Grooming March 13, 2018

March 13, 2018;  

Thank you Trail Builders: Today’s report is brought to you by Craig and Phyllis Stien.  Craig and Phyllis  sponsor the 17k mark on the Noque’.  Without the contribution from folks like Craig and Phyllis we would not be able to enjoy the great skiing we have come to expect.  So, if you see them, please say muchas gracias.

Forestville Real Grooming Report:  Bob is grooming an inch or two of new snow on the Noque’ and Animoosh to the pine plantation just inside of 16k.  If adequate new snow to re-set classic tracks he will do so.  Of course, if there is not, then the tracks will be still quite good.  Bob also thinks he will be able to groom Chiwagi By-Pass and Muckwa.


SPECIAL NOTE TO SKIERS; Gookookoo, Papasay and the connector from Hemlock Junction to the point where Migizi and Bagwaji meet will be closed for the season effective today:  The majority of our trail system is on commercial forest land.  The land owners allow NTN to use them for ski trails but every 10 to 15 years they harvest some trees.  This year they are logging west of the trail head beginning at the power lines.  As the logging operation moves west, other trails will be effected.  The loggers are working with NTN to keep trails open as long as possible.


Now for some nitty gritty details for skiers like me that dearly love to ski Bagwagi and Chiwagi.  They are still open via Migizi!  So, you get an extra two hills in your ski! Go out the Noque 1k past the power lines. Take the first right onto Migizi after the hill at 11k. At the bottom of the hill turn left onto Bagwagi and enjoy for now.


Please give the loggers a wide berth.  They are doing difficult and dangerous work.  Your help will be appreciated by all.


We should all know, without commercial forest operations we would have no ski trails.  So, if you see a logger or forester, say “thanks”.


Saux Head: Tim track setting all trails Saturday.  Saux Head trails are groomed for classic and skate skiing. The trails are spectacular with great hills as well as rolling terrain.  The views are beautiful and overlook Superior and Saux Head.  Today and the weekend look to be great days for Saux Head.  If you have not skied them you don’t know what you are missing.  Please go today, tomorrow or Sunday. The trail head is located 15 miles west of Marquette just off Co Rd 550; follow the signs.

Fit Strip: The Fit Strip is groomed as time permits.

Big Bay Pathway: Trails were groomed Saturday and are in excellent condition.  Meditation is not open at this time due to logging.  Bear Mountain, Ridge Line, and Hidden Grin are groomed and excellent.



Way Too Long Grooming Report:    I did ski yesterday and it was fantastic.  When being so self-indulgent as to ski all afternoon I am reminded of the great surf condition report writer, Gerry Lopez, king of the Banzai Pipeline.  His rational is that he will be a more contented individual after a good session and can then bring joy and help to others.  So, on days like yesterday I tend to look to him rather than John Calvin.

Anyway, just the right amount and right type of new snow was on the trail.  The Bombi grooming from the weekend meant the skate deck was wide and flat.  Yesterday morning’s grooming ended at the pine plantation but skiing beyond that point was just as good if not better.  As you may recall, I did introduce the concept of “free re-fills” last week as they relate to alpine skiing.  For the uninitiated, alpine free re-fills occur when snow and wind fill in the tracks as fast as you can make them.  A slope with deep powder may be 50% or maybe even 75% shredded at the end of the day and a 3” or 4” overnight snow with the right amount of breeze can return the hill to deep powder.  It is natural grooming at its best.  The same can be said of Nordic ski conditions but the ideal snow event is about 1’ – 2”.  When the snow is cold like yesterday, it stays young for days.  Grooming is good for cosmetics but skiing can be fabulous by nature’s free re-fills.  So, when you hear someone complain about the cold March weather, remind them how it keeps the snow young and you get free re-fills. Snow is just like people in that regard.  If ridden hard and put up wet people tend to get the face they deserve by the time they are about 40.  This snow is middle aged in “snow years” but still looks like a spring chicken.  I hope to indulge myself again.