Hoodoo Butte

January 3, 1987

The original trip to Salt Creek became the Hoodoo area because of “iffy” snow conditions. With partly sunny skies we started on the North Loop Trail. We had 2 ft. of snow, a freshly broken trail; the skiing was great. First into North Blowout Shelter for lunch. We picked up the Circle Lake Trail with the thought of making a loop via the South Loop back to Ray Benson. We passed skiers who had stopped just short of Circle Lake. We would have about 1½ miles of trail breaking to the next junction. As we trudge along we can hear snowmobilers in the distance. At the same time the sun goes, the wind picks up and the snow starts coming down? At Island Lake Trail junction there were no signs of other skiers or snowmobilers. Fire Loop Road (a snowmobile trail) is the quickest way back; we trudge up a short hill and are elated to find snowmobile tracks heading the way we want to go. The weather is getting worse all the time. We had one brief disappointment: our snowmobilers had a change of mind and circle back on themselves. We were fortunate. We are joined by two skiers who followed the same tracks off the main road about 150 yards from us. It was 2½ miles of blowing snow and low visibility back to the cars. Some people wished they had brought their goggles they left behind. The leader wished she had picked a more difficult trip — it would have been easier? — or stayed in snowless California. We were all reminded that a quick change in the weather can change “easy and fun” into “difficult and no fun.” XC skiers were Doris Allen, Royal Murdock, Gene Thaxton, Jane Tucker, Joe Turner and Jane Hackett (leader).

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