Field sports teams are likely reminiscing about last year's relatively uninterrupted good weather when they look out to see much snow remains on the fields here in mid-April with more snow falling today.

Exactly when the fields open is in the hands of Mother Nature, says Gerry Murphy, Cochrane's Senior Manager of Community Services.

"Mother Nature really tells us when; we don't tell her anything," says Murphy.

The town's parks division has given notice that the snow and colder weather have delayed the opening of the fields and will be providing an update on their status when possible. In the meantime, stay off and be patient.

"Traffic on a field that's just coming out of winter is probably the worse time you can use it," he explains. "This is when the fields are delicate and most sensitive to traffic."

Sports clubs, though, understand this, he points out,

"They worked with our parks division and stay off of them until they are ready. We work hard to get them ready as soon as possible."

Also by this time last year, golfers had already has a few rounds under their belt and patriots of both local courses are anxious to hit the greens.

In the meantime, sports organization are working on plans B through Z to prepare their teams for their seasons ahead and have resorted to extended indoor sessions.

Some have been able to secure time on the Spray Lake Sawmills Family Sports Centre artificial turf, but overall the facility hasn't seen a huge increase in spring bookings, says Nick Quigley, bookings supervisor. They aren't fully booked for April, but when lacrosse goes full tilt in May and June timeslots become scarce.

Minor baseball has booked some additional hours in April, as they conduct their player evaluations, and the Alberta Field Hockey Association has booked a few hours, while the Cochrane High boys soccer team tried to book the turf but suitable hours weren't available. They've also received some inquiry from Calgary lacrosse and baseball leagues.

Minor soccer has booked the Cochrane Lions Events Centre as a temporary solution.

The Grizzlies men's rugby team has merely extended their indoor training in a horse arena just south of town as they prepare to enter Calgary's premier league.

Snow will give way to sunny, warmer temperatures come Friday, according to weather forecasts, but will return for a brief encore early next week, though it likely won't stick.

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