Sunday March 01 2020 GMC MONTPELIER SECTION 3/1/20 OUTING REPORT by Morgan IronsOne dog, one skier, and fourteen snowshoers trekked up Laraway Mountain from the Codding Hollow trailhead in Waterville on March 1st. The Long Trail North led us past thirty-foot ledges to the overlook of the Lamoille River Valley. Temperatures eventually climbed into the twenties, and though we had snow flurries (being too early for the promised sunshine), there was a limited view beneath the clouds.
The ledges were the high point of the outing. In winter they are draped with cascading sheets of ice which form rock and crystal caves to explore. Mother Nature’s artistry is on display in frozen rivers of amber, a towering crystal pillar, and a variety of intricate surface formations.
Powered by Alan’s famous oatmeal cookies, Nancy, Dana, and several others took turns at the head of the line, breaking trail through snow that became steadily deeper as we gained elevation. Everyone joined in the search for the white blazes hidden on snow-encrusted trees, (always a fun winter challenge), once fanning out in our search thanks to a misleading mark at a sharp turn. Participants’ ages spanned four decades, and we hailed from seven different Vermont towns, with one hiker from New York as well. For five of us this was our “third annual” GMC Laraway snowshoe outing, three others had been part of the 2018 group, and we were happy to welcome seven new participants this year. A great group of people, a beautiful trail, and favorable weather made for a very special outing.