Mileage: 10.4 miles RT (we did not make the whole trip)
Elevation Gain/Highest: 3100/6200ft
Map: Green Trails Mount Shuksan No. 14
Favorite Eats After Hike: North Fork Brewery (beer shrine)
12/15/2015 We decided to head up to see how far we could get on the trail today. Avalanche conditions were at moderate, so we would go until it didn’t feel safe.
The road was snow covered by mile 3 and we parked our cars between mile 4 and 5 due to slides over the road. There were several downed trees that had been cleared to the side, but even without the slides there was not a lot of room. The outhouse at the TH was open but no TP. 🙂
We started out with spikes on from the car but the snow was deep enough in the first mile on the trail to switch to snowshoes. It was not heavily traveled so some spots were a bit narrow. The valley was amazingly white as we meandered on this relatively flat section. The clouds looked to lighten and we thought we saw a few specks of blue. This alternated with a few snow flurries as the weather couldn’t make up it’s mind what to do.
We started up the switchbacks towards the pass and got through a few before the first chute and then decided it was time to turn back (about 4 miles from the cars). After stopping to have lunch, we enjoyed the scenery once again on our return.
Directions:Head east on SR 542 about 46 miles to 13 miles past Glacier Public Service Center. Just before the third crossing of the Nooksack River Bridge, turn left on road No. 32. At 1.3 miles, take the left fork (Ruth Creek Road) and continue 5.4 miles to the end of the road at Hannegan Campground.