Wood Camp Hollow Ski/Snowshoe, 21 January, 2024

Wood Camp is usually one of our easier outings, but this time everyone was exhausted at the end.  Fortunately we had 14 good sports—Alex, Brent L, Ralph, Dave W, Jane, David, Kathy, Jesse, Lia, Brent J, Linda, Sayard, Teresa, and Dave P (leader).  Eight were on snowshoes, five on skis, and one on a split snowboard.  The mountains had more than a foot of snow earlier in the week.  This day the temperature was above freezing with occasional drizzle.

The first challenge was getting to the trailhead.  The side road to the trailhead (1/6 mile and a 70-foot ascent) was untracked - no vehicles had gone that way since the last snowfall. Our first driver bravely forged up the road in a 4WD pickup, gouging 6-inch deep ruts in the wet, heavy snow.  Traction was a bit iffy, but they made it all the way to the trailhead. It may have been wiser for the others to wait, but they all followed without delay, creating somewhat of a traffic jam at the end. The second challenge was parking. Every vehicle needed extra help turning and backing at the trailhead. Fortunately there were several small shovels and plenty of people to dig around tires and push, and before long all the vehicles were in position.  

The third challenge was breaking trail.  At first there were tracks of a skier and a few snowshoers and postholers, but these soon wandered off from the main trail.  For about half the route we broke trail through the heavy snow. Everyone was pretty tired by the time we got to the last bridge.  By then it was noon and two decided to have lunch there.  The rest continued up through the untracked wilderness.  We didn’t make it to our usual lunch spot at the switchback.  We found a sheltered lunch spot by a large boulder, and everyone was relaxing at lunch when a cold wind and rain started—the fourth challenge.  We packed up and headed back.  It was much easier going downhill on the packed trail, of course, and the skiers were mostly able to stay on top of the wet snow.  We enjoyed views of the mountains through the light mist and observed snowshoe hare tracks.

At the parking lot we strategized how to safely get back on the highway because the way out was through a narrow opening in the tall berm left by snowplows that obstructed the view of the highway.  The vehicles got in line and started to head down when one slipped sideways into deep snow—the fifth challenge.  But by now we were expert in digging and pushing and we safely got back on the highway and returned to Logan.  Overall the outing was a memorable and educational experience.

Trip Summary:
  • Drove 13 miles to the Wood Camp trailhead
  • Started on the trail about 11:10 (after a lot of digging and pushing at the parking area)
  • "Lunch" about 12:40 - 12:55, back at the trailhead about 1:45
  • Cloudy with periods of rain amd wind
  • Traveled about 3.1 miles with 600 feet of ascent

Thanks to Dave P. for the narrative and photos, Jane and Kathy for photos, and  Dave W. and Ralph for photos and GPS data

It took a bit of work to get everyting in order at the trailhead

Ready to head out

On the trail

Deep snow ahead encouraged us to move to the old route
A sign on the old trail, not far from the last bridge

The bridge was covered with about 2 feet of snow

The boulder near our lunch spot
Our tracks in the snow 

Snowshoers and a skier, on the trail

Our GPS track shows about 3.1 miles and 600 feet of ascent.
You can look at our route using Google Earth or download our GPS file.