Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Preliminary Birkie Wax Discussion #2 - Glide

Weather
There seems to be a consensus forming that the Birkie trails could see some snow Friday night. Overnight low will be in the range of -11C with the daytime high rising to around +1C on Saturday.

Bear in mind that the daytime high won't hit until around 2:00 p.m. on Saturday... more on that below.
Photo courtesy of the Birkie facebook page.
Trail Conditions
Current reports on trail conditions are varied. A summary of the most recent updates is as follows:
  • Hard, frozen tracks
  • Best conditions in a while
  • Firm & nice
So the bits of recent snowfall east of Edmonton seem to have accumulated into some coverage. Additionally, I know that the volunteers have been out on the trails working on snow farming. So coverage should be adequate.

We understand that grooming will take place on Friday morning. A best guess is that the grooming will pull up lots of the old, granular snow and mix it in with the fresh that will have accumulated.
Photo courtesy of the Birkie facebook page.
Glide Wax
Although the daytime high is relatively warm on race day, don't be fooled into using a warm glide wax. It has been cold all week... really cold! And with a chilly morning low on race day and minimal solar effect from the sun (it is early February, after all), the snow will not warm significantly.

Additionally, although there has been great work with respect to snow farming, as well as some fresh accumulation, expect that the grooming will pull up lots of older, granular snow.

Based on this, we continue to recommend a hard initial underlayer, followed by a hard layer of race wax. Options to consider would include:

Underlayer
  • Swix LF4 (or other hard green glide wax)
  • Rex RCF Pink
  • SkiGo LF Graphite
  • Solda S30
  • SkiGo C380
Race wax (HF options will continue to provide an advantage)
  • Holmenkol Speedbase Cold
  • Holmenkol Racing Mix Cold
  • Rex HF31
  • Toko HF blue
  • Swix HF4
As you can see, we are recommending colder, harder options as the best choice.

Further Testing and Posting
We will be onsite at the Brikie trails early Friday morning doing final testing. This will include both grip and glide and we will plan to post an update before lunchtime on Friday.

Long live the Birkie!