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Skiing and golfing, oh my! Mild weather treating the Ottawa Valley this March

It’s a sight usually reserved for Canada’s Rocky Mountain region — residents skiing in the morning and golfing in the afternoon.

But that was the reality in Calabogie Tuesday, making it a rare day for Michael Verriccheia and Julie Brown.

“Well, we went out skiing this morning. We couldn’t resist the weather, so we decided that we’d go out for probably our last run of the year,” Verreccheia said to CTV News.

Open ski runs at Calabogie Peaks. March 12, 2024. (Dylan Dyson/CTV News Ottawa)

“We were hoping to ski tomorrow, but it looks like we’re golfing again tomorrow.”

“The conditions were absolutely amazing,” said Brown. “It was cold enough that it was not slushy, and we really enjoyed our time on the slopes.”

The day in the Ottawa Valley started around the freezing mark, and rose to around 10 degrees by late afternoon.

After a morning on the slopes, Brown and Verreccheia were teeing off at Calabogie Highlands golf course just before 2 p.m.

“It’s a dream come true,” said Brown. “We just can’t believe that the golf courses are open at this time of the year, and the ski hills are still in really good shape.”

Calabogie Highlands said this year marked their earliest opening in history, adding that nearly 100 golfers had signed up for tee times Tuesday.

A golfer tees off at Calabogie Highlands. March 12, 2024. (Dylan Dyson/CTV News Ottawa)

“This year [we opened] March 8,” said Shawn Mosiondz, golf operations manager at Calabogie Highlands.

“Broke our previous record of St Patrick’s Day, which happened four times in our 41 year history.”

Mosiondz adds that tee times for the rest of the week are already filling up.

Across Calabogie Lake, the ski hills of Calabogie Peaks can be seen from Calabogie Highlands.

Calabogie Peaks as seen from across Calabogie Lake at Calabogie Highlands. March 12, 2024. (Dylan Dyson/CTV News Ottawa)

Families enjoying March Break had multiple runs to choose from, with general manager Brian Bunch blaming the lack of snow in backyards from enticing more riders out.

He tells CTV News Calabogie Peaks is anticipating to stay open until the end of March.

“I would think we’d like to stay open until the end of the month. Fortunately we have cooler temperatures and at nights we are able to groom, so we’ll go as long as we can.”

“People should be out there skiing and then coming out golfing right after,” says Verrecheia.

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