Another awesome day into Hodges. We had a group from Gander today who have been to Mount Peyton many times. They were very impressed with Hodges and the conditions. We had a ball at the landing drift and a few of us got some pretty good air. The conditions here on the roads and trails are perfect. There is some icy road for the first km or so into Cornfield but after that they are flat and lots of snow. We have openings all this week so whether you stay at the chalets or not you should take advantage of the great riding around here.
Archive for March, 2012
Had a great tour today and all hands considered the conditions to be excellent. I am going to leave it at good on the site for now because the open country is still not what I consider to be excellent. The roads and trails were excellent riding however and so are the lakes and ponds. The forecast for this area is 0 or colder (much colder with the wind) and some snow pretty well everyday for the next week….so that looks very good for a normal length season as we have always reached the end of April. It snowed all day into Hodges but not at the chalets. We got about 5 inches here but about 10 – 12 inches into Hodges. For now my main goal is to burn gas and get what I can out of the rest of the season!
Due to another dump of 5 inches last night and more on the way I have to upgrade to very good or even excellent as the trails (at least where we ride) are nice and flat and now have this powder on top of the hard pack. Just heading out on tour now and will update again this evening.
Not over yet! Just had a great weekend on the sleds with an awesome group. Although the roads and trails were hard dues to the temperature we had about an inch of snow fall on Saturday which kept the machines cool. Lots of snow in Hodges. The open country through Peace Valley is still nearly void of snow in places but there is enough to pick your way though. We could have avoided it and kept to the trails but the view, as always, is too much to pass up. A few stucks in around Hodges Pass but a great time had by all! We decided to truck to Dawes Pond Road on Saturdays Gaff tour as we had some people two up. I also knew that conditions in the Mary March Brook area were excellent and wanted to spend the bulk of our day there. We had 4 new guys join our group today and two of them had overheating issue so it was a good thing we started at Dawes Pond or it would have been a very long day. Interestingly, they were both on Yamahas with 4 cylinders. There were two other Yamahas there with 3 cylinders and didn’t have a hitch. They were all very similar machines. The temperature stayed very cold all day which kept the trails hard until we got to the Mary March Brook area where there was loads of soft snow to play in. With 15 machines we ripped up the brook from one end to the other…a great time and certainly no overheating! For those of you booked in next week we are supposed to get snow on Monday and Tuesday….30 to 40 cm! We are in for an awesome week of snowmobiling! For those of you thinking about coming out you should tell the boss you are sick and come out to ride Sheila’s Brush"!
The picture of the GTX is of one of our rentals which we are now selling. This one is a 2009 with 6500 km on it. I just installed a new windshield on this one.
We also have a 2010 also in excellent shape with 4200km on it. These rentals are kept 100% maintained…I don’t want any failures while rented and have never had an issue with either machine.
I will let the 2009 go for $5000 and the 2010 for $5600. If you are looking for this style machine you can’t go wrong with these two. I just saw a 2010 on NL classifieds for $7500 and many others priced much higher than mine. You can try before you buy too!
Its been a while since I posted on the snow conditions, mainly because there hasn’t been much change. In was up to the Gaff Topsails for a ride today though where we had an awesome ride. We left Rocky Brook Camps and took the Powderhorn Lake Dawes Pond route to Goodyear’s Cove Road. There were a couple sections of road that between Powderhorn and Dawes Pond that were near bare and we had to run the ditch. Other than that its was easily passable. Once we got to Dawes Pond the roads were excellent going with loads of snow. Goodyear’s Cove road was also awesome going with lots of snow both in the woods and on the road. I’d say there is at least three feet of snow in the woods. Once we got on the Gaff the road was almost void of snow for a couple windswept sections but easy to get around. The open country was not too bad until we approached the Mary March Brook area where it suddenly turned into a winter wonderland. Loads of snow, lots of ice and best of all lots of jumps and play areas. We went all the way up the brook well past the Quarry. Even though it was around zero degrees the snow was still fairly soft most areas. If it was warmer it would have been even better. I could have ripped this place up all day! But we did have to leave eventually. The picture was taken on a drift on Mary March Brook. Not the usual endless 15 footers in this area but still lots of them around 8 feet or so which will be fun on a warmer day. We took the tracks back to Millertown Junction. Most of the run was in really good shape but would have been much better on a warm day. We took the “groomed trail” from Skull pond back to the truck. 90% of the trail was excellent going but a few windswept areas made for annoying bare spots so I think I am done with that road for this year. For the most part it was an awesome run today with a few places to avoid.
I was away on the west coast for two days of riding so I haven’t been into Hodges since Sundays Tour but I am sure the past post on that area stand the same…good to go except for the bogs which can be navigated o around the edges. I might as well give an update on the two areas on the west coast I just rode. We wen tot the Gregories on the first day, Monday from the Jackladder. The going was good with lots of snow all the way in and will remain that way for a while I am sure. Like here though its icy when it cools down and darting becomes a little annoying. The best of the tow days was Tuesday when we went up Taylors Brook Road. The trail was pretty flat for the most part all the way into Eagle Lodge. We couldn’t do much play for the first 30 km or so as there were a lot of rocks ect showing through the snow and there were a couple strikes. Once we got inside Eagle Lodge though there was lots. We spent most of the day along the edge of the high country climbing the cut-lines. What I liked about TBR over the Gregories is that there were fewer people. Especially once you got off the main drag to the gorge. We had a ball.
I will be posting a blog on Hodges in a few days but winter isn’t over yet!
As many of you are aware we had two days of high temperatures and high winds and the snow took a huge cutting. The roads and trails are still in really good shape with plenty depth for the most part but we need some powder on top to make for a comfortable ride. We had a big group out yesterday and they all came back raving about the trip despite the hard packed snow. We had to alter the route to stick to the roads for the most part but they were in really good shape so we had fun. On the last part of the day we went to Hodges Pass where the snow was still pretty dry and the going was great. You could go anywhere! All we need is for the excess water to run out of the brooks and valleys and some snow on top and we will be in great shape again. Anyways, for now I have downgraded the conditions to good.
The first picture below is from the shoulder of the Main Top on the Gaff. Some areas lost much snow from the wind but you can easily get around them. Once we got to the quarry area there was loads of snow. The second picture was also the Gaff and the 3rd was Hodges Pass.
There were lots of machines on the go yesterday as we hosted Rendezvous 2012. I am on the organization committee but I was too busy with tours to participate. I just heard from another committee member who told me the weekend went very well. Because Grand Falls – Windsor lost pretty well all the snow the group had to trailer as far as Red Cliff (10 km East of here) to unload. Other than that the ride went very well other than two machine overheated a couple times. Interestingly enough they were trail machines and all the mountain machines did fine. Another great event for sure!
Its finally shaping up! Another storm hit us this week…just in time for the Tony West Group too. The bys are here on their 3rd consecutive year now and already planning a the 4th! The first day was during the storm on Hodges. What a blast! I’d say we had at least 60 stucks…thank God for the sno-bungee. Tony caused an avalanche on the landing drift and slid into the trees. I was there today and the drift is at least 40 feet high now. Needless to say, I didn’t attempt it today. We spent a good 2 hours trying to climb the North side but couldn’t get much past the base. Hodges Pass was awesome although we thought it wise not to try the South side because of time and a couple inexperienced riders. We had lots of fun and stucks on the North side though. That’s my Expedition after darting up a steep side to highmark around a large fir tree in the background. Got around the tree easy enough but dropped into a hole….no camera tricks required in that pic as the machine was down past the hood. Look familiar Jay P.? LOL Yes, that is two wide tracks stuck side by side. Tony was the star of the day with lots of air and the only one to climb the landing drift.
The next day I wanted to spice it up for the bys. They have been to the Gaff several times already so I though it would be the perfect time for the South Brook loop again with all the powder. As you can see from the pic we certainly were pushing powder with a steady supply constantly flying over the hood. It was a hard day for frozen goggles for everyone. As for the short tracks they had to stop on a level and behind another machine. That’s me in front. After a good meal at Eddies Restaurant we pushed on breaking trails most of the way. Anyone who could carve was carving much of the way. It was a phenomenal day and for all the guys it was the best day they had ever spent on a machine. I think I should rename the South Brook Loop to the Kippens Ridge Expedition with 220 KM of every kind of snowmobiling you can have!
Last weekend we were honoured to receive the Sustainable Tourism Award presented by Parks Canada at the Hospitality Newfoundland convention in Gander
The Sustainable Tourism Award recognizes that the long term sustainability of tourism depends on the delivery of a high quality product and a welcoming spirit among our employees and our host communities. It also depends on the wise use and conservation of our natural resources; the protection and enhancement of our environment; and the preservation of our cultural, historic and aesthetic resources.
Riverfront Chalets and Rafting started with a main product of rafting and has since expanding to offer canoeing, sea kayaking and white water kayaking courses along with packages that include instruction, rentals, and guided day and multiday tours.
Riverfront Chalets also features four and a half star fully equipped chalets with landscaping that showcases character in the huge rock walls, the outdoor river-front saltwater hot-tub and the interlocked wooded decks that connect it all together. Carved into the natural landscape with as little disturbance to nature as possible, extreme care was taken in constructing the chalets to ensure no unnecessary trees were harmed, and whenever possible only local building materials were used.
Over the last 15 years Riverfront Chalets and Rafting has been involved with many initiatives to protect the Exploits River from further industrial harm and to enshrine it as a model of sustainable adventure tourism. With beliefs that are all about fostering appreciation and enjoyment of natural and cultural heritage resources, every single service provided leads Riverfront back to this objective.
This award was presented at the Tourism Professional Development Luncheon by Carol Sheedy, Parks Canada.
Chalets – South Brook
Well I can’t say enough about this trip! It’s a route that you will consider as one of the best, if not the best trip you had ever done. If you have decent GPS skills you can easily do this one with-out a guide.
We had our first client based trip last Tuesday and the feedback was excellent! I can give you the main points and junctions in this trip description but it would be best if you uploaded the track to your GPS.
We left the chalets last Tuesday at 9 in the morning with 5 customers and two good friends…all eager for a long, scenic ride on a beautiful clear day. Leaving the chalets we went straight across the highway on Cornfield road and traveled to Rocky Brook warm up shack which took about 45 minutes. There we stopped for a break and chat about the beautiful day and the trip ahead. I didn’t want to stop too long as I knew we had much ground to cover and little extra time in the case of mechanical issues.