The budget of the day before affected a few issues — funding for parks has been cut in half. Strangely, funding for tourism has been increased. (There were mutterings of never mind the tourists, let’s do more for Albertans.)
So grooming and tracksetting at Ribbon Creek next season is again likely to be sporadic. PLPP and Mt. Shark will continue to be the two areas concentrated upon. We will be trying to get half of the Sawmill parking lot plowed next winter. This winter there have been definite safety issues from parking by the side of the highway for both people and the moose. We suggested that next year they not plow the access road to Black Prince and wait for the outcry from the telemarkers! X-C skiers and snowshoers are not known for making a fuss, but all of you out there REALLY REALLY need to make your feelings known to K Country and Alberta Transportation on this issue. PLEASE DO IT! As an aside, the Sawmill biffy was supposed to be locked but was left open in error. Thank goodness! Don’t you just hate going off into the bush?
Also affected by the budget is next year’s summer trail work. It will not be known for some time what trails, if any, will be worked on. Don’t expect any good news there. On the subject of trails, some seniors clubs have been hoping to get permission to clear away the big deadfall from the fire road leading to historic Upper Kananaskis Viewpoint. Citing wildlife concerns, the K Country environmentalists seem set on vetoing the idea.
As you know the hours at the information centres have been chopped, and it was suggested that, while keeping to the same number of hours, they open an hour earlier to catch the majority of Albertans heading out to the mountains.
Kiosks are undergoing improvements and with support from the various conservation officers should better reflect the trails the trailhead serves.
The Chester Lake trails received a lot of discussion. Just why are so many snowshoers not following the snowshoe trail? On six different occasions, Alf Skrastins held an informal survey and you may be interested in the findings — see Alf’s forthcoming blog.