Big South Trail Snowshoe/Ski
~4 miles roundtrip
After a trail run on Saturday, headed up with J, Caleb, and DJ for a snowshoe up in Cameron Pass. This was my first trip to CP this year, as I've been drooling over early season snow totals but unable to do anything about it.
On the way up, Caleb suggested the Big South trail, which is the closest trail that usually has semi-reliable snow. It's also one of the only trails I hadn't been on before, so it was an excellent suggestion.
Guidebooks talk about picking your way through rocks (depending on snow cover), and the trail being narrow in spots, but we found it to be excellent. It's not a smooth freeway like Zimmerman or Michigan Ditch, but has more of a topographical flavor of RMNP trails. No wonder: it follows a fork of the Poudre ultimately into and through the park. This makes for a great summertime option for a long loop into the park (although there is supposedly a washed-out bridge 7 or so miles in, so you may not make it through with all of your oxen intact).
The new snow from the recent storms coming out of California was more of a wet "Sierra cement" that stuck to my skis, but I would not hesitate to recommend this for skis as well. Only a couple of corners with downed logs and rocks were a little tricky, but most of it was fun rolling hills.
One spot with a big field of talus looked like it would be fun scrambling in the summer as well. Definitely an all-season trail to check out, and we didn't see any other folks on this trail on a weekend.