A new poll has the NDP gaining even more ground on the Conservatives, and experts say exceptional youth interest in the election could be responsible for the great orange wave of 2011.

The latest Angus Reid Public Opinion survey, conducted Monday and Tuesday, has the New Democrats sitting at 30-per-cent support, just back from the Tories' 35 per cent. The Liberals have slipped to just 22-per-cent support.

Among decided voters between the ages of 18 and 34, NDP support shoots up to 37 per cent, up seven per cent since the middle of the month. The Conservatives trail behind at 28 per cent, followed by the Liberals with 22 per cent.

Young people are usually thought of as a politically apathetic group, but a predicted big turnout for the under-35s could end in unprecedented results for the NDP.

"The NDP has really skyrocketed over the past couple of weeks, partly because of Layton but also because of the way they are looking for those younger voters," Angus Reid pollster Mario Canseco said.

New media might be partly responsible for putting youth in the New Democrats' corner.

University students have used YouTube to encourage their peers to get out to advanced polls in so-called "vote mobs," while the party has proven adept at using social media like Twitter to get its message out.

"This is the way to connect with this generation," Canseco said.

He pointed to the English-language debate, when Jack Layton used the web-savvy expression "hashtag fail."

"He's speaking to this group, and this group can look at something like that, relate to it, and say this is somebody I want to support. A lot of people thought it was just a joke, but when they're at 37 per cent, it suddenly becomes interesting," Canseco said.

It still remains to be seen whether young people will actually vote on May 2, but voter turnout at the advance polls this year did set records, rising 34 per cent over 2008 numbers.

Despite the rise in NDP support, the Angus Reid poll also found that the party has the lowest proportion of committed voters at 71 per cent. The Conservatives have a much tighter lock on their support, with 84-per-cent committed voters.

The Angus Reid poll was conducted through online surveys of 2,040 Canadians. The polling company claims a margin of error of plus or minus 2.2 per cent 19 times out of 20.

With a report from CTV British Columbia's Rob Brown