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Trip Report    

Basic Snowshoe - Reflection Lakes

Narada Falls to Reflection Lakes via Lower Lakes Trail with 3 to 5 feet of new snow involving lots of breaking trail.

  • Snow and ice on road
  • A major winter storm Monday and Tuesday left 3 to 5 feet of new snow at the 4,000 to 5,000 foot level on Mount Rainier which made for a day of serious breaking trail in loose, dry snow.

    We traveled from Narada Falls trailhead to Reflection Lakes via the Lower Lakes trail which is safe in avalanche conditions (Avalanche danger level was Considerable on Wednesday). The trail has been marked with poles and signs put in place for the season by the volunteer Ski Patrol. 

A major winter storm Monday and Tuesday left 3 to 5 feet of new snow at the 4,000 to 5,000 foot level on Mount Rainier which made for a day of serious breaking trail in loose, dry snow. The weather forecast for Wednesday called for sunshine in the afternoon, however the sun stayed in hiding  with intermittent light snowfall and temperatures in the mid 20F range.

We traveled from Narada Falls trailhead to Reflection Lakes via the Lower Lakes trail which is safe in avalanche conditions (Avalanche danger level was Considerable on Wednesday). The trail has been marked with poles and signs put in place for the season by the volunteer Ski Patrol. 

Due to the winter storm, the Longmire gate did not open until a little after 11:00 am Wednesday (and did not open at all on Tuesday). We reached our agreed upon turnaround time (2:00 pm) at  1/4 mile from the lake. Everyone did a great job helping to break trail (with additional teaming up with two other groups) so that all got a good pre-Christmas workout and were ready to head back after a short lunch break. As a bonus for snowshoers over the next several days, there is now a nice, packed trail to Reflection Lakes.

A good lesson from the day was that it would be helpful to carry some spare pole baskets as at least one basket escaped from its pole, making for interesting balance in the deep, unconsolidated, new snow.

All and all a good day in the mountains!

 

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