How did the Canadian Snow Gauge in Wawa Start? 

Chica and the Canadian Snow Gauge

When we first bought the Motel in 1999, we were open year round, and Snowmobilers did not have information on the Internet. 

Snowmobilers had to PHONE Hotels to get information on Snow, Weather and Trail Conditions. 

Over the years, many guests complained to me about incorrect information they would receive from both, American and Canadian Hotel Staff. Those stories inspired me to draw this cartoon. LOL! 

Mo's Snowmobile Cartoon

This would never happen in Ontario anymore – all the open/closed Trail info is on

Even though it was the Internet Dark Ages, I knew how to run a website, and started a “Snow Cam” so the Snowmobilers could go to my website and watch the snow pile up. We showed snow depth by stacking the Canadian Snow Gauge in Wawa – 4 Beer Cases High. 

Beer case snow gauge

Canadian Snow Gauge – 4 Beer Cases 2004

I photographed snow depths daily, reported trail conditions, designed Trail Maps, listed trail closures/openings, photographed the snowmobilers & put them on the Snow Cam. (Remember, way back then, before the age of Facebook, Instagram, etc., it was rare to have your photo on the internet.) 

Wawa snow gauge northern lights motel

Off to the Hot Tub!

I took thousands of photos – We had so much fun!! (Many have been uploaded to our Facebook Page)

Wawa Northern Lights Snow Angels

Snow Angels!

Wawa snow gauge northern lights motel

Even though we went seasonal in 2005, I continued to run the Snow Cam for the dedicated Snow Watchers.

Wawa snow gauge

Wawa snow gauge

Chica showed up in 2011 to help us measure snow. Frosty would come by every once in a while too. (Frosty had a crush on Chica)

Wawa snow gauge

The 4 Cases are usually buried by the end of February.

Wawa snow gauge

 We never buried 5 cases until 2014

Wawa Snow Gauge

Chica was always so much fun to hang out with… She would join us in Cuba..

chica in cuba

And she was a GREAT Bartender..

chica the bartender

Chica was very concerned about our property damage after the 2012 disaster, and had to check it out.

Northern Lights Motel Disaster 2012

Chica in the front pit – 2013

Wawa Northern Lights Motel Disaster

Chica in the back pit – 2013

But 2014’s winter was so BRUTAL, a mean snowman came and ate Chica’s baby! Oh no!

Mean Snowman

Chica Ran away and someone spotted her on the Magpie Reservoir, paddling toward Dubreuilville…

chica in the canoe

She found a new fellow at the Magpie Relay Hotel  and decided to stay. But she’s too busy dating The Groomer Guy, and no longer measures snow. 

Chica at the Magpie

With Chica gone, I stopped photographing the snow for 2 or 3 years, but I missed it, and the Snowmobilers missed it. So I stacked it again November 2017 and ran it on the blog. 

The Blog was fun this year – and a Beer Drinking Snowman showed up to polish off the snow gauge! 

Wawa Northern Lights Snow Gauge Snowman

Wawa northern lights snow gauge

Wawa snow gauge northern lights motel