If I were you, wait until March. You can go it alone, but you will have plenty if company.
Sign the register at the AMC store at Joe Dodge lodge. Then sign again at HoJo’s at Hermit Lake. Now people close by, know you are up there. They also have up to the minute weather reports and advice as to whether it’s safe to go. Bring a pair of walkie talkies and leave one at HoJo’s.
You will find skiers on Hillmans Highway, in the Bowl and up on the upper snowfields. Hillmans is a good way to ascend. From the top of the Bowl follow the rock piles past Lake in the Clouds.
For gear, dress in breathable layers. You’ll be pealing them off as you go and you don’t want any of them soaked in sweat. I’m not a big fan of a heavy coat. Polarfleece layers and Gortex outers are the way to go. Extra sox and T-shirt are a must. I strongly suggest a survival fanny pack; Solar blankets, trash bags, tin cup, long burning short candles, lighter, first aid, tea, hot chocolat, energy bars, LED flashlight and compass. Add to it, as you feel fit. Don’t forget water. As far as snow shoes, the small ones with ice cleats built in should do fine.
You can always stay at Joe Dodge if you miss transportation back. Dinner and breakfast are included. It’s a hike you’ll always feel proud of and the memory of the stark white vastness won’t go away. Excellent adventures don’t come any better. Hike safe
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