Saturday, February 15, 2014

A Perfect Day for a Little Snowshoeing!

After very little sleep last night due to my train getting into Spokane about 2 1/2 hours late, so getting to bed about 3:30, Annette and I headed up to Mt. Spokane State Park for some snowshoeing.

Annette had researched the park and printed off maps of the trails. We made lunches, and got out the door at about noon. Mt. Spokane is only about a 40 minute drive from Annette's. We stopped at the park office to get a Sno-Park pass. The Park Ranger showed us a good loop to take--the Kit Carson-Swift Gap Loop. It's 3 miles, starting out fairly easy, and progressing to more difficult. 

Annette heading down the trail (actually the Kit Carson Road--the trail came later).

We managed to get our snowshoes on and started walking. This being just the second time I've done this, I think I got my snowshoes on pretty quickly. Last time I went snowshoeing (at White Pass), the snow was light and powdery. This time, the snow was like cement. There was plenty of it, but the temps were in the 40s, and it was kind of melting. The trees were dripping to where it seemed like it was raining at times. 

The Kit Carson Rd climbed gradually for maybe a mile or so. At one point, both Annette and I had to pee. Lo and behold, there materialized a potty shack. Excellent, except...snow was blocking the door. We both partook of an "adventure pee".

At the top of the Kit Carson Rd, we came to a hut they are building. The outer structure is done, but there is nothing inside. Still, we went in and ate our sandwiches. Climbing up onto the porch was a little tricky. 
You can't really tell from the photo, but the snow did not quite reach the edge of the porch. 

Getting off the porch was also interesting. Annette opted to jump off. She was successful. I, on the other hand, could see myself executing a perfect face plant, so I sat down on the edge and scooted off.

From the hut, we took trail 100. This was definately a trail. We climbed up quite a bit more (me utilizing the climbing bars on my snowshoes). I had to be careful to not step on one snowshoe with the other. As we walked along this trail, Annette spied a huge fungus, with a hat of snow, attached to a tree. We decided a closer look (and photo) was warranted. It was a little tricky climbing up as the snow was quite soft and mashable, so even the snowshoes kept sinking a lot. But, we managed to get close enough to take a photo.

The getting down was just as interesting as the going up. We were just trying not to end up head first in the snow. Annette's mantra was, "Keep the tips up!"

Along the trail, Annette got a hankering to make a snow angel. Here is a video of that.

We made our way down the trail to where another trail came into the one we were on. There was a map there, and it looked like we could take that trail back to Kit Carson. It was actually a mountain bike trail. I think I'll stick to gravel and dirt roads on my bike. This single track stuff looks a little scary.

Once we got back to Kit Carson, it wasn't too much further back to the truck. It ended up being a beautiful day with blue skies and sunshine. A perfect day for a little snowshoeing!

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