February 5th, 2020 ~ Vol. 90 No. 5
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Snowmobiles creating dangerous conditions
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
Debbie Goldstein photo
Snowmobiles creating dangerous conditions for skiers on the cross-country ski trails
Debbie Goldstein
Crowsnest Nordic Ski Club board member
This week one or more snowmobiles invaded the non-motorized Chinook Provincial Recreation Area and did extensive damage to the cross-country ski trails. It’s discouraging to see snowmobile tracks on the cross-country trails in spite of clear signage and boundaries designating them for non-motorized use, especially when there are so many other easily accessible areas where snowmobilers can safely and legally ride. There are many potential risks for skiers when a snowmobile goes on ski trails. If you look at a ski track, there is a place for each ski and skis are more stable moving forward. But when a snowmobile comes through, it tears up the nicely groomed and track-set surface into ruts and large ice chunks. This makes skiing very difficult and dangerous when the groomed, flat surface that allows for control is gone. We’ve had to put up an advisory on fb because the trails are too damaged to safely use after the snowmobilers came through on them. Two people have already been injured because of snowmobile damage.
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There is ample signage clearly indicating that this is a non-motorized area, but perhaps some people don’t understand the dangerous conditions they are creating when sledding on XC ski trails. Most of the sledders have been fairly respectful of our management area. When they see areas that are groomed, they tend to avoid it. We have a good relationship with sledders most of the time, but we also understand that the snowmobile club has no control over what individuals do. Snoriders Club President Kelsey Poelt says, “For any snowmobile users that are uncertain of the Crow Snow Riders designated trails, and riding areas, please visit www.crowsnowriders.ca or email cnpcrowsnowriders@gmail.com for trail information. Sledders riding on groomed and set cross country ski trails is a safety hazard, just like 4WD trucks that chew big ruts on the Crow Snow Riders groomed snowmobile trails. While enjoying your winter recreation, please respect all user groups’ boundaries. Have fun and be safe!”
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If you see snowmobiles or ATV's on the Allison trails other than our grooming sleds, please report them to the “Report-a-Poacher” hotline at 1-800-642-3800 as soon as possible. We want to keep our trails safe.

Come out February 1st for our annual Flight of the Crows Loppet (a family oriented xc ski race).

Check Facebook for more information or email cnpcrosscountry@gmail.com.

Who is the Crowsnest Nordic Ski Club?

The Crowsnest Nordic Ski Club is a not-for-profit group dedicated primarily to promoting cross-country skiing at the Allison-Chinook cross country ski area in the Crowsnest Pass, Alberta. The Allison-Chinook cross country ski area is located on public lands on the east side of Tecumseh Mountain at the continental divide. The forested, sheltered and rolling terrain found here provides for a superb cross-country ski experience for skiers of all skill levels. Allison-Chinook has fabulous trails as well as basic amenities. The Crowsnest Pass has some of the best cross-country skiing in Alberta's southern Rockies.
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February 5th, 2020 ~ Vol. 90 No. 5
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