The 38th PAL Great Labrador Loppet was an exciting event to remember. It was very worrisome on Friday night with blowing snow, 60-80 km winds and low visibility. But we persevered, sent our two pisten bullys (Menihek Nordic & Whitewolf Snowmobile Club) at 2:00 am to Fermont for the 28 km start, held them there until 6:00 am and then came to the Duley Park 10 km start and waited until an hour before the 10:00 am start so we could achieve the best possible track and skating course.
At 6:00am, on going out around the course start & finish areas, we found out that the snow had stopped, the winds were dying down and it was 0 C. The 38th PAL Great Labrador Loppet was a go. The course was set; 129 people had signed up to ski or snow shoe; all the start finish areas were ready; all the venues - Menihek, Smokey, Whitewolf and the Club Lagopede de motoneige in Fermont - were ready; Circular Road was barricaded; the railway from Bloom Lake was shut and guarded; the town trucks for the skis were at the mall, the buses came, the skiers arrived and away we went for the Loppet.
It was a great day for skiing, the course a challenge but it was warm. Lots of hard luck stories, the first moose observed on the Loppet trail. The rest stops, feed & refreshment stations were excellent, lots of volunteers and groups from Search & Rescue, H.O.W.L.S (Ham Radio), Patrol Whitewolf, Town of Labrador City, RNC & some Canadian Ski Patrol also skied the course.
The timing crew did a great job and people were really good sending in pictures of their Loppet experience.
The awards ceremony for youth was at 2:00 at White wolf, a great job there with food and refreshments for all Loppet skiers. In the evening, there was a banquet and awards ceremonies and dance at Smokey Mountain Ski Club for skiers and volunteers, guest speaker was Minister Nick McGrath. Smokey did an excellent job on the steaks and food. The dance after was a lot of fun.
Another successful PAL Great Labrador Loppet for the history books. We are very appreciative to all our skiers, organizers, staff, volunteers, and sponsors -- thank you all.
Looking forward to next year.........happy trails
Results are on www.zone4.ca