Friday, January 1, 2016

First Ski of the Year: Kawartha Nordic

We were excited by the first bit of snow that arrived on Tuesday. Somehow the snow just makes the kids (and kids at heart) want to get outside more. The kids were really happy to be able to play in the white stuff. The good news is that we had some snow. They bad news was that there was just barely enough to cover the grass and it was capped by a thin layer of freezing rain. It was great for playing in around the house, but clearly there wouldn't be any cross-country skiing close to home.

After the snow I saw the following tweets:

How desperate was I to ski? Would I be able to convince the family to drive for three hours so we could ski? Can you tell I was desperate? I decided to sit on it for a day and to my surprise the next day I came across this tweet.
What a treat! There was skiing a little over an hour away. We made plans for a day trip to Kawartha Nordic on New Year's day. The kids were excited for a last minute adventure.

As it turns out the weather was great. The temperature was -3˚C but it felt like -6˚C in the wind. Once we got into the woods we didn't notice the wind at all. We were also pleasantly surprised to see that there were only about half a dozen cars in the parking lot when we got there.

Upon our arrival we made our way into the WOODfine Cabin to get setup.
WOODfine Cabin
The cabin has two floor with a wood stove on each floor. When we arrived the fires were going but they likely hadn't been going for too long as it was still quite cool inside.

Lower Floor WOODfine Cabin
Upper Floor WOODfine Cabin
We used the brand new flush toilets (in the new heated building). It's so much easier getting kids to use the toilet when they know that they aren't going to freeze to the seat.

Heated Washrooms
Nice Looking and Warm
We got all geared up and we were off.

I was amazed by the conditions. There was a good amount of fluffy snow, the trail was well groomed and track set. There were a few thin spots but nothing too bad.

The kids all had a blast. They were keen to ski, ski and ski some more. At one point we suggested that perhaps we should turn around. They wanted no part of it. 
Eventually we convinced them that we should make our way back to have some lunch. We were actually worried that they would keep going until they were tired and then we'd have to make our way back. It's no wonder they wanted to keep going. The weather was perfect, the trails weren't very busy and the forest was very peaceful.

We made our way back to WOODfine Cabin with no issues and enjoyed our lunch. After lunch we played some games and read some books. I asked who wanted to go out skiing again and only our six year old daughter was up to it. So she and I headed out.

I was blown away at how much better a skier she was compared to last year. Last winter it seemed as though every outing was a challenge. She wanted to go back. She'd fall down and wouldn't want to get up. There's no way she would have gone out a second time last year. I couldn't believe the change that somehow occurred from the end of last season to the beginning of this season. She was loving it! I was loving that she was loving it! We skied out to the sugar shack and back. 

Practicing Her Snowplough at the Sugar Shack
On the way back she said "We should go skiing again before schools starts". That a girl! This might be a tall order to fill given that it's Friday and school starts on Monday, but it's the thought that counts.

Overall we had an amazing day. We spent much of the day outside being active and connecting with nature. What better way could there be to start the new year?

As it turns out many others decided that it would be a great day to get out. As we ate our lunch we watched as more and more people just kept arriving. It was nice to see so many families out.

Sorry about the quality of the pictures. We used our camera that went for a swim in Killarney last summer. There's a bit of residue on the inside of the lens.