by Tom Janisch
“Big Snow is well named, for its expansive, rounded summit area and gentle northern slopes keep a white cover much of the summer…It is an excellent ski tour from Lake Dorothy. The summit view is truly remarkable, showing to great advantage most of the widely scattered summits in the North-Central Cascades.” So Fred Beckey reported in the Cascade Alpine Guide.
In the later part of May, 2017 Coron Polley, Joss Paddock, and I went to ski. We drove to the Lake Dorothy Trailhead via the Miller River Road from Skykomish. There is a very good and well maintained trail to Lake Dorothy which on this day was mostly snow free. The Lake was almost melted out to ski so we walked around the Lake, snow covered in places to the south eastern end. Shortly we could don skis. We skied part of the Alpine Lakes High Route to Gold Lake and then up the northeast shoulder of Big Snow. We savored the views. After about 8 hours of upward motion we enjoyed the summit. Delightful ski terrain and conditions brought us back on snow almost to Lake Dorothy.