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Old 09-25-2018, 03:45 PM   #1
Eddie Fournier
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: Montreal
Posts: 15
A classic revisited: Avalanche Pass 9/22

I had not been in the area since 2002. I did however remember its beauty and had been wanting to go back for quite a while.

We got the Loj at 7:50 on a Saturday morning. Parking lot was full (but not by much), but there was plenty of parking still available on South Meadows lane where there is another trailhead - be warned that this adds 0.7 mile each way.

Walk to Marcy dam is quite enjoyable, no rocks, litterally a walk in the park. Boy has this area changed since Hurricane Irene! You can still walk on the remaining part of the dam but I understand they are in the process of tearing it down.


The trip from Marcy dam to Avalanche Pass involves some moderate elevation, but nothing I would call strenuous. However, it was quite muddy and I'll be looking to purchase some gaiters. Entering the Pass feels like entering another world - so calm, green and mushy, glistening rock face, everything beams with zenitude. And then, bam!, a fantastic unobstructed view of the Avalanche lake jumps to your face.

This is where the fun begins and where I regretted leaving my poles in the car. Since the lake occupies the entire valley floor, the trail is a jumble of boulders, ladders and bridges, so progress is slow. There are a few interesting-looking caves. And of course, you've seen the hitch-up mathildas.


There are two places in this obstacle course where you have no other option than to put a foot in 2in of water - which is fine if you're wearing boots. There seemed to be some trail maintenance under way so I assume the crews will get to that. Took us maybe an hour to get from the North to the South side of the Lake for another fantastic view. There is what I assume is a beaver dam that allows you to take pictures at water level. If you look to the cliffs of Avalanche Mountain (to the West), you might see some brave rock climbers.


We wanted to get to Lake Colden, got a glimpse but did not make it because of time. Portion between both lakes was very muddy and unremarkable.

All in all, a great trip, although it was more milleage (13.6mi according to my hiking app) than my spouse cared for.

p.s. does full parking = overcrowding? certainly not on this hike, the only time we had to wait briefly was when some kids had to go through the portion mentioned above

Last edited by Eddie Fournier; 09-25-2018 at 04:35 PM..
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