Skiing in Gatineau Park this Weekend!
By: Team XC Ottawa (2008/11/28)
With all the wet heavy snow the Gatineau Park has received this week (>30cm) the ski conditions are great! The trees however are under extreme tension, burdened with a heavy snow load. There are lots of branches that have already broken, and many more that may break under the current snow load, especially if there is any wind this weekend.
This situation can be dangerous to skier. If you plan to ski `hors-piste` (backcountry) or even just `hors-parkway` along Ridge Road be aware of the overhead danger of falling branches and trees, especially from the evergreens. Don't stop to rest under over hanging trees and if you hear loud cracking be careful.
Be aware of the danger, but don't let that stop you from having a great ski weekend! Ridge Road and the parkways are in great shape, though you'll want your softer camber skis as the base isn't yet firm.
Also worth noting is that there may be lots of traffic problems. There is a washout just after P8 that has traffic flow reduced to 1 lane. There a traffic light that allows a few cars through in each direction at a time. This problem will likely be fixed in another week or two, but for now getting to P9, P10 and Fortune will be slow. Skiing is possible from P6 and P7 but P5 is not open yet. No word on conditions or skiing lower in the park. (if you have any news please pass it on.)
An abundance of snow at P10, and some droopy snow covered trees.
Notice the trees leaning towards the trails?