Sunday, 6 April 2014

Ski Touring at Big Hill in Gros Morne National Park

by Keith and Heather Nicol
      On Saturday, April 5 we headed to Big Hill in Gros Morne National Park to check out the snow pack and possibly investigate an avalanche chute that we noted when scouting the area on Google Earth. I was joined by telemarker Rick Lichtenauer and his dog Molly and we fully recommend this trip for its stunning views and easy to access trailhead at 21 0441495 E 5484284 N. We followed the ridge through the open birch forest and fortunately a group of snowshoers had done the trip recently and their tracks made the route easy to follow. We never did get down to the avalanche chute - we thought we would save that for a trip when there was a bit more snow but we did circumnavigate the Big Hill summit at 639 meters. We measured the snowpack in several areas and found anywhere from 20 cm to 1 meter of snow along the ridge. Since this area faces southwest the snow won't last here like it will in other places so we recommend heading up there soon.

Rick and Molly heading up through the open forest
The views of ice covered Bonne Bay and the surrounding mountains were superb

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