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Carlington Hill - February 19, 2017


Gordo

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IMG_20170219_133554407.thumb.jpg.0a9ac959f03625127aefc23e107db960.jpgWith spring like conditions and lots of snow you would have thought I'd be out on the ski hills this weekend. Well I wanted to go to Mont Chilly but got stuck in town. This was kinda a good thing after looking at the webcams at Camp fortune and Mont Ste-Marie, it was crazy busy up there.  Instead I checked out Carlington Hill and discovered Alpine skiing, back country skiing and powder filled glades in downtown Ottawa!   The Carlington Hill is a water reservoir but it was also a mini ski hill with a t-bar from 1965-1990. Some t-bar pillars and pulleys can be seen in the photos. The hill used to be called Anne Heggtviet Hill for a while.  Anyway I put on my snow shoe skis (short wide skis with telemark bindings) and climbed through the woods on the right side of the hill now used mostly for tobogganers.  The skis have a built in skin which gives you traction going up hill.  The spring like snow was great for climbing and I could climb straight up the hill after each decent.  After a bunch of runs I went back into the woods and caught some powder in the trees.  Backcountry skiing in downtown Ottawa! 

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Wow, that's awesome. I've always been mystified by this hill, every time I go down the Queensway near Carling Avenue. I remember when I was younger, at a time when it may have still been operating at the end of the 90s, trying to visit (I say it was operating as it was listed in the local ski conditions at the time).

Looks very popular for sliding now. Where there other people skiing or boarding?

The slopes look great. Of course the vertical is probably 30-50m I would guess and the slope very short but being downtown, it's quite a legend. I actually practiced skiing when I was very young with my parents on Beacon Hill. Mainly a sliding hill, but big enough to ski if you hike up. I think it has an L-shaped profile. A top section that turns to the left then straight down the final pitch. It would be fun to scout out locations that would be good for some quick urban alpine touring around the city.

I'm really happy you got to visit it and share your experience with us. 

From the photos, some of the lift towers and the top bull wheel are still in place. Is the bottom bull wheel assembly still there or was it removed?

There was talk a few years ago of Camp Fortune re-opening this hill as a snow tubing park of some sort but the plans fell through. More recently, there has been news of possible mountain biking as well.

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No one was skiing or boarding when I was there but I have seen snow boarders and back country skiers in the past.  Your right about a planned mountain bike trail/course. I believe it just got approved by the city.  I think it may go though the gladed section on the left side and up to the top of the hill.   Didn't see any wheel assembly at the bottom just a pillar.  Also of note the hill has light posts all the way up on both sides. Not sure if they are used anymore though.  

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Great report on a local hill that gave so many young skiers an introduction to skiing. It's awesome that Carlington is still open for winter enthusiasts to enjoy!  

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Great report! Not being from Ottawa, I'm not familiar at all with this hill.

This reminds of the Université de Montréal ski slope on the side of Mount Royal in Montreal. It's been closed for many years, but I've heard rumors that there's interest to reopen it in the future. 

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