Kane Valley Skiing – January 2021

Winter has arrived!

Over the past few days we’ve received over a foot of snow! Our groomers Hubby and Ian have been very busy getting our trails cleaned up so that we can all enjoy Kane Valley!

The large amounts of snow make a great cushion for beginner skiers to fall a few times. If you haven’t tried cross country skiing yet, this is the perfect year to start.

Reminder: To check current trail conditions and grooming updates scroll to the bottom of this page and click  on the ‘leave a comment’ button. For instructions on how to leave a comment continue to the end of this page

For instructions on how to leave a comment click hereIf you’ve been out skiing leave a comment so that others can see what the conditions are like!

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14 Responses to Kane Valley Skiing – January 2021

  1. Kate Anderson says:

    Good morning skiers. Just to let you all know the Kane Valley Road has been well sanded and in good shape. Temperature is -11 and the snow will be crusty and fast (I’m guessing!). Grooming will likely happen on Friday. With another couple couple of cms of snow, conditions should be good again. If you venture out, please let us know what you find.
    We have a good, solid, wide base on the main trails and we welcome winter back!
    Kind Regards

  2. Ian says:

    Greetings skiers. Here is a brief Kane Valley trail report for January 13, 2021….sort of.

    Sort of because I couldn’t get to the ski trails today due to an accident right at the beginning of the Kane Valley Road. A YRB plow truck was unable to negotiate the icy road and slid off into the ditch. Tow trucks were having extreme difficulty extricating the plow truck and the road was essentially closed for hours. I would definitely not want to be a vehicle coming down that road.

    Overnight freezing rain not only iced up the roads, but would have iced up the trails, too. They would have been, and most likely continue to be treacherous. Skiing is definitely NOT recommended until the road is properly and abundantly sanded, and the trails can be roughed up and groomed. Unfortunately, we won’t be able to groom until Saturday morning at the earliest. Even some fresh snow might not be enough as the hard, crusty snow will remain underneath, and continue to pose a hazard.

    Instead of skiing today, I joined three other members of the local Outdoor Club in a snowshoe outing on Hamilton Hill above Marquart Lake (the lake before Lundbom). We convened at the interpretive centre parking lot (which was also very icy) and snowshoed in from there. The snow was very crusty and icy (there’s that word again), but much more negotiable on snowshoes than on skis. Out on the trail we ran into local photographer Bruce Walters and noted nature photographer Frank Ritcey. You can check out some of Frank’s great stuff on YouTube, including this most soothing video:


    There was a strong wind up on Hamilton Hill as we snowshoed, and considerable evidence that the wind had been blowing for many hours. I suspect that the Kane Valley got the same wind, and that there are many branches, needles and cones down on the trails.

    A big shout-out to Greg, Tim and Jordan at Forest, Land and Natural Resource Operations (FLNRO) for their generous donation to the Nicola Nordic Ski Club to assist with maintenance and upkeep of the Kane Valley trail system.

    Stay safe and happy skiing.

  3. Kate Anderson says:

    It was warm and melting yesterday and rained and blew all night up in Kane Valley. Conditions will likely be tough going and icy today and getting colder now.
    Its currently-1 and very lightly snowing.

  4. Mischelle Pierce says:

    A friend and I did a quick ski down Chute and Mathews Loop East on Saturday OMG it was fantastic Fresh snow , amazing grooming , well tracked and nice and fast Thank you groomers
    Love your trail reports Ian keep it up !!!

  5. Ian says:

    Greetings skiers. Here is a brief Kane Valley trail report for January11, 2021.

    While Merritt and the Nicola Valley melts as a result of abnormally mild January temperatures, the Kane Valley continues to accumulate snow. Another modest centimetre of the white stuff fell today in the high country, as the thermometer held steady at about zero.

    I got an early start this morning, and skied the western-most loop of the Kane Valley trail network. Starting at P6, I climbed Harmon on the north side of the road up to Panorama shelter in 80 minutes, then descended the last part of Harmon to Gulch, to Overeasy, to P5. After crossing the road, I skied up to January shelter, then the length of Aspen back to P6. Total time: 2.5 hours.

    Skiing Harmon was actually quite pleasant. I had enough grip for the long uphill, and just the right amount of glide for the downhill. That said, the whole trail has only been groomed once, so it’s pretty rough in sections. The same can be said for Overeasy. Both trails are currently easier to deal with and safer going up than going down.

    As for Aspen, it was a delight. It’s double-tracked in a number of places. The one steep hill (by the Sundown junction) is formidable, however. I went up with not too much problem; use extreme caution going the other way. There’s just not much room to widen the trail, so snowplowing down is tricky, and there’s a fair drop-off on the left. If you’re apprehensive, don’t hesitate to pop the skis off and walk down. Just stay off to the side of the trail. We’ll try to open the Porter Bypass as soon as possible.

    If you’re like me and enjoy back-country skiing and breaking trail, consider the Tolko or Connector trails on the east side of the road, or the short Neil’s Valley trail on the west side. All three have not been groomed this year, and I haven’t seen any ski tracks on them yet (I may be wrong). Go for it!

    Travis, our ski guru at Breathe Bikes in Merritt, says that business has been brisk, with rentals flying out the door every weekend, and lots of memberships to the Nicola Nordic Ski Club being taken out.

    Stay safe and happy skiing.

  6. Dawson says:

    Great afternoon on Matthews loop, wife, dogs and I had a blast. Thanks for the great grooming. Warm temperatures as we left (3pm) and slight drizzle at the highway, hope it equates to more snow up top!

  7. Don says:

    pretty nice conditions today again. thanks for all the work ian/ hubby. Thankyou for all the info / weather posts, it is great getting that “local” knowledge before heading out!

  8. Ian says:

    Greetings skiers. Here is your Kane Valley trail report for January 9, 2021.

    I must be sounding like a broken record, but the conditions for skiing continue to be magnificent in the Kane Valley. The temperature at daybreak this morning was -13 degrees; it was -10 degrees at P3 at 9:00 a.m.; it stayed around -2 degrees for the better part of the day.

    Unlike Merritt, the Kane Valley has an abundance of snow; in fact, it’s quite hard to get around if you dare or have to take your skis off while out on the trails. Unlike the valley bottoms which saw an inversion layer of cloud for most of the day, the Kane Valley enjoyed clear skies and brilliant sunshine.

    Skiers and (snow)shoers were out in numbers today, with parking lots very busy. We’re considering installing parking meters (just kidding).

    Most of our attention today was focused on packing, grooming, widening, and track setting existing trails. We did Chute, most of both Matthew’s Loops, Kane, Skyhigh, Lower Ravine and Hill’s Homestead. The latter is really starting to set up nicely, and we invite keeners to give it a go. On the other side of the road, we again did Raven’s Ridge, Gulch, Vale, Asp and Tillicum.

    We’ve received our first feedback on the newly-opened Overeasy trail. It ain’t so easy at the moment. The first and last thirds are still a bit raw, and will need some more work. The recommendation is to ascend Overeasy at the moment, rather than descend.

    Two more trails were packed and groomed for the first time since the big snowfall in December. They are Upper Ravine and all of Harmon. The former is very beautiful and secluded; like Overeasy, it is rather raw right now and probably should be skied going up rather than down. As for Harmon, it is the longest single trail in the Kane Valley network at 6.4 kilometres. You can access it from Gulch or P6. From the Gulch junction, it’s a bit of a grinding climb up to Panorama shelter, but your hard work is rewarded by an almost 4-kilometre descent down to the Kane Valley Road. Conversely, starting at P6 means a very long slog uphill before you get to enjoy any descent. If you plan to tackle Harmon in its entirety, be aware that you will be quite isolated and there are some challenging sections (especially downhill). Watch out for tree wells.

    We’re hoping to be out grooming and track setting again next Saturday. Until then….

    Stay safe and happy skiing.

  9. Ian says:

    Greetings skiers. Here is your Kane Valley trail report for January 8, 2021.

    Weather-wise, mornings continue to be the best time to ski, with temperatures consistently a few degrees below zero. Today, it was -6 degrees at 9 a.m. at P3. By 1 p.m., it was +2 degrees at Lunch Box shelter, and the snow was starting to get heavy and sticky.

    Snow continues to fall and accumulate in the Kane Valley, with another couple of centimetres today. This could well be one of the best years for skiing in some time.

    A big shout-out to the Three Musketettes – Kate Anderson, Kelly Reid and Sandra Neustadter – for muscling their way around Hill’s Homestead today – not an easy outing.

    A big shout-out also to Greg Hodson and son, Ryan de Vissar and son, and Tim Bennett (the FLNRO army) for three hours of hard work with a snowblower to begin opening up the road into P2. Incredibly tough going. Now, maybe YRB will step up and finish the job.

    It was a fairly successful day for trail packing and grooming, although we continue to experience electrical problems with the track setter. Here are the trails we groomed today:

    On the south-east side of the road: Chute, both Matthew’s Loops, Kane, Aspen, Sundown, Lower Ravine, Skyhigh, and Hill’s Homestead.

    On the north-west side of the road: Raven’s Ridge, Asp, Tillicum, Vale, Menzies, Gulch, Crossover, and for the first time Overeasy.

    Overeasy is now officially open, and has a different look to it. The middle third is right on a newly-built logging road. Don’t worry – it still looks beautiful in the winter. As we widen this trail out with repeated passes, the middle third is going to be great for those wishing to try a bit of downhill parallel skiing or even classic telemarking. If I might suggest a worthy loop: park at P3, ski Vale to Teiffel’s Landing, Gulch, Overeasy to P5, cross the road, and ski Kane all the way back to P3.

    We’re planning to be back out Saturday morning improving everything done today, and hopefully laying down a few more tracks.

    Stay safe and happy skiing.

  10. Lorna Latremouille says:

    Great skiing today from P1 to lunch box! So pretty with new snow and snow still hanging in the trees! Thank you!

  11. Kate Anderson says:

    Kane Valley weather and snow report: it is currently -9 and skiing has been good all week on the trails i’ve ventured on. I’ve skied the north side this week P1 up Ravens to Lunchbox, Gulch, P3 to Lunchbox down Vale and ventured from P5 down Kane. We have received 3 to 4 inches of fresh snow this week. I understand our groomers are going out today and a report will follow.

    Behind the scenes…. i want to give a huge shout out to Linda Brown, who is taking care of memberships and the finances and keeping our club accountable:) We appreciate YOU!!

    Come out and play:)

  12. Kate Anderson says:

    Good Evening Skiers,
    Forgive me for two posts in one day, but it’s important to note that there was closer to 4 cms of fresh snow yesterday, and skiing was excellent this morning on a solid base with fresh powder on top. There was no melt up here today and it is currently blustering and snowing again. I am definitely going skiing again in the morning!
    Come out and play:)

  13. Kate Anderson says:

    Good Morning skiers!

    I live in Kane Valley and it has been requested that i post some weather reports from Kane Valley as i live up here.

    It is currently -6 at my place, it is often 4-6 degrees colder up here than in Merritt.
    We had 2 cms of fresh snow yesterday, with a smattering of rain on top late in the day. A beautiful sun rise, the snow is calling and i’m heading out to check out the trails this morning.

    Early morning skiing is often decent and it is always excellent to get outside and play and combat the winter blues.

    Thanks to Ian for the informative posts and to all the efforts of our team for keeping this volunteer club going, and to our groomers Ian and Hubby, i salute you!

    Our membership has increased this year, so thank you for buying memberships and keep them coming!!! Membership dollars = grooming!

  14. Ian says:

    Greetings skiers and Happy New Year. Here is your Kane Valley trail report for January 1, 2021.

    Some really good news….P3 parking lot has been fully plowed! It was done overnight by a YRB grader. It pushed some serious snow around. There’s now two entrances to the lot, and room for as many as 20 vehicles. Please have the courtesy to park one behind the other along the sides of the snow banks, leaving the middle open for coming and going. And don’t park too close together.

    The grader did not do P2 parking lot, and I can understand why. The entrance is too narrow, and there’s nowhere to just push the massive amount of snow that’s built up. It’s going to require a loader to come in and actually remove the snow and take it somewhere else.

    Sincere thanks to the many people who contacted (and complained to) YRB and got the fire started. Now, let’s keep the heat on and get P2 resolved. It’s by far our safest parking location, being the largest, away from the main road, closest to a shelter, and closest to family and pet-friendly trails that cater to everyone.

    The grader also widened Kane Valley Road as well. A word of caution, however….be careful coming back out on Kane Valley Road to the highway. The grader has pushed the snow so far back on the right that the ditch is exposed. If you drive too far over, you’re going to find that ditch with your right wheels.

    Now to the skiing today. The weather was a real potpourri. Overcast and threatening at 10 a.m. Sunny and warm by 1 p.m. I recorded a high of +8 degrees. The mild temperature made for some tricky snow conditions in the middle of the day. I skied Kane-Hill’s Homestead-Kane from P3 and experienced a bit of everything. It’s a good idea to pack some waxes with you on spring-like days like today, as well as a scraper to get rid of stuck-on snow. A shout-out to the skier who did Hill’s yesterday afternoon, right after it had been groomed. Good job. It’s a challenging trail with a sustained climb to start and a speedy descent to finish. Watch out for the snow fence! And a shout-out to Rob Rose who skied Raven’s-Vale-Kane-Matthew’s Loops-Chute early this morning and provided us with some valuable feedback.

    For the second day in a row, the turnout of skiers in the Kane Valley was tremendous. There were a dozen vehicles at P3, another eight or so at P1, and quite possibly more down at P5 and P6.

    Let’s hope we can ‘weather’ these next couple of days of mild temperatures and possible rain. Things look more promising (for the Kane Valley at least) starting Sunday, January 3 and on into next week.

    We welcome posts on this blog from any and all Kane Valley users. Share your skiing experience, offer advice, and ask questions. Just go to the very end of the posts for the current month and you’ll see a box that says Please Leave A Comment. Ce n’est pas difficile.

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