Help for postholers

23 Mar

I have begun my “postholer” outreach program. I’m talking about ski trail walkers who punch big “postholes” in the soft late season snow with their feet. Along with mountain bikers and horses, they ruin prepped trails for skate skiing. Their giant footprints and tracks freeze when temperatures drop at night making it anywhere from un-enjoyable to impossible to skate on local ski trails. I now stop to talk to them about the problems they create. Scandinavians are often shy and non confrontational,  so this usually freaks them out. That in itself can be a good dissuasive effect.

Here’s what I tell them:

What walkers and riders do to ski trails depends largely on conditions. When the trails are frozen rock-hard, people can walk and ride a fat-tire bike on them almost without it being noticed. When the trails are soft, though, the walkers punch big holes in the surface, and the tires of the bikes carve out snow snakes seemingly designed to grab a ski and pitch a skier on her face.

If walkers and bikers had the sense to stay off the trails when they are soft, there would seldom be a problem. But they don’t. Because sense is not common.



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