Snow in the air on the West Elk Trails

From Peggy Tibbetts:

There was snow in the air up on the West Elk Trails on Saturday, September 30, which also happened to be National Public Lands Day.

Tod and I took the CJ out on the trails to do a little maintenance. Even Odin joined in the fun!

Plenty of thunder & lightning and rain mixed with snow followed us out to Eric’s Loop.

A lot of big dead trees came down last summer.
More than usual. We cleared trails as far as the winding trail down to the gully. There are 5 big trees down on that section. We didn’t have the equipment or manpower to clear those. Plus there’s a dead aspen bending over the trail that will need to come down. So there’s still a lot more work to be done. However today is the first day of rifle hunting season which lasts through November 19, so we will be clearing trails after hunting season ends and before ski season begins.

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Sunday, January 15

Eileen Wysocki reports:

Hi Trail Users,

FYI, my husband and I broke trail on James’s Loop today, so if you follow our tracks, it’s a fully packed loop now (at least until the next big snow). We went counter-clockwise and the downhill was already packed, but when we hit the creek at the bottom of the drainage, the tracks went to the right. We followed them for a bit until we realized we weren’t going the correct way, and we also saw that the tracks were from a skier/boarder who had come down a steep slope. We back-tracked and then realized the rest of the normal loop was completely untracked. We broke trail to the cabin, met up with the road, and continued breaking trail almost the entire way back uphill. The last 1/2 mile or so was packed by another snowshoer. Anyway, it might be good to have another sign or flagging at the bottom of the drainage where you need to turn left and start heading toward the cabin so people don’t get lost. Just a thought. Great workout though, and a wonderful day!

Peggy Tibbetts responds:

Thanks Eileen and Glenn! What a workout! Bet it was gorgeous.

Yes, that left turn is a problem. We just haven’t had enough volunteers to get trail markers out on James’s Loop.  Now that you tracked it, we should be able to get some stakes and posts out there.

Friday, January 6

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Six inches of new snow and single digits on the West Elk trails today. But the sunshine and sparkling snow made it all worth it. In the photo above Aaron Mattix and Tod Tibbetts dig out the Ginzugroomer. Tod and Aaron packed the trails with snowmobiles. Then Aaron ran the Ginzugroomer on Hwy 819, Kay’s Loop, Zeus’s Cutoff and the section of Eric’s from Zeus’s to back to the chicken feet.

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Bodi Kwiatkowski (8) helped out with trail packing on the Bearcat today. Afterward there was plenty of time for snow dancing — and some skiing, too.

Enjoy the snow!

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