PLANNING SOME AFTERNOON GROOMING ON EAST SIDE TODAY - while the groomer is working there, consider skiing on the West Side where trails will be firm.
A mixture of hardpack and firm packed powder - good to very good to excellent skating and striding conditions yesterday. Since last Friday's 'wet' snowfall, we've fully groomed the West Side, plus 95% of the East Side. Classic track is present on all but the most technical hills/curves. The trails at lower elevation have an underlying icy feel, but there's no problem with edge control. The 'Washout' trail hasn't been groomed lately, and has 3"-4" standing snow.
Friday's January 15th snowfall delivered 2.5-5 inches of moisture rich snow - deeper snow on the trails at higher elevation. We were lucky to get this much snow and not much rain. Most of the dirt spots are covered, bring your good skis. The East Side 'Otter Slide' and 'Far East' trails currently are the roughest, but still very enjoyable.
Important: Click here to view East Side precautions.
Our snowshoe trails are a good option for hikers - PLEASE DON'T HIKE ON THE SKI TRAILS!
Tuesday, January 19: dusting of fine powder
Monday, January 18: 1" fluff
Saturday, January 16: scant flurries
Thurs/Fri January 14-15: Rain mixed with 2.5"-5" moisture rich, dense, snowball snow; then a drier 1/2" snowfall overnight January 15/16.
January 21, Thursday afternoon: planning on grooming on the East Side 'Core Loop' and some side trails.
January 19, Tuesday afternoon/evening: packed (rolled) the rest of the East Side trails, then performed finish grooming on those trails.
January 18, Monday afternoon/evening: packed (rolled) the West Side loops, including the East/West crossover trail (23-L-K-J) and the Hunter Walker Loop on the East Side. Then performed finish grooming on those trails, including new classic track. Lastly, touched up the skate deck on Excelsior Road (West Side) and the 'Gravel Road' (East Side).
January 17, Sunday evening: groomed Excelsior road, then groomed the same trails that were packed Saturday evening. This included fresh classic track.
January 16, Saturday evening: Groomed (packed) 'Excelsior Road' (West Side) first, then packed numbers 1 through 21 on the 'Core Loop', and from there groomed down 'Hemlock Canyon' to #25, and back to the trailhead. The 'Whitetail' trail also was groomed. Did not set new classic track Saturday night.
The Blue Hills Trail is a favorite place for many hunters during the fall. Since it is non-motorized, it provides solitude that’s hard to find elsewhere. Bird and deer hunters are especially appreciative.
For many decades, a certain group of hunters from the Chippewa Falls area has camped in the parking lot by the warming house during the Thanksgiving gun deer hunt. Their tradition includes decorating their campsite with Christmas lights and inflatable characters. Quite a site!
The Blue Hills Trail has 20+ miles of trails that grow on you, and many trail users give back in their own way.
The group from Chippewa Falls has ‘given back’ by helping develop the signage for the Blue Hills Trail. At each of 60 intersections you’ll find a metal map holder that protects our laminated maps from the weather and curious critters. Each trail that branches from an intersection has a metal reflective sign providing directions. Thank you to our friends from Chippewa Falls for their part in keeping us oriented and safe on the Blue Hills Trail.
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