Really, who wants to ski out of P8? The parking lot is almost always crowded, the trails are wide, and busy, if you go north, you don’t get very far before you have to take your skis off and cross the road. The trail on the other side is littered with gravel for at least 100 ft. I’m not convinced, are you? I found out a little secret though, I’ll tell you if you promise not to tell anyone. Get up really really early….and by early I mean wake up at 6 AM on a Sunday before your baby and husband are awake, and its -24, and go skiing. Seriously. You’ll love it. Once you wake up and warm up that is.
With my husband off to Victoria for a course for the week, and my mother-in-law babysitting I knew the chance of me getting out skiing this week would be pretty unlikely…even if I could go, my little guy has decided that going to bed at 11pm, waking up at 12, staying up until 2, and then getting up again at 4, 5, and 630 when my alarm goes off has left me a walking zombie. To top it off, work is picking up big time. I am exhausted.
I woke up Sunday morning groggy and thinking this early morning ski was a really dumb idea. To top it off, I had left my warm pants in my bedroom where my in-laws were sleeping so I had to brave the cold with nothing more than spandex and a pair of long underwear…I drove out to P8, only doing 80 on the highway since we got a flat, and are driving around on a spare with an 80km max until we get an appointment next week. Getting the evil eye from other drivers is never the best start to a Sunday morning. I wished that I had just stayed in bed.
There wasn’t a car at P8 when I arrived. The temperature on my dashboard read -24. I headed out, my skis slow and crunchy on the snow. Shivering, I thought I would last 30 minutes. As the first kilometer passed I warmed up and I cheered up. The trail was perfectly groomed and my tracks were the first ones of the morning. I had the trail to myself. It was beautiful and peaceful. The sun was rising, the sky was brilliant shades of orange, pink and purple, and I kept skiing, promising myself that from now on, I would always get up at 6 AM so I could have that amazing feeling that it was just me, my skis, the snow and the trees, and that I had the entire park all to myself.
Date Skied: January 22, 2012
Gatineau Loppet Training Update: