Trip Report    

Day Hike - The Enchantments - in snow!

Thru hiked the Enchantments on the first nice day after a big snow storm earlier in the week

  • Fri, Sep 29, 2023
  • The Enchantments
  • Day Hiking
  • Successful
  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Aasgard pass is covered in snow, along with much of the descent to Lake Viviane. Plenty of water sources along the way. From Upper Snow Lake to Snow Lake trailhead, trail is dry like summer conditions, opposite of ascent. 

I booked a spot for the Loop Connector Shuttle 5am pickup at Snow Lake a week prior to this trip.
The shuttle dropped me and a large group off at the Stuart Lake trailhead at around 5:30am
Uneventful hike to the base of Aasgard pass. I have done this hike in August before and the conditions today were not much different for this section.
Aasgard pass is snowy on the top half. The snow was doing a good job at keeping the rocks from falling. There wasn't much rock fall danger today. 
Ascending Aasgard Pass, looking down at Colchuck Lake
The section above Aasgard pass (Isolation lake to Inspiration lake) was quite snowy and turned to icy as the trail got closer to hugging the lakes. I saw 2 trail runners who passed me in this section and the rest of the time I was alone. Clear skies and low wind made it feel surreal. 360 degrees of alpine views and not a peep from anything. 
On the way to Lake Viviane I slipped (but didn’t fully fall) probably 8-9 times, and actually fell onto my butt twice due to parts of the trail that are iced over. There are a few spots where I had to take it slow to avoid slipping but in general the boot back was very obvious and easy to follow.

Overlooking Leprechaun Lake

The last 1/3 descent down to snow lake trailhead is snow free. Feels like summer on that side of the trail.
Lovely fall colors
I wore trail runners. Did not wear crampons or spikes, but spikes could have been helpful. If anything my poles were really helpful for preventing my falls. I did posthole in a couple spots and got a shoeful of ice water.
Weather was perfect today. Blue skies, sunshine. It actually wasn’t very cold—I never broke out the goretex, just wore my sun shirt and puffy. No goat sightings though! Garmin watch logged 20.43mi and 4,923ft of gain. Finished at 4:30pm.