Finally after many days the cold weather cycle has broke. Tomorrow the temperature should go above zero. Then we are looking at a even warmer weekend. Skiing should be great. Plan on skiing the Banadad.
Packing the Banadad this year took three “back-breaking” days of hand cutting and removing many down trees across the trail. Most of these tree were on the east end. Thanks to Tom’s crew which, this fall, hiked the entire west end removing the down trees as the went there was not many trees across the trail on west end. Finally the Banadad is packed and open. The grooming crew is ready to go as soon as we get another couple of inches of snow.
The Lace Lake, Tall Pine, part of the Banadad’s eastend and the Knopp Trail are tracked.
Another 4-5 inches of snow fell last night. This was on top of what we had before. Hopefully the Banadad will be open earlier this year then the last few years. Think more Snow!
This past week members of the Banadad Trail Association, the North Star Ski Touring Club and other friends of the Banadad spend Saturday working on the West End clearing the first mile of trail within the BWCA and along the new reroute. Among their other accomplishment was erecting a new Kiosk at the at the new West End trail head (see video http://youtu.be/iIPCxeJbHMk).
Prior to the Saturday Work Day, a four person crew lead by Tom Rice hiked the eight miles western end of the Banadad removing the down trees they came to along the way.
This morning we received about one inch of snow. First time this fall. However yesterday with the temperature hovering in the 40s and blue sky it snow for about five minutes. So you could say yesterday was our first snow.
Last Fall the first snow came about a month earlier on September 22.
Help Needed! The Banadad Trail Association invites you to help get the Banadad Ski Trail ready for winter. We will first be clearing the rocks and small sticks left by the bulldozer on the new rerouted trail section starting at the western Trailhead. Since this section should not take to long we then enter the BWCA cutting as much brush and stubble as time allows. It is also hoped that we will be able to install a kiosk to be donated by the Gunflint District- USFS at the new western trailheads parking area. Of course this will only happen only if the Forest Service is open for business by then.
Volunteers meet for the Trail Work Day at 9:00 am, Saturday, October 26, at Poplar Creek Guesthouse B&B, 11 Poplar Creek Drive (just off the Lima Grade) Gunflint Trail. Hand tools and lunches will be provided to all volunteers. Wear sturdy clothing and boots. After the work session volunteers are inviting to return to the Poplar Creek Guesthouse to clean-up and a social hour.
Then everyone is invite- trail volunteers and other friends of the Banadad to the Banadad Trail Association’s forth Annual Meeting followed by a Potluck Dinner. The Meeting and Potluck will be starting at 6:00 pm at the Schaap Community Center – Gunflint Fire Hall #1 – on Gunflint Trail next to Lima Grade. Bring dish to pass.
For more information on the Trail Work Day and/or the Banadad Trail Association’s Annual Meeting and Potluck Dinner contact 218-388-4487.
Five members of the Conservation Corp of Minnesota spent three days working deep into the BWCA portion of the trail. The crew first widened one mile west of the Mid Trail Junction, cleared another one half mile beyond the section widened and then cleared from Mid Trail east another two miles. The last day they widened and cleared the eight tenth of a mile west from the Croft Yurt to Mid Trail. They estimated putting in a minimum of 125 hours of on the trail work. The crew spent their nights at the Croft Yurts. Great Job!
This past weekend, trail activist and former BTA board member Karla Miller lead a group of four volunteers mowing the east end trails. The group came equipped with a Tracked ASV with a brushhog and a hand held brush saw. Over the weekend they mowed and brushed the Lace Lake, Tall Pines, Knopp trails and one and one-half miles of the Banadad, outside the BWCA. The ASV did most of the mowing while the brushsaw was used to clear through the swamps where the ASV could not go. All and all, 7.5 miles is now ready for winter.
Of course the weekend was not all work. There crew eat well and had fun during their off hours.
It may not be great skiing but after all it is may 13. There is still snow in the woods and the Lakes with the exception of the small ponds are still frozen.
There still is about a foot of continues snow on the Banadad. No skiers! I guess we are all tired of winter. See you next ski season sometime the end of November or early December.