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Sign at 1km mark of trail

Skiing at Kejimkujik

This winter has been decent weather-wise in Nova Scotia. It has snowed fairly regularly and has remained cold enough for it to stay. All this means an opportunity to get outside. This year is the first year Kejimkujik National Park has had a trail grooming program for their cross-country ski trails. If my trip there was any indication, it was a fantastic idea. Since this is the first year, it looks like not too many people know about it. There were only a few other people on this trail during this visit. The weather was perfect, clear blue skies, not a breath of wind and a temperature around freezing. It doesn’t get any better than that if you like to be outside in the winter.

Here are a few photos I took during the day.

This is the sign at the 1km mark along the trail. You can stay left and go to Big Dam Lake, about 5.5km further, or go to the right and add the Flowing Waters loop, which adds another couple of kilometres to the total. I think it’s worth it.

Big Dam Lake Trail
Big Dam Lake Trail

This is a section of trail along the Flowing Waters loop. There was so much snow, it was simply incredible. It was also dead quiet, not even a breeze. In the woods and under the sun, it was quite warm.

Soft light on a snowy spruce branch
Soft light on a snowy spruce branch

The light was beautiful, and the lack of wind meant the snow stayed on the trees.

The early afternoon shadows were clear on the soft snow. This is on Big Dam Lake.

Shadows on snow at Big Dam Lake
Shadows on snow at Big Dam Lake

Here is a panorama of Big Dam Lake. You can see how incredibly sunny it was. Click the image for the full-size photo.

Panorama of frozen lake and blue skies
Panorama of frozen lake and blue skies

It was really hard to believe how much show there was. It may have been the best cross-country ski conditions I’ve ever seen. Here’s a shot of the snow piled up on top of the wood shelter at the Big Dam Lake backcountry campsite. You can clearly see the amount of snow there is.

Feet of snow piled on top of wood shelter
Feet of snow piled on top of wood shelter

Another great thing about Kejimkujik is that there are a few shelters available for use. So after the ski it was time to make some lunch and warm up. Luckily, someone had started the fire, it was already hot and ready to boil some water. There’s nothing like a wood stove after a few hours of skiing. This shelter is at Merrimakedge.

Wood stove at Merrimakedge
Wood stove at Merrimakedge

The shelter itself is great. It blocks out any wind and allows you to see the woods surrounding the place. It’s quite comfy in there when the fire is going and you’ve got some hot chocolate in you.

Shelter at Merrimakedge
Shelter at Merrimakedge

Not only is there a shelter and two stoves, the wood is also supplied, already cut and dried. It’s so good.

That’s it. I hope you enjoyed this little trip around the Big Dam Lake cross-country ski trail. Except for the Flowing Waters loop, the trail is also groomed for skate skiing and snowshoeing. I recommend it no matter how you go.

Wood pile at Merrimakedge shelter
Wood pile at Merrimakedge shelter

If you’d like to see the trail in Google Earth, download the KML file.

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