Ghost Lake just west of Cochrane is quickly becoming one of the most popular destinations in the wintertime.
For the third year in a row, a winter ice track has taken over Ghost Lake. Over the years it has grown significantly, from a small circular track to now boasting six tracks that total close to 10 kilometres long.
“We have tripled the size of the track now with something around 24 turns that just an amazing place to be on the weekend, that's for sure,” says Benjamin Laflamme, one of the designers of the drift track.
“For the design, we really looked at other tracks in the world, some of the tracks are based on some tracks in Japan. Most of them are designed based on trends that already exist in this world.”
“We clear the snow but otherwise, it's not much to maintain, it really depends on the weather.”
The growth of the track has directly translated to a growth in attendance, especially during the weekends.
“We don't count the people but our estimation is close to 2,000 people in one day. This year, we have had nice winter days on Sundays and I think we expect those days have 3,000 people who are there.”
While Laflamme and his teammates from Faster Higher maintain the tracks, Ghost Lake is a public area which means anyone can take their vehicles out onto the ice.
Laflamme suggests newcomers take it slow and learn the lay of the land before becoming drift masters.
“The first time you go there, I suggest to anyone to go and look at it. You don't want to drive your car on the actual track. It's very nice just to go and park on the side and look at people driving and any other team out there driving. It's pretty impressive.”
“Once you feel ready, you can head up on the track and we do one, two, three, and even up to five laps in slow mode.”
“Then you can start actually drifting a little bit faster. That is what's great about it.”
Vehicles taking advantage of the tracks range from ice racers to trucks and cars and even one worth half a million dollars.
“We had a guy that on with an Aventador SV, I think it’s a $500,000 car and the guy was ripping it”