Although it may sound like a quote from the movie Scarface, it's peninsula skiers and not Tony Montana saying, "There's just not enough white stuff."
"We need a big dump," said Bob Frates, the director of the city of Kenai's Parks and Recreation Department.
The grooming operations previously shut down at the Kenai Nordic Trails located on the Kenai Golf Course have resumed despite continuing low snowfall amounts. However, grooming will proceed on a day-to-day basis according to Frates.
"There are a few thin areas, but it's definitely skiable," Frates said. "We hope to have the 5-kilometer loop in by this weekend, but we won't have tracks set."
The trail portions that were groomed were in pretty good shape as of Thursday. The Kenai Nordic Trails are mostly flat with some hills that may challenge beginning skiers.
The skiing at Tsalteshi Trails behind Skyview High School has been pretty good, according to Tom Seggerman of the Tsalteshi Trail Association. Tsalteshi Trails provides more than 15 kilometers of trails with varying degrees of difficulty to accommodate novice and experienced skiers alike.
"They groomed (Wednesday), but there's been barely enough snow to drag out," Seggerman said. "There's still not enough snow for classic tracks."
Seggerman remains hopeful that more snow will come soon. The Besh Cup, a qualification race for the Junior Olympics, is scheduled to be held at Tsalteshi Trails Jan. 18 and 19, but the competition could be relocated is there's not enough snow.
Dale Bakk, the Nikiski High School ski coach, said conditions there were slowly starting to improve.
"The trails are pretty good considering the conditions," Bakk said. "We've gotten an inch or two of new snow this week."
Tracks for classic skiing have been set on the 3-kilometer loop behind the Nikiski pool, but no tracks have been set on the 5-kilometer Nikiski Community Trails at the middle-senior high school.
"We're in a holding pattern waiting for more snow to bring us up to snuff," said Bakk.
The trails behind the Nikiski pool are mostly flat, with a few slight hills. The Nikiski Community Trails have some steep hills and are suited for intermediate or advanced skiers.
At the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge headquarters in Soldotna, folks have been using the trails for skiing and snowshoeing.
"The actual ski tracks are about 2 inches of compressed snow in most trail areas," said Candace Ward, a ranger at the refuge.
She pointed out that skiers should be aware of snow-loaded alders that are bent over the trails in many areas. Ward has been working diligently to remove these obstacles so skiers aren't "slapped in the face" by alder branches.
She also suggested caution be exercised when skiing under dense spruce trees, since snow may be only a dusting in these locations. These trees aren't on any downhill runs and can be easily watched for.
The Refuge's Nordic Lake orange and greens loops have been rerouted to remove six big hills in order to make true beginner loops.
In Seward, there had been some good skiing earlier in the week at Bear Lake and the Mile 12 Trail system located on the Seward Highway, according to Rich Houghton, a ski coach at Seward High School.
However, as off late Wednesday and early Thursday wet snow had turned into rain. The rain is expected to continue throughout the weekend and canceled a high school ski race that was to be held Saturday.
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