A sunny Sunday afternoon in January was the perfect day to go check out a few kilometers of trails through a local green (winter white) space in the Edmonton suburbs.
I thought Sundays were for run days, you ask?
But with my knee-hab progressing at the snails pace that injured ligaments are wont to do, I made my rounds at the gym this morning logging some klicks on the stationary bike then logging a couple klicks of running intervals on the treadmill and…
Those ski trails through the vast swath of snow in the utility corridor were calling.
By chance we live near a utility corridor. There are at least two of these in the city that run laterally, east to west, across the suburbs. About fifty meters wide and spanning the width of the whole city, ish, their purpose is to leave some big open space to run transmission powerlines or major infrastructure without going over, around or through homes. And since there only a minimal day-to-day danger associated with well constructed infrastructure, the utility corridors become huge greenspaces where the only development that can legally occur is an asphalt path or an unfixed trash bucket.
If you live right up against one of these corridors (and many people do) you are, of course, dealing with the generally unsightly view of massive power transmission towers out your back window.
If (instead, like me) you live just a few blocks away, you are less bothered by the view but still close enough to walk to a place where long straight asphalt trails make great running paths or groomed ski trails emerge mysteriously in the winter and stretch for kilometers upon kilometers of gently rolling straightaways.
We parked in the recreation centre parking lot adjacent to where the ski trails passed and hopped aboard, exploring for an hour of exhausting skiing on a Sunday afternoon.
My knee was a bit tender from my morning workout, but in the end it was a perfect day for some low-impact outdoor sport, and a bit of suburban skiing adventure, too.