It’s back to work this morning. We had decided, before Christmas, to close the office Monday December 27, Friday December 31, Monday January 3. The first stage of the blizzard arrived on December 30 and the city was largely shut down. The city kept major streets and bus routes plowed but there wasn’t much happening on December 31. Stores opened and retail employees seemed to show up for work. The liquor stores did a brisk trade and people were stocking up on groceries, shovels and snowblowers.

I considered going out to ski but I anticipated problems getting to the trails, and I wasn’t sure that tracks had been set. I thought I might end up stuck on a back road or in a parking lot, and I thought I might end up breaking trail. It didn’t seem to be worth it. On Friday I shovelled snow at home and for my parents and after that I didn’t need another workout. I didn’t see road conditions or trails improving on New Year’s Day and I stayed indoors. On Saturday night it started to snow again and on Sunday I shovelled again. There was less snow, and it was largely powder. The first snowfall had included some sleet and freezing rain and the snow had been heavier. However the new snow had to be lifted clear of deep snow and previous snowpiles. Once again, I thought that travel was not advised.
I went to my parents’s house again. My mother was having a better day. I was invited in for coffee and snacks and had a better visit. My father may be able to handle minor flurries but this snow was clearly beyond his strength. He had made a start at his back door but there was a lot of fresh snow.
I went out to ski on Monday. I spent some time with a waxing iron applying a new coat of glide wax, but I didn’t leave as expected. I found a windrow of packed snow behind my garage, left by the loader that plowed the lane. I spent 45 minutes moving that. I put my skis inside the car. I arrived at Beaudry after 3:00. The road into the parking lot had been plowed and part of the lot had been plowed, although the road was narrow and there were places where cars had been stuck. It was chilly in the parking lot with the temperature at -23 and a brisk wind. It was better on the trail in the bush. The trail had been tracked. It was a little soft and I heard and felt the snow compact as I kicked. I wasn’t getting a good glide which was a puzzle, but I attributed it to a bad wax job and a soft track. I discovered at the end that my warm skis had trapped some snow, probably when I was locking the door of the house. It had melted and then frozen into chunks of ice firmly bonded to the front glide sections and in the tracking grooves. It was a good workout, but I won’t start with warm wet skis again.


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