Friday, January 25, 2008

Lake Louise Trails

Bill and I had a great time out at Lake Louise. It is a large lake at 2300 feet in the Copper River Basin. We rented a cabin at Lake Louise Lodge so we could plug in the van from Naomi, a very nice hostess. We started out at 1pm and rode off across the lake for 4 miles then took the Crosswind Lake Trail. I have never seen a trail so busy with animal tracks, it was covered the entire way with moose, wolf, fox, rabbit, pine marten and caribou tracks. The lakes we had to cross had a hard wind crust that was rideable. After three hours of riding we turned around and made it to the lodge before eight to have a burger. At some point it had started snowing on us on the way back. I was happy that it took us as long to go out as it took to come back keeping a steady pace 5 mph with a soft trail and a loaded bike. The next morning there was 2-3 inches of fresh snow on the ground. I wasn't sure if we would be able to ride with the new snow on top of the wind drifts. After breakfast we decided to give it a try and headed out on the lake trail that follows the length of the first lake for about 8 miles. The lake system is over 20 miles long.
The pedaling was slow, but it was rideable, the lighting was flat and it seemed like riding on a white cloud without a point of reference. I was following for a while, then it was my time to brake trail. I was having vertigo looking down where my front tire was moving through the snow. I decided to look out far ahead to the next marker and that seemed to work. I felt for the packed part of the trail under the fresh snow with the front tire. Gently moving from side to side to stay on the hardest part of the trail. Finding the best line can be difficult on lakes or rivers where snowmachines spread out even more so with flat light.
Later a little blue hole in the sky appeared above us where we could see more contoures in the snow.

There is cabins all around the lake on the shores and of course it wasn't a weekend either. But we sure had a great time. Temperature was down to -17 F and just below 0 F the second day with a quartering wind.

Lake Louise is a great place for winter biking and we didn't see anyone on the trail the first day and then a couple of snowmachines the second day. The local people were amazed to see someone on fattired bikes headed out on the trails. They have a 15 foot wide groomer and groom over 100 miles of trails regularly. This year has been a low snow year out there and today was the second time they took it out on the trails.


Driving in the Hippie Van we are always dressed for outside temperatures since it doesn't make much heat and you are sitting still. It is part of our training.

in the morning on Glenn Highway

cabin at Lake Louise Lodge

Frosty finish to a good ride

riding in the white abyss

tracks on Lake Louise in 3 inches of fresh snow

The Glenn Highway just before Eureka Lodge on the way back to Chickaloon

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