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Snow Shoe Hike: Granite Lakes (long hike)

If you're looking for an avalanche-free snowshoe to mountain lakes with moderate elevation gain,Granite Lakes is the place to go. It's close to Seattle just a few miles outside of North Bend up the Middle Fork. It's a long hike though and you will have to carry your snow shoes on your backpack for the first mile or two since we start at low elevation. I use bungie cords to hold my snowshoes onto my pack.

Distance: 11 miles roundtrip

Elevation: Upper GraniteLake - 3000 feet

Maps: Green Trails Bandera No. 206

In the summer, the views are marred somewhat by the presence of recovering clearcuts. But in the winter, this just doesn't matter. The trail offers gradual elevation gain and on clear days views open up to Mt. Bessemer and others. If we make it to the lakes, we will be rewarded with views of nearby Mailbox Peak, Webb Mountain, and Mt. Defiance.

From the Meetup point at Sno Valley Coffee, we will carpool and caravan to the trailhead which is about a quarter mile up from the Mailbox Peak parking lot, or 15 minutes from Sno Valley Coffee. A Discover Pass is required at the trailhead.

Bring warm cloths, snow shoes, sun glasses, and your camera and sun screen. Snow reflect a lot of light.

If it's a stormy day, this hike will be shortened.

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  • A former member
    A former member

    Are there enough folks on the waitlist to form a second meetup? my snow shoe back up plan just got cancelled, too....

    February 21, 2014

    • A former member
      A former member

      Have not checked the messages since posting the suggestion for a second meetup - sounds like one has gotten legs, great! I made other plans... Happy trails!

      February 21, 2014

    • Allan C

      Well, just to let you all know, Angela, Pat, myself, and two others had a great time at Commonwealth Basin yesterday; we following the trail part of the time and cut new trail part of the time; we're the overflow crowd, but we had a great time too! I didn't take that many pics; did anybody take some to post to share with our Meetup brethren?

      1 · February 23, 2014

  • Mike

    Awesome day. Brent, here's to a quick recovery.

    February 23, 2014

  • Jae

    Great hike with great group of people. Thanks Brent for organizing and hope smooth going and fast recovery

    February 22, 2014

  • Connie

    10 more minutes!!! Not gonna fall for that next time. :-) Brent - good luck on Monday and will see you on the trail in six weeks.

    February 22, 2014

  • Linda

    Great

    February 22, 2014

  • Joe M.

    It was a great day! Thanks for organizing it Brent.

    February 22, 2014

  • Hardik

    Great snowshoeing under falling snow. Thanks Brent for organizing and allowing me in this great snowshoeing activity with cool folks. It was very good to see you all.

    February 22, 2014

  • Charles

    Brent -- Sorry I missed you guys. I was about 10 minutes late to the coffee shop and didn't have a # to contact any you. Also Joe, thank for bringing the spare snowshoes for me. Sorry you had to bring them for nothing.

    Hope you all had a great trip.

    February 22, 2014

  • Linda

    Any last minute cancellations?

    February 22, 2014

  • J.C

    What time do you predict to be back by?

    February 21, 2014

  • Brent D.

    I would like to ask the group to stay together tomorrow as a group throughout this hike. With a high avalanche danger, we need to work as a team. Although this route is safe from major avalanche, heavy snow and ice falling from trees is still a danger. Also, we will be crossing streams that cut deep canyons across our trail. We will need to work as a team and help each other. Please don't go ahead of the group tomorrow.

    1 · February 21, 2014

  • Hardik

    Hi Brent, can I join you please? One of my already committed meetup got cancelled.

    February 21, 2014

    • Jae

      Hey.. Want a carpool?

      1 · February 21, 2014

    • Hardik

      Hi Jae Kim, I got it from downtown. Thank you so very much for your offer. See you tomorrow.

      February 21, 2014

  • Pat V.

    With so many waitlisted, how about splitting into two groups?

    February 21, 2014

  • Gayle M

    I know that this hike has some terrain issues when it comes to snow. Is the long version a route that bypass's that?? If so, can you let me know as I'd like to do this soon. Thanks! ❇

    February 20, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Hmm new to the area, and have never snowshoe'd... Do u know if u can rent them anywhere?

    February 18, 2014

    • Joe M.

      Theresa I have extra snowshoes and poles. Let me know if you want to borrow them and I'll bring them.

      February 19, 2014

    • A former member
      A former member

      I think I'm going to pass on this trip. I haven't gone before and I think 11 miles may be a little much lol

      February 19, 2014

  • Jeff

    I'm off the waiting list, as I'm going snowshoeing/snowcamping at Mount Saint Helens instead.

    1 · February 19, 2014

  • Kari

    I will be going up there that day also - just a little later. Guess there will likely be a major parking issue since there aren't many spots there :D.

    February 18, 2014

    • Brent D.

      Great. I will be on the Kari look-out during the hike.

      February 19, 2014

    • Allan C

      Hi Brent; any idea how likely it will be for me to make the hike? Should I sign up redundantly on another outing? Do you have a strict group size in mind? Also, I am planning to bring a guest, if that's OK; also an experienced snow-shoer. Thanks!

      February 19, 2014

  • Connie

    Can I join you, Brent? I'm good at breaking trail! :-)

    February 18, 2014

  • Barry C.

    Might like to go with my short, wide XC skis with skins. (hok skis) Does that sound possible with this group?

    1 · February 18, 2014

  • Wolfgang G.

    Brent, how do you feel about someone not quite making it all the way and waiting for the group on the way back? Really not sure if I can pump out 11 miles in snow shoes ( less then 11 but you get the idea) Would be fun to hike with you all vs just camp. :)

    February 17, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Great!

    1 · February 17, 2014

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