Saturday was forecasted to be bright and sunny again. The temperature was minus 24 when I was having breakfast, and there was a moderate wind blowing. Perfect weather for an all day ski. Hmmm maybe not ...
Sparrow Lake area was where we would ski today in the north area off of Orimat Road. There was ample space to park where the road began. Snow was looking a bit thin, so our route might have some areas where we would have to walk across the open rocks.
Ponds were well frozen, and the few cms of new snow kept conditions from being too slick. We looped around the various ridges and ponds, eventually forgetting how bitterly cold it was. The solid conditions made climbing the ridges more attractive than skiing the ponds. Ascending and descending took far less energy than when breaking trail in deep snow. We were making good time, and as a result had to keep adjusting our plan for where to have lunch as it was still too early. We eventually made it to a sheltered spot off the end of a high ridge, overlooking a beaverdam. Bathed in bright sunshine, and out of the wind it actually felt warm …
After lunch, heading south, and then east now towards the car we realized conditions were just too good to pass up. No point getting out too early. While observing fresh coyote, or coywolf tracks a motion way down a pond caught my eye, and sure enough there it was. It stared at us for a minute before bounding off. A few hasty pictures, difficult to see in the bright sunlight fortunately caught it. At this point we decided to follow a few ponds to the east before again turning north. Maybe we would cross paths again with the animal as it had run easterly from us … no such luck.
The rest of the afternoon was spent skiing north towards the Orimat Road, and following the other ridges and ponds up that way. We finished the day around 3:30 PM and we on the road shortly after.
A link to pictures, videos and a map of the route