A little while ago, my friend Paula mentioned that it was the perfect time of year to go to Skoki Lodge. It doesn't take much arm twisting to get me to go on backcountry adventures, especially to this beautifully historic escape from the grid, so I said yes and next thing I knew, myself and three awesome friends were on our way in on Good Friday! I have been very fortunate and this trip marked my second trek in and it was just as amazing as the first time... with the added bonus of actual visibility on our hike out this time.
After checking in and making our way to the trail head we found that it looked like no one else had been on it yet. Combined with the snowfall warning we found ourselves in, we soon realized what we had in store for the rest of the day - white-out.
I aligned my thoughts with trekking the 11km to the lodge while being mesmerized by the ever falling snow and quickly found my mind was wandering. Luckily good times ensued with hilarious conversation and gawking at the bits of nature's beauty we could see. By the time we made it to Halfway Hut for lunch, I was ready for a break from the wet snowfall.
We made it to the Lodge without incident ourselves (which was not the case for a couple leaving the lodge... Non-skier learning to xc-ski on mountain passes made for a blown knee. Yikes!) and were welcomed with a smorgasbord of food made by the amazing lodge cook. Arrival tea really is a treat. As the Skoki Winter Information details mention, the mountain air sharpens the appetite and the three trips to the tea treat table sure was indicative of mine! Then just a few hours later we had dinner... another multi-course meal that blew our cozy lodge socks off.
With some nightcap wine and a bit of story sharing with the girls it was lights out for the Wolverine Cabin... and what we woke up to was nothing short of phenomenal. The weather cleared and we were in a postcard. Blue skies, snowcapped mountains surrounding us and the smell of bacon wafting through the air from the breakfast preparations in the main lodge. Could you ask for anything more?!? It was picturesque. It was beautiful. It was perfect.
With the two-stage breakfast in our bellies, we packed our lunches, took some final photos and it was time to hit the trail. Not long in to the trek we heard our first avalanche echo through the valley and it was loud. It wouldn't be until the trees thinned and we neared Deception pass that we would see the big slope release that looked like it was triggered by a chunk of overhanging cornice. Throughout the day we were witness to a few more avalanches and it weren't for the significant distance between the trail and the danger zones I would've been more concerned. Therefore, we were all in awe of nature sloughing off the snow around us.
With plenty of sunshine and a downward slope we made it back to the front side of Lake Louise Resort with plenty of time to enjoy a cold beer in celebration of a fantastic hike out.
Until next time Skoki...