Gold Lake & Bog

January 9, 2000

Three vehicles with 10 skiers left the SEHS parking lot at 8:00 a.m. in heavy rain. By the time we reached the Gold Lake SnoPark at around 10:00 this had changed to heavy snow. Our group was the first to arrive at the SnoPark that day and so we became the first on the trail to the lake. All of the skiers were strong and the two miles of road to the lake and shelter were covered in far less time than an hour. After a rest at the shelter we crossed the bridge and continued around the far side of the lake to the bog. While crossing the bridge Bob spotted a Dipper bird doing its dance on the ice just below us. We watched as the bird bobbed up and down and then would jump into the water and disappear only to reappear out of the water and start his dance again. I told the group that I had seen the bird here in both summer and winter, so it is a year-round resident. Back on the trail again we covered the distance to the bog in no time. Since the group was skiing so strongly I suggested that we ski across the bog and down the opposite (east) side of the lake back to the shelter and road. I had not yet been to that side of the lake in winter but by using a map and compass we would have no problem finding our way. The group wanted to give it a try. Crossing the bog was no problem once Joshua found a large fallen log across the main stream, but when we got to the steep terrain on the lake’s east side the going got slow. Several in the group were getting tired of falling and worried that we would not get out by dark. I encouraged them along and at about 4:00 p.m., we were all safely back at the SnoPark. Despite the long day, all the group members with whom I talked at length of the trip seemed to enjoy and learn from the challenge that it presented to them. Skiers were: Obsidians Mary Holbert, Bob Burnett, Joshua Ladau and George Baitinger (leader) and non-members Jan True, Chris Stockdale, Larry Myers, Cheryl Flavth, Lou Bowets and Nancy Hanington.

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