Again we visited the Ahtanum area West of Yakima. This time there was a little more snow. We traveled the North Fork Road up past Snow Cabin. We were able to make it within 2 miles of Darland Mountain from the north on this road before the snow (and snowmobile tracks) halted progress.
We spent the first part of the day at Snow Cabin Campground (there was no cabin that I could see). This is a nice campground at about 4700′ elevation. It has about 6 camp sites with fire pits and picnic tables. There are 2 unisex latrines as well, but no running water. We setup for at one spot for lunch. I had forgotten to bring firewood, so we scavenged a few of the other fire pits for semi dry/charred wood to use. After an hour of trying to start a fire (while I was making lunch on the camp stove) we gave up. We ate lunch, then decided to head further up the road for deeper snow.
Once we were denied access to the top of Darland Mountain, we headed back down the road a little for a good sledding spot. We ended up finding one at an intersection with the 2300 road and spent an our sledding and having a snowball fight. There was about 18″ of snow here. We were just under 5700′. I could only trek to the top so many times before I was worn out.
It was getting later in the day and I didn’t want to be too far up a snow covered road once it got dark, so we headed down and around to Treephones. We started a nice fire in the wood stove again to warm up the cabin. We then had a good hide and seek snowball fight in the woods around the cabin. We stayed until dark, having a snack in the now toasty cabin before heading down.
It was another nice visit to the East Slope of the Central Cascades, one we will repeat several times throughout the winter.