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The lake effect snow machine has turned on and the northerly winds have arrived which provides our area with lake effect snow – as opposed to far eastern Marquette County and Houghton County as has been the case 90% of the time up to this point.  It’s been frustrating to watch as most of the big lake effect has gone to the east or west of our area.  We’ll see in the end how much new snow we get out of the next two days as most of the developing lake effect snow is on the lower half of the marathon course.  Last night there was 4 new inches and the trail to the west of CR 510 (the private land area which is more rugged) did get some more too which should have that section up to snuff.  Prior to that the Forestville area trails received another 3 inches.  In total over the last week perhaps 7-10 inches of new snow is on the ground.  Not bad!

Very cold temperatures are persisting which inhibits any “system” snow in the area but the 10+ day forecast indicates that a warm up to normal and even above normal temps could be on the way.  Provided that doesn’t turn out to be a January thaw with rain we ought to see a little snow here, a little snow there, and the total accumulations over the next 3 weeks should be prime for our trail.  We’ll get some news on the trail west of CR 510 in the upcoming days/weeks.  There is also a new logging operation in there – we’ve contacted the parties involved to make sure they don’t cause access issues for us and our trail.

All of that said, the skiing at Forestville has been really good so that is not of concern and there ought to be plenty of ice on the lake crossings and the basin with all of the cold we’ve had!  Plenty of skiers are out getting their training in and there’s certainly no reason to not be out!  How much of a “death march” the Noque feels to the normal human being is directly related to how much you’ve been getting out to ski.  Those of us on the race committee all work full time too – so we get it.  It’s hard to get out after work when it’s cold and dark but it’s always worth it!

To recap – there are just a few questions to answer on snow depth west of CR 510.  If I had to guess we’d be able to run the whole race today with a pretty good deck – maybe some uneven trail on the western part is all.  If all goes well, we’ll get more, and that should all level out – certainly with the course widening and improvements made to the trail to get it open with lower snow amounts.  All in all – we should be in good shape.  We will keep an eye on the weather and as the race date gets closer we will have more extensive details for all.

See you out on the trails!

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