This was our first backpack into the Bitterroots and it was a good one. Although, it did not come easy. The plan was Blodgett Lake and back, with a detour up Blodgett Pass on the way out. We were successful in our plan, but making it to the lake proved very difficult. We had to go through a few major winter blow down areas and then complete a very long traverse across some very deep snow to reach the lake, as a winter avalanche had completely obliterated the last .5 miles of the trail to the lake.
The first 6-7 miles of Blodgett Canyon are spectacular. There are two really scenic waterfalls and the trail is in great condition. However, once you reach that wilderness boundary around the 8 mile mark, the trail becomes a little swampy and over grown at times. Then came the climb to Blodgett Lake that required a wet crossing due to a snow choked run-off creek and several fallen trees from a winter storm. The only positive part about the climb was the thundering several hundred feet waterfall that was tumbling down the north side of the canyon. Eventually, the trail to the lake completely disappeared in a very substantial avalanche area. From there we just started navigating around where the forested section of the trail was to a large snow field. We could not believe the amount of snow still hanging around at only 6500 feet. At one point, we actually started to wonder if the lake even existed. I had Carrie wait while I pushed ahead and tried to catch a glimpse of the lake. I finally did after about three-tenths of a mile! We had just traversed a little too high and far and were just out of view of the lake somehow. After getting back to Carrie, we completed a pretty standard contour over to the lake and out of the deep snow.
The lake was worth every trial and tribulation along the way. It was an absolutely stunning lake and we only had to share it with one other adventurous couple. In fact, we may have been the first four to camp on that lake this "spring." When we told a few locals we had made it to the lake the day after, they were very shocked and mentioned the snow being deep up there until late July some years. After some lake fun and a cozy fire, we were out.
The hike out was much easier going and flew by in comparison to the previous day, probably related to the fact that we were not hiking into the unknown and wondering every minute I if we were ever going to make it to our destination. Speaking of destinations, we did hit Blodgett Pass on the way out and it was pretty amazing. Well worth the climb, if in the area. The hike out got a little warm at times, but some nice clouds rolled in and made for some scenic views on our way out.