Dave's Report - July 06, 2006
The Baldy Loop Hike
Mt Baldy Loop.
We�ve talked about doing this walk for a couple of years, and on the Canada Day long weekend, finally got around to it. The walk starts from the new car park in front of Island Lake�s Tamarack Lodge. We set off at 10.30 am on what was shaping up to be a very warm day.
The trail winds quite steadily up from the car park ,with views of the 3 Bears and Island Lake Cat skiing terrain making us wish we could come up and live here in winter ! Our group was led by Nuuksy � faithful Malamut � who really was an asset to his owner with the leash. He literally got pulled up the hill, making his effort much easier than those of us who followed.
The trail to the summit has several switchbacks, and when you finally reach what you think is the top, with a fine park bench from which to take in the view, you haven�t. The summit is actually about another 15 mins further up. The higher we hiked , the hotter it got. Sunscreen and plenty of water, a necessity. On reaching the top , there are superb views northwards towards the 3 Sisters, and you are able to see a great deal of the Lake to Lake trail area , the last part of which, has been greatly improved. From the ridge above the Lodge, a new trail has been created, so that instead of a long , winding and horrible final slog down the gravel road to civilization, you now have a more direct route to the food, wine, beer, hottubs etc which you would cheerfully kill for, by the time you have reached that ridge.
From the summit the trip around the other side of the loop winds back along a cat track, and then into the forest, and joins onto the Lake trail. If you plan it well, on a Sunday , you get to the Lodge in time to enjoy a very fine brunch. The walk is well marked, and you should allow 3 � 4 hours to do it comfortably. If the owners of Island Lake would like to adopt any of us, we are really nice, easy going people.