Apr 22, 2012 at 6:45 pm #1289046
I just got back from a 24 hour trip in the Lost Creek Wilderness.
Goose Creek TH > Hankins Pass > Lake Park > McCurdy Park > Refrigerator Gulch > Goose Creek TH
The loop was almost entirely snow free. I hit trail-obscuring snow (and lots of downed trees) at the high point of the loop (11,500 ft) between Lake Park and McCurdy Park. A map and common sense is enough to get through this less than 1 mile obstacle.Apr 24, 2012 at 9:31 am #1870607
Thanks Justin. Great to know. That's really early to do that loop. You must have have had the place practically all to yourself! At least a heck of a lot less people than a usual weekend.
How were the downed trees on the Hankins Pass section. Last year they were pretty bad. I even had one fall a short distance away when I was stopped to get water. It was pretty windy so I went as fast as I could through that part.Apr 30, 2012 at 1:16 pm #1872788
@djaaronreedLocale: Central Rockies
Good to know. Thanks for the report!
I am heading up there in a week and a half. Was originally just going to do Lake Park, but may try the whole loop. I would imagine the trail crews won't be there for clean up till July, if there are any even working this year. Looking forward to shaking the cobwebs out of the winter logged brain!Jun 3, 2012 at 8:03 am #1883501
I braved the loop the last weekend in March this year and although cold and very snowy in spots it was wonderful.
I took a group of youth out on a 4 day trip in May, no more snow but plenty of rain for the weekend. There was a sign at the Goose Creek trailhead stating Lake Park was not recommended due to dead fall.
This upcoming weekend I have another group of youth scheduled to go out and complete the short loop. We plan on going counter clockwise and taking Lake Park trail to Hankins Pass.Jun 7, 2012 at 8:28 am #1884871
Erik, please post what you find in Lake Park concerning the dead fall if you do go through there. I'm taking a friend there in 3 or 4 weeks. Thanks.Jun 7, 2012 at 5:20 pm #1885038
@dondoLocale: Colorado Rockies
Randy, I did the loop counterclockwise earlier this week taking the alternate Brookside-McCurdy route. At McCurdy Park, I ran into a group of six hikers who were doing the loop clockwise. They told me that they did make it through Lake Park but that there was a lot of scrambling over downed trees. They lost the trail but made it through to McCurdy Park by just following a bearing due west. Also, the water situation is not what it normally is this time of year. Some of the usual sources have dried up and others were just a trickle. The group told me that all Lake Park had was brackish pond water.Jun 7, 2012 at 7:40 pm #1885094
Hey Dondo. Thanks for the info! I've never even been to Lake Park when there has been water that I saw so was planning on carrying from the last source in Hankins pass to McCurdy park. We're going to attempt to do it as a day hike so wasted time route finding isn't an option in this case. I THINK of going round BM as a lot longer than going through Lake Park but haven't really looked at the map to see. Not sure if that might be too much to take on in a day. The original route would be hard enough for me.
How was water on BM? Still water at the spot about 2 miles north of the Hankins/BM junction? I'd hope so this early.
Saw you did the above treeline ridge route above Craig Park. I started out to do that a few weekends ago but had hurt my back the week before and had to bail after one night. I'm sticking to day hikes until my back gets significantly better. Sleeping on the ground always makes my back worse. (I really need to look into a hammock.) But I still hope to get that route in this year.Jun 8, 2012 at 8:22 pm #1885417
@dondoLocale: Colorado Rockies
Randy, some other hikers I met on the trail told me that the rangers said that the BM route was 1.5 miles longer than the Lake Park route.
The last time I saw water levels this low was ten years ago, the year of the Hayman fire. On the BM trail there was some water at the spot you mentioned and a another spot identified as Hay Creek on the map, just up from the intersection from the Lizard Rock trail. Both sources were low and required me to use a scoop to collect the water and fill my bottle. How it may be in three or four weeks is anyone's guess.
Sorry to hear about your back. I've been there and know that it's no picnic.
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