Sunday, 28 February 2010

Drip, drip, drip

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In his last blog entry, Kenmore suggested going out for a 50k ski today as per the men at the olympics. I opted for a snowshoe hike along the Wolf trail and am satisfied that I made the right choice. Temps are rising and two layers of fleece were enough today. The new snow that fell during the week was welcome and the packed trail is plenty thick but if it stays this warm it will melt soon enough. I enjoyed taking photos of the water drops on twigs in the forest. If you enlarge and look at the drops you can see reflection of trees in the drips, pretty cool. On the ridge I was looking for a section where there was a frozen cedar tunnel when I last hiked here after Christmas. Good news is that the ice melted and the tree is back to standing up straight as trees are supposed to do! A nice day to be out but I hope winter sticks around for a couple more weeks before the spring melt.

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After freezing rain:
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Wednesday, 10 February 2010

After work Rideau Canal skate

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A nice warm afternoon for a skate but that should have told me that the ice conditions would be crap. There was the occasional stretch of decent ice but mostly it was try not to wipe out in the ruts and slush. That said, there was some nice lighting in the Patterson creek area from the sun low on the horizon.

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Sunday, 7 February 2010

Super hike to King Mountain

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A beautiful sunny day for a hike with plenty of time before heading home to the couch for some super entertainment. I figured I would try a hike I had read to a popular summer hiking loop. In the summer you gain most of the elevation in your car before walking a loop with plenty of interpretive plaques. The winter route is up the escarpment from the west. It is short but plenty steep to get your blood pumping. Again the snowshoes grip was great on even the steepest slopes. I found it more uncomfortable when the trail was switching back and forth and the footholds were not flat. I managed to sit on one of the benches up top (actually I had my pick) for some water and snacks and some fine winter sunshine. Fun times on the way down. The shoes grab quite well but sometimes it is fun to just sit down and slide!

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Winter Duathlon

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With the Winter Olympics about to start I got in the spirit by getting in a two sport day on Saturday.

Rideau Canal skate

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First off it was the canal skate. While not a sanctioned event and with un-olympian conditions, I did enjoy the skate. Starting at Patterson creek I headed downtown before turning around and skating to Carleton U and then returning. The ice was not great and was bad, especially between the Bank street bridge and Dows lake as well as the last stretch down to the Rideau centre downtown. It always amazes me how it is 10 degrees colder there than the rest of the city, or perhaps it is just because I skate so fast :-)

Randomn snowshoe

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After the skate I headed up Mountain road to do some exploring on snowshoes. I basically followed various tracks in the snow for an hour or so before hitting one of the parkways in Gatineau Park. While I did not end up getting to any sort of lookout I did enjoy the hike and tested out my new boots and some steep terrain where the shoes worked great.

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