Snow problem! Officials confident weather will co-operate in time for Canada Games

There was not much sign of snow, but plenty of mud on the cross country trails at Brookvale on Tuesday. (Ken Linton/CBC - image credit)
There was not much sign of snow, but plenty of mud on the cross country trails at Brookvale on Tuesday. (Ken Linton/CBC - image credit)

With a month to go before the 2023 Canada Winter Games, and very little snow on P.E.I., officials remain confident they won't have to resort to contingency plans and move some of the outdoor events off-Island.

"We're not panicking yet," said Adam Clark, the director of capital projects and venues for the 2023 Canada Games.

There have been significant investments to upgrade the snowmaking ability at Mark Arendz Provincial Ski Park at Brookvale. But temperatures need to be at least in the -5 C range to make snow suitable for skiing, snowboarding and biathlon events, said Clark.

"We've had Freestyle Canada on our site … building a moguls training run and they remain confident that we're going to be in OK condition to host games at Brookvale. So certainly not panicking, but it's something we're monitoring daily."

Shane Hennessey/CBC
Shane Hennessey/CBC

If it turns out they can't host events at Brookvale, they will be moved to Crabbe Mountain and possibly venues in northern New Brunswick, Clark said.

Crabbe Mountain ready

"Those are, you know, really last resort plans. We don't want to go there for a whole host of different reasons, because we've got to look into different transportation plans, different athlete feeding plans — but we do have contingency venues for our sports if we had to move them," he said.

Crabbe Mountain has already been selected as a venue for freestyle skiing, alpine and para-skiing events because the hill at Brookvale is not high enough.

Ken Linton/CBC
Ken Linton/CBC

Jordan Cheney, the general manager at Crabbe Mountain, said the ski hill is prepared to host more events if necessary.

"Obviously we're prioritizing snowmaking on the events that we are confirmed to host but, you know, we've got snowmaking in the other places as well so that if it comes to that, we can kind of turn our focus to those fields of play as well."