Participants: Tom Statz, Peter Rice, David and Julie Kahl
My opting to meet a half hour earlier than I had in the past, paid off as there was still plenty of parking available in the Visitors’ Center parking lot. It was a perfect day for an easy ski. There was no new snow at Lolo Pass, but we opted to ski back to the Lee Cr. divide (3 miles/ 4.83k) and off the icier parts of the trails. Tom is a new comer to Lolo Pass and we did our best to introduce him to all its possibilities and Peter was trying some new, nifty back country gear. The trail was well packed and he did OK with his wider than touring skis. Low snow pack adds some challenges to the trail, with much of the brush and blow down not covered by snow yet, but nothing terrible. That must have been what the moose who left tracks all over the trail must have thought also. As we stopped for lunch at the saddle, the world was all sparkly and I realized it was a layer of hoar frost crystals that will stay in the snow pack now for the rest of the winter. Darn! We took party photos before turning back. We saw no other skiers back off the main trails, at the parking lot: lots of kids and Christmas trees.