Winnipeg’s unusually warm weather hinders winter activities at Windsor Park Nordic Centre

Winnipeg has had a usually warm weather pattern for winter which has led to some challenges regarding winter activities in the city.

At Windsor Park Nordic Centre manager Laurie Penton says for cross-country skiers the conditions have been difficult and they have had to get innovative.

“Even yesterday’s melt was not very welcome, and minus 11 overnight, so it’s a little bit of dicey patches. But it got renovated, as we do, we renovated it this morning,” she said.

The park reopened on Saturday after poor snow conditions caused it to close for several weeks.

Click to play video: 'Other options for Winnipeggers as skating trail remains closed'

Other options for Winnipeggers as skating trail remains closed

“This year we got open after Christmas and were open for 18 days. Then the big melt happened and so all through February was essentially a write-off,” Penton said.

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Comparatively, the park was open for four months last year. The park has invested in many ways in an attempt to keep the doors open especially if there is another unusually warm winter.

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Something new the park has added this year are machines that create man-made snow. “We’ve been able to use that to augment the trails, mixed with a little bit of fresh snow that’s fallen,” said Penton.

In the years to come Penton says they should be able to create enough snow to withstand midseason melts and keep some trails open all year long.

Staff are hoping next year they’ll be better able to keep up with the consistently high demand demonstrated by the number of visitors on the weekend.

“All different levels of skiers taking advantage of our conditions and making the best of what’s left of the winter snow,” said Penton.

— With files from Global’s Katherine Dornian

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