|The red marks the way I had used to travel in this area. The "boot prints" mark where we hiked Sunday.|
A couple of years ago Matt Marcinek suggested I try an official Forest Service trail, No. 277, that begins about a half mile north of Home Gulch right off the main Sun Canyon Road.
It shows on the map as a loop that arcs above Red Lake on its return.
Very good horse/elk trails continue on the ridgeline to the north end of the Sawtooth Ridge where we've discovered a very good climbing route.
This ridge is the boundary between the national forest and the state game range and is a great spot to see where the elk migrate between summer and winter range. Hunters have set up blinds in this area.
On Sunday my wife and I did the short hike above Red Lake just to check out this section of trail I had never taken and were very satisfied with the experience.
All the horse trails coming from every which-way makes consistent trail finding problematic.
The route we chose Sunday is very direct and solves some of that trail-finding.
The old route, marked in red on the map comes up from the lodge's main arch-way gate, an imposing structure of huge logs.
|Katie enjoys the scenery, especially the flowers|
What made our hike Sunday particularly enjoyable was the amazing array of early wildflowers, particularly the arrowleaf balsamroots, lupine and brightly purple pasque flowers.