a shame none of my sometimes ski buddies had come out today as I aced the downhill approach with some sweet slalom turns and a sharp stop right in front of the ski rack. As I entered I was slightly bummed that the fire in the woodstove was out but then I remembered that my sandwich was not wrapped in foil anyhow. A nice day to be out, can't wait til I am one of the retirees cruising this neighborhood every day.

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Friday, 1 January 2010

New Year, more snow!

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The first day of a new year and 10 fresh cms of overnight snow, I think I am going to like this 2010!! The much needed snow was well appreciated to cover up the crusty trails and especially so in the trails other than the parkways. It sure was nice to make some first tracks in ankle deep snow on the trail down to the Brulé lookout. There was no view from the lookout due to clouds and more snow to come! I made a short stop at Huron to warm up and have a snack. There is more snow in the forecast and I hope to make the most of it this weekend!

Comparison shots of the Brulé lookout:


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Other shots from today:

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