Trail Detail

Balsam Branch Trails
Amery, WI
12k
Skating/Classic
Yes
No
1 Main Lot 1 Kennedy Park
[ NWS ]
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Notes

The Balsam Branch trails are open to the public for no charge. When there is snow, tracks are set by Polk County Park and volunteers. The trailhead parking area is always well plowed. Toilet facilities are available at the nearby Kennedy Environmental center but no coffee shop or warming facility. Roughly 4K of lighted trails added in 2010.
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Trail Reports

Reports 1 to 10 of 20    Month: Jan | Dec
Sunday, January 19, 2020
Morning
Grooming 
[ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]
All trails were groomed and tracks reset this morning, conditions should be excellent. Skiing should be great.
(Craig Johnson)
Saturday, January 18, 2020
Afternoon
Grooming 
[ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]
All trails are groomed and tracked. The snow has covered up all those pesky leaves for now. Bundle up and enjoy the trails this cold weekend!
(Barry Tulkki)
Wednesday, January 15, 2020
Morning
Grooming 
[ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]
Beautiful day grooming today. All trails groomed for skate and track. We groomed in the last few inches of snow we received. We plan to groom again Saturday. Enjoy the trails - they're beautiful.
(Greg Hoelscher)
Tuesday, January 14, 2020
Afternoon
Firsthand: Classic 
[ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]
Beautiful afternoon ski at Balsam Branch. The latest snowfall had not yet been groomed. Probably 2" of snow with just a tiny crusty surface on top. The classic tracks were skied in by one or two people ahead of me and therefore extremely nice. It was a nice pre-sunset ski on Extra Blue!
Photos:
(Ben Mullin)
Thursday, January 9, 2020
Evening
Firsthand: Freestyle 
[ Trails Open: All, B skis ]
I skated about half the trails, mostly blues. It's been quite a while since we had snow and the trails were pretty beat up. The skate lane was cupped pretty bad in a few places and a little icy. There was a lot of debris in some places and the classic tracks had a lot of leaves in them, a classic skier I talked to said they were starting to be pretty hard to ski. Thanks volunteers!
(Adam Scholl)
Monday, January 6, 2020
Afternoon
Firsthand: Freestyle 
[ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]
The trail has not been groomed in several days so the skate lane is hard packed from heavy use and it is a little beat up. The classic tracks are in fine shape if you can put up with lots of leaves. Skating will likely be more enjoyable if you are trying to decide. Thank you volunteers.
(Paul Pedersen)
Friday, January 3, 2020
Afternoon
Firsthand: Classic 
[ Trails Open: All, B skis ]
I skied all or some of all trail colors on fish scale classic skis Friday afternoon. Grooming looked to be a day old. The fish scales dragged on leaves plenty. Track was good but showing wear on the Blue and Green trails. The deck was also showing wear, as in smooth. Wear was more pronounced in the sharp turns on the Blue. On a non issue Green turning downhill, the right ski suddenly went over and out of the poling track. The ski tip buried. You can guess the rest. There was a somewhat tense moment on the .9k Black trail off the parking area. This link had the fewest leaves with an excellent track and deck. Headed outbound after the clmbing ends, there is a sharp downhill with a left turn. The fish scale skis lack the little rail that keeps the skin skis running straight out of track and helps with turning. I cleaned the turn but it was close. The Balsam groomer did what I wish more groomers would do: the track setter was lifted on a demanding downhill, eliminating a potential problem. Expect to find scattered areas of new leaves on the Blue and Green trails, and ski accordingly.
(Jeff Bolte)
Wednesday, January 1, 2020
Afternoon
Firsthand: Classic 
[ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]
Classic skin skis were not a good choice today in well worn and somewhat polished track, which included some soft sidewalls. I stayed on the interior Blue and Green trails. Skiing was out of track as needed. There is a long and fun downhill romp on one of the blue segments. The skis would wobble around in the widened track, not something I wanted on a fast and turning downhill like the one mentioned. Eventually the skins were swapped for wood, which ran slower but behaved better. I knew the skins would not grab leaves. The pine tarred grip zone on the woodies ran clean over the leafy areas. I was there as daylight was fading. The classic track had been well used to destroyed. The skate deck had a wonderful soft fluff on top. Icy areas were there but not abundant. Lots of skiers today!
(Jeff Bolte)
Wednesday, January 1, 2020
Afternoon
Grooming 
[ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]
All trails now groomed and tracked. Skating deck getting more firm. Get out and ski while the trees are still covered with beautiful snow.
(Barry Tulkki)
Tuesday, December 31, 2019
Afternoon
Firsthand: Classic 
[ Trails Open: Most, Good skis ]
Magical! Sunset streaming through snow crusted trees. Well-groomed. Firm classic track. Some soft spots in skate deck. A few leafy spots, and a bit of ice under snow in low places. Overall excellent conditions. Thanks Balsam branch for excellent grooming, and for the lights! Happy New Year.
Photos:
(Bob McKlveen)

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