The Crosstown Trail is the longest and most accessible trail in the Government Camp network. This is a great choice for anyone looking for an easy but beautiful ski or snowshoe, since the routes throughout this trail are fully customizable. Crosstown has a very different feeling from either the Enid Lake Loop or the Glacier View Loop; it is a more evenly cut trail with a wider berth through the trees, fewer sharp turns, and the only significant incline or decline is where the trail meets the ski area at Summit Sno-Park. The basic run from Glacier View Sno-Park to Summit Sno-Park is approximately 3 miles one way. Moving east, the terrain gradually gains in altitude as it rises above Government Camp and approaches the Summit area. Moving west from Summit Sno-Park to Glacier Sno-Park is more of a gentle downhill ski or snowshoe, so if you decide to complete the full there-and-back route starting at Glacier Sno-Park, you will find the return a little faster.
Perhaps the greatest logistical asset of this trail is the flexibility it offers depending on your energy, skill or appetite. Several junctions with connecting trails give you plenty of options, though some connectors are for more intermediate skiers. For instance, Wally’s Tie is a short connector that joins Skiway, which takes you to the Thunderhead Lodge in less than a mile. Likewise, the Glade Trail can take you uphill to Timberline Lodge in 2.5 miles. If you choose to set a shuttle in the Thunderhead area, you can cut the trail distance in half. In all, there are plenty of opportunities to break up your trek with lodge rests, or to link several segments together for a longer adventure.
Winter backcountry adventures can be dangerous outdoor activities that pose significant risks as conditions affecting safety (i.e. weather, snowpack stability, avalanche hazard) are constantly changing. Prior to engaging in these activities each individual should get the proper training to make safe decisions and be equipped to use avalanche safety resources and tools. Please visit our Backcountry Skiing and Avalanche Safety post to learn more.