The higher than normal temperatures and lack of snow in the lower elevations is wreaking havoc throughout British Columbia and into the Prairies when it comes to recreational events.
100 Mile House’s popular Cariboo Challenge Jack Gawthorn Memorial Sled Dog Race had to be cancelled because of lack of mushers and dog teams.
Registration numbers are down at virtually every stop on the sled dog race circuit and there have already been cancellations in B.C. and across the Prairies.
Even though local organizers had a plan B to hold the event on The Hills Guest Ranch trails, mushers weren’t going to travel vast distances without races to attend along the way.
Cancelling the Cariboo Challenge was a real heart breaker for the local organizers who poured tons of time and energy into the preparations for the annual event.
However, the volunteers and organizers have lifted their chins and are in the process of planning for next year’s events.
Undoubtedly, area residents and local businesses are disappointed by the cancellation, as they will miss the fun and spin-off dollars the sled dog races provide for the community.
While the planning continues for the Cariboo Gold Rush Marathon, slated for Feb. 4, organizers are also nervously looking skyward.
They, too, would like to see a few more dumps of snow.
Meanwhile, there is a lot of snow in the higher elevations and outdoor enthusiasts are enjoying snowmobiling and other winter recreation activities.
However, avalanche predictors and other experts who worry about the stability of the snow ledges warn snowmobilers and backcountry skiers to be aware of the conditions before deciding to head up to the hills.
Folks are urged to check out www.avalanche.ca for up-to-date information, news, warnings and safety tips.
While they are enjoying the warmer than normal temperatures, area ranchers say they are also concerned about the lack of snow so far this winter.
They have been dealing with some drought conditions during the past few years, and they would definitely like to see some extra precipitation this winter.
Let it snow. Let it snow.