Trip Report    

Basic Snowshoe - Barclay Lake

Forest road walk in the mist.

  • Road impassable/closed
  • Numerous downed trees on the road.  Wet snow.  No consistent snow until around 1900 feet.

The week before the trip I had been notified that the turn off road in Baring had two feet of snow covering it from the snow plows and that it was closed at the highway.  Since we had several days of rain and warmer temperatures, and adding the fact that there are houses on the other side of the tracks I figured that it would be likely the beginning of the road was open.  Was skeptical that we would be able to drive very far up the road but figured we would see how far we could drive before having to set out on foot.

Rained hard all night and still raining hard in the morning.  I always get last minute cancellations on trips when that is the case and this was no exception.  Down to four of us still sticking it out.  Traffic was much worse than usual in the morning.  I was a few minutes late to the park and ride, which I generally consider unacceptable for myself as a leader, but conditions where what they were.  Not only worse than usual traffic for early morning but an accident on 160th in the middle of the street one block from Brickyard.

Finally we all gathered together, picked up the final person in Monroe and we were on our way.  Rain lessened considerably by the time we reached the town of Baring.  There was some sort of work crew blocking the tracks when we got there but they eventually moved aside and let us through.  The road had a lot less snow than expected and we were able to drive up a ways.  Unfortunately, while snow levels alone would have allowed us to drive a good three miles up the road, there were downed trees all along the route and we only drove about a half mile up.

Turned into a road walk.  I did expect a bit of a road walk but expected it to be in snow and not simply on road.  Eventually we did get snow levels deep enough to put on our snow shoes around the three mile mark.  Snow was a bit wet, wet cement.  Not the worst I've encountered but we all got in a good workout trading off making steps.

There were periods of light sprinkles during the day but no heavy rain.  It was probably dry more often than sprinkling so much better than the continuous rain that could have been.  Some peek a boo views of Merchent peak but mostly cloudy.

Did not see wild life but several tracks in the snow.  Dog tracks and other tracks much bigger and rounder.  Deer track and larger hooves, maybe elk.

Reached the trail head for Barclay lake around 11:30.  Stopped there and had our lunch break.  While there we heard, but did not see, a sizeable avalanche on the upper slopes of Mount Baring.  That was our turn around point.  I will pretend I listed the trip as "Barclay Lake Trail Head" instead of "Barclay Lake".

Start time around nine in the morning and back to the car a little before two.  About five hours for close to eight and a third miles.