Last Wednesday we had about six inches of snow so I gave this loop a try Friday around noon when the temperature reached a balmy 5F (It didn't reach 0 until about 10am up from -12 earlier). It's amazing how much heat you produce XC skiing as even in this frigid weather I wore only a base layer for a shirt. The temperature did get up to a toasty 9F at the peak of the day.
With the new snow, the skiing was pretty nice despite a few areas of thin cover. With the single digit temps and subzero windchill I didn't see an entire soul all day. I had about an inch of ice hanging from my chin by the time I finished.
A fresh dusting of snow Saturday morning inspired me to hit the same trail that morning. Being a warm 15F and a weekend, I did cross paths with a few snowmobiles but they basically just groomed the trail for me. I even saw another skier. The fresh snow sweetened the conditions.
Saturday night saw another 3 inches of snow. I decided go out on skis again. This time I skied in logging lands north of Sebec Lake in Barnard, ME. In the winter this place is pretty isolated. I skied here last weekend in hopes of possibly finding moose antlers or seeing a moose since they are fairly common here. I was out of luck. The skiing was not the best. Fog settled and warm air came with it hitting the upper 30s making the snow very sticky. I constantly had scrape accumulation off the base of my skis. The fog did lift though and besides a few moose and snowshoe hare tracks, I had the place to myself. After an 80 minute trudge I covered maybe 2.5- 3 miles before turning back. This area is backcountry and I had to break about 8-10 inches of recent snow as most of these trails are not used in winter. I made it back to the car in less than an hour since I retraced my old tracks. I think this shorter trek is even more exhausting than the longer town loop.
With the exception of a few moose and hare tracks, only my ski tracks as far as the eye can see.