The drive to the TH was uneventful. DIM was snow covered and sanded. It was a beautiful day with plenty of sun and high haze. Temperatures were in the high 30s.
Today was all about breaking trail. Early on the snow had a 1/2" or so of hard crust on top of 6" or so of relatively soft snow. We followed a couple from the Manor for the first 1/2 mile as they broke trail for us. However, they then turned around and we were on our own.
We went by the turn at Daley Campground so we had to backtrack a bit to pick up the old road; the turn is just before the Congestion sign. There was a brief time just before lunch as we were making our way uphill when the snow conditions were ideal; firm and just sinking in an inch or two.
We had lunch on the plateau and then headed over to pick up the road along the Daley Canal. By this time the snow had softened, making trail breaking even more fun as we sank in 4" to 6". We enjoyed this all the way to the Beaver Dam Creek siphon crossing at which point we picked up a broken trail for the rest of the way back. The Daley Canal feeds Howard Prairie and is the irrigation canal that you see as you drive along DIM. This water eventually makes it way down to the TID ditch in Ashland. Scroll to the bottom of this page for a TID map.