Snowshoe Trek in Parfrey’s Glen
Between 8 and 10 inches of fresh snow fell in the Devil’s Lake region yesterday with a bit more falling higher up in the Baraboo Hills. Before the snow stopped falling we were strapping on our snowshoes and heading out into the area’s most popular natural area, Parfrey’s Glen. Amazingly the Devil’s Lake State Park plow truck was there when we arrived already clearing out the parking area. The glen had at least 10 inches of fresh power which made for a beautiful hike, but it also made some sections a bit treacherous.
When hiking into the glen, there are at least 2 stream crossings you need to make where there are no bridges in place and the second half of the trail is simply gone due to flood damage. Snowshoeing through fresh, deep snow can be challenging and in the glen, even a bit dangerous. Along the way you’ll walk a narrow path with a rock wall on one side, and steep 20 foot drop off on the other. Once you go beyond the existing pathway, you’ll have to navigate loose stone interspersed with flowing water and small pools, some are visible but most are covered in thin ice and snow. Near the top of the glen, hikers have to navigate their way through boulders the size of small cars where stone stairs of the historic path have mostly crumbled away. That said, if you can follow the trail that we stomped down yesterday and use a bit of caution, you’ll find your way in and back just fine. The view is certainly worth the physical workout!
For those of you who can’t make the hike, we’ve provided a gallery and a bit of video below. Oh, and by the way, if you’d like to give snowshoeing a try for the first time, join the Devil’s Lake State Park nature center this Saturday of a free “Try Snowshoeing” event. Snowshoes are provided at no cost!