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Monday, December 29, 2014

Our Poultry Needs Plumping

Kudos to Brad for opening new terrain - Hamlin loop is now groomed.  Also many thanks to John for all-around touch-ups and grooming out the connectors.

The chicken is looking handsome, if a bit skinny.  We need to add some snow to fatten the old girl up.  Please exercise caution up there and especially watch out for rocks !  Of course chickens eat small rocks to help their digestion, and this bird has a few too many rocks in her craw for comfort.  Lack of snow may cause this bird to start consuming skiers.

More updates to follow as soon as we start getting more snow.  Presently there is at least a chance of snow through Friday, so we just may get lucky.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Dog Love Chicken? Now More to Love...

Hank and Peter groomed the Lower and Upper Little Bauer Trails as well as the Rush Creek trails today, Friday, late morning.

The logged area was groomed as well as an alternate route for those of you who prefer your trees in the vertical mode.  Just follow the left hand veer before the bridge and you will bypass the logged-out area entirely.

That means there is more dog-friendly terrain groomed than ever before.  Good news for those of you who ski with pooches.  Plenty of canines out there today.

If you got new skis for Christmas please be advised:  If they are good skis and/or you really like them, exercise plenty of caution as there are some rocks pretty close to the surface.  Or just take your old skis out until we get a bit more snow.

Your blogger left the area today about 2:30 and it was snowing hard up high, but not so much on the Bauer Loops.  If the manpower can be mustered and we get enough additional snow then we hope to re-groom Bauer Loops and possibly add more terrain for the weekend.  Coverage is just barely adequate at present and it's not so good for the machines to run over sharp rocks with them.  Or even round rocks, for that matter.  More snow is what we really need.

But all that having been said, it's pretty darn good up there so here's hoping you can get out and enjoy it.  Temps look to be in the Arctic range for the next few days, and then another chance for snow creeping up on us.  Please.  Pretty please.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Chicken for Christmas?!

I know there are many anxious skiers awaiting the official kickoff of the 2014/15 ski season.  So here is the latest info on conditions and grooming for the area.  As of today - Tuesday 12/23 - there is almost enough snow to groom.  The good news is there is enough snow to ski on without causing irreparable harm to your skis.  There are a few thin spots for sure, but coverage is pretty good.

We simply do not have the depth of snow to justify rolling it yet though.  There is a 50% chance of snow in the forecast for Christmas day, and the daytime temps will be low enough to hang on to what we have.  So, with any luck we'll be rolling soon.

Please stay tuned to the blog for updates.  "No news" means "no grooming" took place.  I do my best to keep you all posted here, so no calls to my home phone, please (unless there is sushi or elk steak involved).

Once we do get it groomed, we ask you all to kindly refrain from walking on the groomed track.  Snowshoeing is acceptable at the far edge of the track please, not the middle.  Thank you.

So, here we go.  No matter what happens, this year has to be better than last year's ski season.  Right?

Monday, November 17, 2014

Are you well-Groomed?

Dear Blog readers:

Cold weather and snow have you dreaming of carving up some fresh corduroy at Chicken Creek Cross-Country Ski area?

Here's the thing.  We are an all volunteer outfit, including the groomers.  If you ski the area regularly then you know it's a small group of dedicated people who keep it happening, year after year.

This year could be your year to join the elite group of red-eared groomers.  We can use your help!  Please contact our grooming coordinator, Peter B, at 533-1605 as soon as you can.  We are in the process of setting up our annual groomer's gab fest (meeting) where all aspects of grooming will be considered.  We would love to have you there!  Don't "assume the groom."  Call today!  Operators are not standing by.  But you will get a call back if you want to help.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Did You Know?

Nine out of nine Nordic skiers are finding this "ski season" - and I use the term generously - to be perhaps the most pathetic in twelve years.  We did finally get enough snow to groom and Friday/Saturday the skiing was just pretty dad-gum good.  I didn't get out today but would think it may have been a bit sloppy.

Super Kudos to Brad for mounting up the mighty boss machine two days in a row to smooth out the feathers on the Chicken's back.  Word is, Brad spruced-up all the upper terrain John and Dave groomed the other day.  So everything ought to be pretty nice in the morning.

To recap, here's what is currently groomed:
Little Bauer loops, upper and lower
Rush connector
Rush Creek trail
Hamlin loop
FS road from Hamlin to Rush connector

This system looks like it could go out with a bit more rain or, being optimistic here, snow.  Either way, looks like the sun and warm are heading this way post-haste.  The next few days may be the last best chance for skiing for the near term.  I really hope that changes.  The skiing has been a refreshing break.  We went from December to March, and before long, it's really going to be March.  Ullr have mercy.

Thanks in advance for your generosity at the donation box.  Sadly we have huge expenses and scant income on account of people being reluctant to ski on rocks.  Even rock skis need some snow, after all.  Get it while you can, people.  Enjoy!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Looking good for the weekend!

Thanks to groomers John and Dave we have good conditions on a substantial amount of terrain.  Thank you gentlemen for your efforts.

Here's what's groomed:
Little Bauer; upper and lower
Rush Connector
Rush Creek Trail
Hamlin Loop
Forest Service road from Rush Connector to bottom of Hamlin

I made the ultimate sacrifice and skied it all.  It felt really good to move, I must say.
There is about an inch-and-a-half of snow on top of what got groomed, at least as of this afternoon anyway.  More snow tonight would change that and make it tougher for skaters.  Classic stride skiers will love the fact that coverage is quite good; no ground showing.  Another 6 inches of snow would hide the tops of all those little oaks which will occasionally sink their teeth into a ski.

Everything was skate-able as of this afternoon.  Less experienced skaters - like me - will find some of the trails a bit narrow in spots.  Overall though it's really good.  We'll take what we can get at this point.  No real snow for two months tends to lower one's expectations.  Luckily what we can get at this point is quite good.  Better jump on it while it lasts.  Seriously.

Please bookmark the blog and check back daily during storm cycles.  I will endeavor to keep you posted on conditions and grooming activities.

Thursday, February 6, 2014


A couple quick updates and then a ski trail condition report.

Your blogger has been hibernating; mostly to avoid getting a sunburn.  But now it looks as though winter has decided to make a cameo appearance in the great tv show of life.  Better late than never, I say.  Looks promising for the next couple days as well.  Better dust off the skis.  And if you've been driving to get to snow, this is good news indeed.

No surprise we are getting clobbered at the collection box.  Sadly we are also getting clobbered at the snowmobile repair shop for some costly dysfunctions with the equipment.  I won't bore you with details, but the tab on one machine was in excess of $800.  Not sure on the other yet but it was promising to be costly as well.

Please help out at the collection box as you can.  The chicken is getting plucked pretty hard these days.

OK, now onto the fun stuff.
According to the groomer's report the lower loops are well groomed and in very good condition.
Rush Connector, Rush Creek Trail and the road down to the top of Rush Connector are rolled but need additional work.
More grooming will take place tomorrow to finish up what was started today and additionally Hamlin may receive some attention tomorrow, time permitting.

I hope to see you on the trails!

"Give, but give until it hurts"
Mother Teresa
"Then give some more"
That one guy at the repair shop