Mid-May 2020 Trail Report

Wildflowers are in bloom, and our local landscape is teeming with new growth. Heartleaf arnica, trillium, and serviceberry are just a few of the wildflowers that are in full bloom right now. Since Lion Mountain was logged 12 years ago, it has become a perfect place to search for these splashes of color. The Skyles Overlook is especially diverse with arrow-leaf balsam root, indian paintbrush, and bluebells present. Soon purple lupine flowers will be out too.
NOW is the perfect time to explore the Whitefish Trail. This week’s periodic rain has left the trail in perfect, tacky condition with only a few wet spots. The Haskill trail is now 100% snow-free, and with the first bear sighting on the Whitefish Trail this week, remember to be bear aware and carry bear spray while exploring local trails. More info HERE.
WT Coordinator Helen completed a few treadwork projects at Lion Mountain where the trail has become split-level over time. Since Lion Mountain opened 10 years ago, we estimate that section of trail has seen around 400,000 visits! That’s a lot of trail shoes, bike tires, and doggie paws impacting the tread. Maintenance is a critical part of our work, and it’s made possible by your support, donations, and volunteerism.
Smith Lake Downfall Update
Still wondering about the downfall at Smith Lake? Houston, we still have a problem. The situation is more complicated than just getting an army of volunteers and chainsaws together. Thanks to everyone who has offered to help! We are working with the DNRC on the best plan moving forward. Parts of the trail are completely destroyed from root ball upheaval and hundreds of large diameter trees need to be salvaged for lumber. The devastation from March’s windstorm is so extensive, the State must perform an environmental assessment to make sure it’s done right. Work can’t start until then, so long story short? We are working on a solution, but the 1.4 mile trail from Lower WF Lake Road to Smith Lake might not be open this season. Thanks for your patience as we deal with the unprecedented.
As you get out to explore the Whitefish Trail this spring, we’d love to see your photos and hear your trail reports!