Early cold might be good for some things

Skaters gazing at closed section of Rideau Canal in 2007. This winter's skateway is not open yet, but that could come in December. Photo: Lucy Martin

Skaters gazing at closed section of Rideau Canal in 2007. This winter’s skateway is not open yet, but that could come in late December. Photo: Lucy Martin

I don’t know how you feel about current weather but our household was thrilled to be able to hit the ski trails in November. (OK, it was late November, but still!)

Early snow, lots of it, and now …bitter cold. Is there a bright side to that last development? Well, hopefully. The CBC has this:

The National Capital Commission says recent cold weather in Ottawa is making the earliest Rideau Canal Skateway opening in years a possibility.

A spokesperson for the NCC said the recent cold weather is favourable for an earlier opening to the skating season than past years and they’re hoping it could happen before the new year.

Don’t drive to Ottawa expecting to skate now. The ice needs to be at least 30 cm (11.8″) thick and apparently it hasn’t been tested yet. Plus there’s a warm spell forecast for later this week. But it’s looking good, overall. I’ll be sure to pass along updates on the canal season, probably in the In Box.

According to that same CBC story the Skateway has not opened before New Year’s since 2004. (The earliest recorded openings were Dec 18 in both 1972 and 1981).

Grey skies but good ice for this "Skate the Lake" race in 2011. Photo: Lucy Martin

Grey skies but good ice for this “Skate the Lake” race in 2011. Photo: Lucy Martin

And speaking of events that depend on good ice, as I wrote this post I got an email from organizers of “Skate the Lake” held in Portland, Ontario on the last weekend in January (that will be 1/25-26).

Skate the Lake is fast approaching and if the cold weather we are currently enjoying (?) is any indication we should have some great ice.
Not only is this the 10th addition of Skate the Lake but we are also hosting the North American Marathon Speed Skating Championship, and we certainly hope you are coming.

The email mentions they’ve been having a little trouble with their website, but it should be fixed soon. (It worked for me.) Check back later this week, if necessary. That’s a fun event, worth considering if you like outdoor ice skating.

Until then, stay warm, eh?

A sunnier day on the big oval in Portland, Ontario in 2008. Photo: Lucy Martin

A sunnier day on the big oval in Portland, Ontario in 2008. Photo: Lucy Martin

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2 Responses to “Early cold might be good for some things”

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  1. Pete Klein says:

    Early cold and sever cold is making it less likely snowmobiles will go through the ice.
    Also, if it gets cold enough and the polar bears start traveling south in search of warm blooded creatures to eat, we might get a break from the global warming people.

  2. Anne Vinyard says:

    Is it possible that the cold temps we have been enjoying (?) will reduce the tick population, or are they so cozy on the deer that it will make no difference?