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Trip Report    

Basic Snowshoe - High Lakes Loop (winter)

A beautiful day in the snow on Mt. Rainier with an amazing group.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • The trail from Narada Falls to Reflection Lakes is marked. But the High Lakes Loop is not.  We had a GAIA route to navigate by. There were no problems crossing the ridge.  We weren't sure we were heading down in the right place until we found where the summer trail crossed Sunbeam Creek. This first crossing was easy. We found the second crossing easily, but had doubts about the route up the other side. It was very steep and narrow. We couldn't find a better place to go up. Kudos to Vince for kick stomping the route up for the group. Snowhoes came off and some of us used spikes at this point. A few of us wished we had our ice axe to self belay. This is a Basic Snowshoe route, but this one part was quite challenging. Perhaps late in the season, a deep snow pack would make this  crossing easier.

The road was bare and dry. The  was plenty of snow starting at Narada Falls, but there had been rain, so it was pretty crunchy. We had good weather, on the warm side for a Mt. Rainier snowshoe trip. There are some nice views of Mt. Rainier on the way up and then views of the Tatoosh Range from the ridge. The lakes were fozen and snow covered, pretty to see. Especially the view of Lake Louise with the Tatoosh Range beyond. Terrific view of Mt. Rainier from Reflection Lake. Avalanche danger was low, so we returned via Inspiration Point and were facing that gorgeous view of Mt. Rainier as we headed back.

A great trip with a great group. This is  a Basic Snowshoe route. The one crossing was very challenging and I was amazed at well everyone did. 

People on snow soes walking toward a view of Mt. Rainier.