Sunday, January 9, 2022

Snowshoe: White River Snow Park, Government Camp, OR


AllTrails map

Getting There

All it took was the post by Mt Hood Meadows that it was blue bird day at the mountain. After a lame trip up toward Mt St Helens but not actually making it to anywhere good, I wanted to get some exercise.

The conditions on Hwy 26 were good, mostly dry until the straightaway passed Ski Bowl. At 10:30a, there were a lot of cars n trucks. up there. The Ski Bowl parking lot was overflowing and there was a horrendous line going up to the Timberline. I considered stopping at Trillium Lake but that parking lot was super park and overflowing too. 

Next up: White River Sno-Park, an old favorite. The overflow parking lot was not plowed and the middle of the main parking lot was not plowed either. I managed to eek out a spot in the lot north of the bridge (Barlow Road).  

The Hike (Snowshoe)

Length: 6.02 mi
Elevation gain: 1,686 ft
Moving time: 2:42:21
Total time: 3:05:41
Avg. pace: 26:58
Calories: 1,264

First hike of 2022!

I hadn't used my gear since last winter but the boots felt nice with my Darn Tough socks. I grabbed my poles but neglected to switch out the baskets. I headed down the road toward main parking and hopped onto the snow. I realized I'd left my phone so no photos and no trail tracking. I considered forging on but also realized my eye wear wasn't right, I need goggles.

I crossed under the bridge because I'd seen some snowshoers. Maybe I could get back to the car this way. The creek was flowing too quickly, I was cut off. I crossed under the bridge again and went back to the car to get the phone and goggles.

I started the trip tracking on AllTrails and started hiking.

I took the trail up as far as possible. I sat on the rock in the photo below, the highest point on this ridge. It's not a marked trail but is the starting point for skiers. Actually there were lots of fresh tracks on the adjacent ridges, true die hards.

On the return trip, I descended through the trees. There was a well-packed trail that made it easy to keep a steady, comfortable pass. I really like these snow shoes because they rarely feel like they're in the way. I don't do anything special with my stride.