We have been exploring the forested lands off the Lac le Jeune Road for a few years. For snowshoeing, this road is the best access to get to the 3000 – 5000 foot elevation level. At the upper end of this area, the forest is thick and the access in winter is harder. Some of the best snowshoeing in our area can be found at the 4000 foot elevation, just off the Lac le Jeune Road. But parking and access is an issue since we still need to drive to the trailhead, so we have been exploring the forest looking for better access. At the lower end of the forested slopes is the Goose Lake Road, which will no longer be a through-road because of the Ajax Mine, but the upper end should still be accessible, next to Crown Lands for about 3 km on either side. On the north side of the road is one block of Crown Land that is sometimes frequented by bush partiers, target shooters, ATVers, and off-road motorcycles. This area just off the Goose Lake Road is a mess with scarred tracks and garbage, and because of this hikers will want to avoid the area. We chose to hike past the damaged area to explore the double tracks, single tracks, ponds, gullies, and hills all the way to the fenced boundaries of the forested area in a longer loop route.
The alkali ponds are shallow, but a few ducks dabbled on the surface.
Generally speaking, this area is not a good area for hiking, but it will make a good area for snowshoeing from December to the end of February. We were able to do a 6 km loop with some hills, single tracks, and double tracks. We spotted deer, saw some bear scats, scared up a grouse, watched ducks on the ponds, identified many wildflowers and birds, and investigated a number of hills. We will be back in mid-December to set some snowshoe tracks.
KGHM and Kinder Morgan have proposed to reroute the pipeline through this area, as shown in this map: