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| | |-+  December 9 2007 Surveyor Lake Nordic Pass loop
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Author Topic: December 9 2007 Surveyor Lake Nordic Pass loop  (Read 1844 times)
wolfs
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Posts: 634


December 9 2007 Surveyor Lake Nordic Pass loop
« on: 12/09/07, 06:49 PM »

Needed to keep the drive short today and pretty much knew nothing at Snoq Pass was going to be worth the turning, so went with a tour that would more involve just skimming along logging roads. Brought AT gear so could deal with challenging conditions, I'm not good enough on light nordic when it's like that.

Pulled into Silver Fir lot around 9:45, just as it started snowing (I managed to avoid any snow on the eastside, let just before it started). Everything frozen hard and lumpy. Skinned up the Outback run (some gullies still split run but easy to step over) and then veered climbers left, eventually climbing a powerline a ways and then a road. Managed to get my directions crossed and sailed clean past the road that connects Silver Fir and Hyak and just kept going, wrapping around a little knoll. This led me to discover Surveyor Lake quite by accident! It's just off that knoll, and is quite pretty with a winter coat. Gliding across the frozen surface with just a skiff of snow was also delightfully efficient.




Past this point I finally realized where I was when I popped out on top of the notorious 'power line' run (not skiable now in case that isn't obvious) and could hear the freeway in the fog below. Turned around, and getting from here to Grand Junction took some skiddy turns until I reached a road that led down, which was gated by an enormous yellow gate.  I had been on the wrong side of a no trespassing sign. Oops.

Most of the roads that are part of the Snoq XC system had been catted, which was good in the spots where they deigned to drop the groomer tail, not so good in the places where snow was shallow so they lifted the tail and just left the treads. Several places were melted down to rocks from the rain last monday but always possible to go on edges.

From there went past Rockdale Lake and up the Frog Lake loop and eventually the blue diamond trail to Nordic Pass. Some streams and flowing water, and crusty snow under trees, but travel not too bad. To add some spice I decided to make a loop via Ollalie meadow and the road that forms the Catherine loop. Getting down from Nordic to Ollalie surprisingly steep in spots. More lumpy hard frozen snow. Ollalie was a harder stream crossing, had to step in water in one spot.



On the way out of Ollalie made another navigational mistake. There's a road here as Ollalie spills towards I-90 and you cross stream on culvert that is a little higher. That's the wrong road ... It climbs a fair bit, then drops down a little, and deposits you on the edge of a nasty av slope under slabs on Radio peak. The correct road can be seen way down below, probably 750vf or more. Slopes were stable by virtue of being frozen so I skied the edge of the av path using ungainly survival techniques, intercepted the powerline and finally reached the correct road. Very much nonrecommended. I really should have just backed it up that wrong road and tried again it would have been faster. Then long skinning slog to get back to Silver Fir.

Run down Silver Fir was not a lot of fun. Still more frozen lumps. It had snowed much of the day but depositation was almost nothing, certainly not enough to salvage this surface.

Wasn't expecting good turns, and didn't get good turns. But certainly a good exercise tour and weather was decent, even teases of blue for a moment. Saw only one other group, 3 snowshoers at Grand Junction on the way in.
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Robie
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Posts: 1398


Re: December 9 2007 Surveyor Lake Nordic Pass loop
« Reply #1 on: 12/09/07, 07:06 PM »

This land is your land, this land is my land
From California, to the New York Island
From the redwood forest, to the gulf stream waters
This land was made for you and me

As I was walking a ribbon of highway
I saw above me an endless skyway
I saw below me a golden valley
This land was made for you and me

Chorus

I've roamed and rambled and I've followed my footsteps
To the sparkling sands of her diamond deserts
And all around me a voice was sounding
This land was made for you and me

Chorus

The sun comes shining as I was strolling
The wheat fields waving and the dust clouds rolling
The fog was lifting a voice come chanting
This land was made for you and me

Chorus

As I was walkin'  -  I saw a sign there
And that sign said - no tress passin'
But on the other side  .... it didn't say nothin!
Now that side was made for you and me!
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