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Intermediate Snowshoe - Pratt Vista

Very pleasant day with sunshine and fresh snow.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles

Originally scheduled for South Bessemer, we changed destination due to road and avalanche concerns. We ended up with excellent conditions and weather for a strong group of snowshoers. 8.5 miles, 2600’ elevation gain, 6.5 hours round trip.

Although there was fresh snow starting at the parking lot, it was only a few inches deep (over a consolidated base) for the first three miles so we did not use our snowshoes. But at around 3500' elevation, the soft snow got deeper so we put on the snowshoes.   Shortly after passing Olallie Lake, we left the trail and headed up.  Everyone took turns breaking trail in the deep, soft, snow and soon we reached the ridge and the promised Vista lunch spot.  The sun was shining on Kaleetan to the north.  To the east, we admired West Granite.  To the west, Pratt Mountain.

After lunch, we plotted a bearing to Olallie lake and descended through the trees.  The lake was only partially frozen so we followed the east shore south to the outlet. This was a very annoying part of the trip because we had to cross the 'canyons' of many small streams melted out by the recent warm rains. Once at the outlet, we navigated back to the trail and headed back to our cars.

 

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