This year is going to be a cracker - a sentiment that has been echoed quite a few time today already. I couldn't believe how many people (a couple of thousand at least) were out skating on the pond at around -20ºC, but the ice was chocker for New Year's Eve. The fires around the side were pretty popular & my skating is slowly getting better - even if I did take my first, & due to the date - last, fall of the year. After the rather cute fireworks & suitable oohs & aahs, it was time to retire for a nice big sleep before the first ski of 2011. Here's a picture shamelessly stolen from Alex, that goes a little way to showing how crowded the ice was - avoiding all those people had its moments.
I was pleased to see the weather forecast was predicting slightly warmer temperatures & even more pleased to have a ski buddy in town who wasn't working. Alex (got to love the friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend connection when you are travelling; another Aussie too, have I met a single Kiwi since I've been living here?) [& yes, that is another Alex, just to confuse things] is over here putting in a few months of intense boarder-cross training & competition. The twenty centimetres of snow over the last week had the hill in a much improved condition than previously this season. Skiing a whole day with only one other person & that person being much more experienced than me was great for my skiing. I went on a whole heap of runs I haven't been on before & was regularly challenged by some of the terrain I found myself on. Not really related to that, I somehow took my biggest dive yet - I hit one of the few sections of crusted powder left untouched a little too fast & somehow lost my skis & went flying a couple of metres forward. Thankfully Alex didn't see that & could only watch as I, rather bemused, turned & recovered my skis & poles. Goat's Eye was also perhaps the most improved part of the resort & there were quite a few runs to be had down there in relative peace & quiet. Other/original-Canmore-Alex (to me anyway) also joined us for a couple of runs.
Back in town we headed to the Hotel (more of a pub really) for (new)Alex's first poutine & some beers. I believe I have already declared my love of poutine here before a number of times - this particular incarnation didn't disappoint either. Now after a little relaxing, dinner cooked & eaten it's off to bed to rest up so I can do it all again tomorrow. Well, not quite the same - Alex (original, I'm getting confused already) & I are going backcountry off the back of Sunshine to Citadel Pass. I'm not sure I really know what that means either - but then I am slightly tired.
6 hours ago