THANKS TO ALL THE TOUR LEADERS AND PARTICIPANTS FOR A GREAT SEASON!
2016-17 NSCF TOUR SCHEDULE
The following are Nordic Ski Club of Fairbanks tours that have been scheduled so far. Tours will be added as tour leaders step forward to volunteer and set dates. Some are already being planned!
For any questions or to volunteer to lead a tour please contact one of our Tour Coordinators:
• Mike Schmoker: msfbcski [at] gmail.com; 455-6848
• Eric Troyer: fbxskierparent [at] gmail.com; 455-6641
PAST TOURS THIS SEASON
Fairbanks-Circle Trail Out & Back
When: Saturday, April 8, 2017
Start time and place: Meet at Skiland Road pullout just off the Steese Highway at 11 AM.
Estimated tour time: Beginner level, 3-4 hours.
Description: Rolling terrain out at Cleary-Summit crossing Skiland then on to the unplowed Fairbanks Creek Road leading to the old Fairbanks-Circle Trail (snowmobiled). We shall sally as far as people wish, then return the same route. Great views of the Alaska Range and the White Mountains. We stop for a snack enroute. Suntan lotion and klister are in order. Jan may offer us cocoa at “Janheim” upon the return. Vintage ski gear (wooden skis, bamboo poles, wool and leather) encouraged but not required, of course. ANY AND ALL CANINES ARE MOST WELCOME.
Olnes Out & Back via Chatanika Valley
When: Saturday, 1 April 2017
Start time and place: Meet at Fox General Store at noon; car pool out the Elliott to Olnes.
Estimated time: About 3 hours duration
Description: Back-country tour is beginner-intermediate level. Ski in on snowmobile trail east over the old Tanana Valley Railroad grade (1906-1933) through picturesque mixed woods. We’ll see old pilings, a railroad building near Eldorado and a giant steam boiler from Oswego, NY. Good views of Haystack and the rest of the hills on both sides of the valley. This tour is an out and back the same way. (A longer tour continues on this trail all the way to Chatanika on the Steese, but requires a car shuttle for another day.) ANY AND ALL CANINES ARE MOST WELCOME.
“Norsk Ridge” Loop at Haystack
When: Saturday, 25 March 2017
Start time and place: Meet at Fox General Store at 10:00 AM; car pool out Elliott to north side of Haystack Mountain.
Estimated tour time: 5-6 hours duration
Description: Back-country tour is intermediate-advanced level. Ski north over old fire break, then steep, 400', curvy descent on narrow trapper trail (can remove skis and walk). Gently re-ascend north on a large fire break to gain classic “Norsk Ridge” that maintains high elevation with superb views in all directions. Enjoyable “old-style” mushing trail winds amongst the spruce that protect from the winds. If you never get to Norway, this trail is for you as it resembles those above Lillehammer, Norway, used on the Birkebeiner Rennet! This trail eventually connects with the White Mountain Trail that leads to Moose Creek Cabin. We'll ski most of the way out there then return the same way for a total loop of about fourteen miles. Skins are helpful, if you have them, to climb back up Haystack. ANY AND ALL CANINES ARE MOST WELCOME.
Leader: PS Marshall (457-3895 or <pmarshall [at] acetekk.com>)
When: Sunday, March 19, 2017
Start time and place: 10 am, UAF Ski Hut
Estimated tour time: 3 hours Description: While some people race this event, others tour it at a more relaxed pace. It’s an annual fundraiser for UAF trail system, and it uses most of the UAF trails to come up with 20k distance. Register for $15 at Beaver Sports, Goldstream Sports or Raven Cross Country. No dogs allowed Leader:
No leader, but for more info: stanjustice (at) acsalaska.net 479-5017
Henderson Road to Ester Dome North
When: Thursday, March 16, 2017
Start time and place: 10 am at intersection of Ester Dome Road and Henderson Road.
Estimated tour time: 3 hours Description: We will ski along Henderson Road and turn right up the Happy Ridge Trail. (Mountain bikers know it as Corner Single Track). We will cross Ester Dome Road and traverse along the North side of Ester Dome. Great views of Moose Mountain and Murphy Dome. Return the same way we go up. If you have skins bring them. If you don’t have skins apply kick wax from tip to tail. Poles with larger baskets are also a help with all the lovely snow we have. The grades are reasonable but might be some side stepping on short sections if you don’t have skins. Canceled if airport temp is minus 25 or lower. No dogs please.
Leader: Stan Justice 479-5017 hm 712-4035 cell stanjustice (at) acsalaska.net.
Reeves’ Ridge to Eastern Haystack
When: Saturday, 11 March 2017
Start time and place: Meet at Skiland Road parking lot with the DOTPF videocam just off the Steese Highway at noon. Carpool to start about a ½ mile from the Chatanika Lodge on the Steese (may have to dig out parking spots, so bring shovels).
Estimated tour time: 2-4 hours in duration,
Description: Advanced ski, with variable terrain and some extremely steep downhills and tight turns (unsure if can be walked due to deep snow); skins mandatory. Trailbreaking to the Chatanika may be very slow going; should have a snowmobile trail on the river. Steep climb up Reeves’ Ridge on an old Cat track through handsome forest. Angle eases and tour turns around at Haystack East road. May need to cut Mongolian ski brakes from saplings for the descent, so bring a small lightweight folding saw if you have one. Recommend bringing lunch/snack, unless you can hold out till Lodge. K-9s welcome.
Leader: PS Marshall (457-3895 or @ Cleary 389-2449; <pmarshall [at] acetekk.com>)
Goldstream East Ski (and climbing) Tour
When: Saturday, March 4, 2017 Start time and place: 10am; pullout at about Mile 2.5 Ballaine Road just before the Goldstream Creek bridge
- Please park on the uphill end of the parking area - the end closest to Fairbanks
- Also, it's possible a video team from Explore Fairbanks may want to shoot some video of us starting out!
Estimated tour time: 3-4 hours
Description: We’ll start on the old Tanana Valley Railroad trail and see if we can find the remains of an old railroad bridge. Then we'll head over to find a "pingo" that's probably really a pile of old mining tailings. We can climb it and take in the view. Then, depending on the group, we'll head back the way we came or we see if we can find a connecting trail to a trail that's a bit higher and parallels the north side of Skyline Ridge. We might even look for an old cabin off that trail. Finally, we'll take the higher trail back to where it meets the valley trail. Beginners welcome!
Leader: Eric Troyer, fbxskierparent (at) gmail.com; 455-6641
Easy Isberg Trails Tour
When: Sunday, February 26, 2017
Start time and place: Meet at 11 a.m. at the parking lot just off Oboe Court. (Parks to Cripple Creek to Isberg to Oboe. Or Chena Ridge to Isberg to Oboe.)
Estimated tour time: 2 hours
Description: This will be four or five easy miles on trails with mild up and downhills. Beginners and friendly dogs welcome. Friendly beginners and dogs welcome. Experienced skiers welcome.
Leader: Steven Hansen (stevenseanhansen [at] gmail.com; 799-5627)
Cleary-Summit to Chatanika Lodge via Margaret’s Corner
When: Saturday, 25 February 2017
Start time and place: Meet at Skiland Road parking lot with the DOTPF videocam just off the Steese at 11 AM. Carpool to Chatanika Lodge to place car at tour’s end, then backtrack to start at ridge above Cleary-Steese Col. ("Col" is a French word that means a saddle in the ridge. This col is the lowpoint on the Steese between Cleary Creek headwaters and Last Chance Creek on the other side to the west.)
Estimated tour time: Two to four hours
Description: Advanced/ intermediate ski with variable terrain and some steep downhills and tight turns (most can be traversed or walked); skins advisable, if have. Beautiful forest past historic Davidson Ditch to end at Chatanika Lodge, but not before overflow at base of Lulu Creek and crossing the tailings (will probably have to break out trail here). Can be extremely cold down in this valley. Recommend bringing lunch/snack, unless can hold out till Lodge. K-9s welcome.
(This was rescheduled from February 11 due to cold temperatures.)
Rat Ponds Tour
When: Sunday Feb 19, 2017
Canceled if airport temp is 20 below and colder at 11 am. https://weather.com/weather/today/l/FAI:9:US
Start time and place: 12 noon at Double Eagle/Fairbanks Golf and Country Club (just E of Farmers Loop and Ballaine Rd. intersection).
Estimated tour time: 3 hours
Description: With luck there will be set classic tracks so bring track skis. We’ll start on the golf course trails and then the mushing trails to the Rat Pond where will check out Muskrat push up mounds. After circling each lake, it is on to more mushing trails, then we pass the leaning pole (a remnant of early radio communication) and wind down onto peat ponds and back around to the golf course.
No dogs please.
Leader: Stan Justice 479-5017 stanjustice (at) acsalaska.net
(This was rescheduled from February 12 due to cold temperatures.)
Goldstream Sports Classic Trails Tour
When: Saturday, Feb 18, 2017
Start time and place: 1 p.m. at Goldstream Sports parking lot, across from Ann's Greenhouse on Sheep Creek Road.
Estimated tour time: 1.5 to 2 hours
Description: These are easy rolling classic-only trails through the woods, with just a couple steep drops you can walk around
Leader: Cam Leonard (canoecam [at] gmail.com; 907/750-3084)
North Bear Creek Ridge Nordic Ski Tour at Cleary-Summit
When: Saturday, February 4, 2017
Start time and place: Meet at DOTPF parking lot just off the Steese Highway at the start of Skiland Road at 11am. Car pool to start at Fairbanks Creek-Fish Creek Rd. intersection.
Estimated tour time: About 4 hours
Description: Intermediate/advanced-level ski, out and back on snowmobiled Fairbanks Creek Rd., then on to trapper’s trail (may have to break out) above Bear Creek. Depending on conditions, we may descend to Bear Creek and re-ascend on broken-out trail on steep ridge (skins mandatory) to Fairbanks Creek Rd. Otherwise we’ll do an out and back on the trapper’s trail on the ridge with fine views of this historic mining area. Usually warmer up here as the sun returns. Dogs welcomed.
Leader: PS Marshall (457-3895 or @ Cleary 389-2449; <pmarshall[at]acetekk.com>)
(This tour was altered bc of low temps and no one at meeting point at start time)
Skarland Ski Trail Tour
When: Sunday, January 29, 2017
Start time and place: 11 a.m. at Pearl Creek Elementary School parking lot.
Estimated tour time: 1.5 to 2 hours or more
Description: We will tour up the powerline and around the bowl, crossing Wolverine Lane, Ballaine Rd, Kingfisher Rd. At the bottom of the Mooses Schuss we can either head back to the cars or continue on to UAF and then return. The short tour is about 6K and the long tour 14K. The hard core could even do the historic Skiathon 20K racecourse. The route is rolling hills and with any luck will have set classic tracks. Cancelled if NSCF Birch Hill weather page http://www.nscfairbanks.org/ temp is below -20 F at 10 am.
Dogs: Since we are in over 100 backyards best to make this one dog free.
Leader: Stan Justice 479-5017 stanjustice(at)acsalaska.net
ALPA [Alaska Long Phase Array]-C Trail at Cleary-Summit
When: Saturday, January 28, 2017
Start time and place: Meet at DOTPF parking lot just off the Steese Highway at the start of Skiland Road at 11 AM. We’ll car pool to start off the Ft. Knox Rd. where we may have to shovel out parking spot.
Estimated tour time: About 4 hours
Description: Intermediate/advanced-level ski, out and back on snowmobiled ALPA-C trail on ridge with fine views of the Chena Domes. One or two big hills that can be walked. Usually warmer up here as the sun returns. Bring your lunch if you get hungry. High Gateway to the Fairbanks Creek gold workings. Skins can be very useful, if you have them. Dogs welcomed.
Leader: PS Marshall (457-3895 or @ Cleary 389-2449; <pmarshall[at]acetekk.com>)
East End Chatanika-Tanana Valley Railroad Roundtrip
When: Saturday, January 21, 2017
Start time and place: Meet 11 am at the Chatanika Lodge ~MP 27 Steese Highway out by the burned gold dredge.
Estimated tour time: About 2.5 hours
Description: Beginner level; flat (unless we decide to head up to Whiskey Gulch). We’ll ski west on the old RR grade (usually snowmobiled) past the dredge, old mines, new mines and railroad ruins, then turn around and come back. This tour can open up many fine, forgotten tours in the region. It can be cold down here so have good mittens and boot covers. We often adjourn to the Lodge thereafter. Canines always welcome.
Leader: Philip S. Marshall (457-3895 or pmarshall [at] acetekk.com)
Gunn Creek “Red Hot Mama” Roundtrip ski tour
When: Saturday, 14 January 2017.
Start time and place: Meet at UAF/CRREL Permafrost Tunnel parking lot off the New Steese before Fox at 11:00 am.
Estimated tour time: 2.5 hours,
Description: Intermediate level; rolling terrain with long climb up (if have skins, bring, as trail only partially broken out) through mixed forest, then rollicking descent with best woodsy turns anywhere. Usually cold as we climb out of inversion.
Leader: Philip Marshall, 457-3895; pmarshall (at) acetekk.com
Rosie Creek Ramble
When: Sunday, January 8, 2017
Start time and place: 11am, Rosie Creek Trail (see directions below)
Estimated tour time: 1.5 to 2 hours
Description: A mellow 4-mile ski on the Rosie Creek trails. Beginners very welcome as is anyone who would like an introduction to the huge system of unmaintained ski trails out there. The trail crosses a small beaver pond, then gently climbs up a ridge into warmer temperatures. After following the ridge for nearly a mile, it loops back down to where we started. No cancellation temperature.
We will meet at a small pull off on the side of Rosie Creek Trail. To get there, take the Parks Highway to Cripple Creek and drive down it until it becomes a dirt road. The next right is Rosie Creek, and the pull off is a little over a mile down. I'll be there in a red pickup truck with a friendly white dog who loves company.
Leader: Steven Hansen (stevenseanhansen (at) gmail.com; 799-5627)
Get Out the Blues Tour: Ace Lake
When: Sunday, December 18, 2016
Start time and place: Meet at Gold Hill Store on the Parks Highway at noon
Estimated time: Three hours
Description: We will drive to Gold Hill Road to access the trail to Ace Lake. At this time of year it can be cold along this mostly flat, low trail so dress appropriately for conditions. Friendly dogs are welcome.
Leader: Barb O’Donnell 479-0302
Annual Pre-Solstice Ski Tour: East Eldorado Ridge to Goldstream Road
When: Saturday, December 17, 2016
Start time and place: 11am, pullout across from Buck’s Drive on Goldstream Road
Estimated time: 4-plus hours
Description: Start with a short car shuttle to the trailhead at the top of Waterford Road. This is a long ski along the top of the ridge to the east of Eldorado Creek and then dropping down to Eldorado Creek Trail and skiing back to our cars. A short section will involve good snow plowing or telemarking skills.
Leader: Mike Schmoker (msfbcski [at] gmail.com; 455-6848)
Goldstream Bushwhack and Ski Adventure!
When: Sunday, December 4, 2016
Start time and place: 11am, Ballaine Road, Goldstream Creek pullout
Estimated tour time: 2 to 4 hours
Description: There is a string of ponds and sloughs on the NE side of the Goldstream flats. Perhaps it is the old channel before it was ditched? Makes for good skiing with scant snowfall. To start we will have to cross the creek via road bridge, then clamber down the embankment and make it a half-mile on the trail before bushwhacking to the first pond. Goldstream Valley records the coldest temperatures in the borough.
Leader: Stan Justice (479-5017; stanjustice [at] acsalaska.net).
(canceled due to cold temperatures)