All Posts by backcountry skiing Keyword

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+2 4 votes

The Paleozoics and Cenozoic of Silver Star

We’re mainly a gray brigade of ski tourers who have assembled to ski Silver Star Mountain. To prove we’re inclusive, however, we invite Cyrus Desmarais, age 24, to join us. By the end of the day Cy is seriously questioning whether he should ever ski with such paleozoics again.

+3 3 votes

Foothills Man

I first met him on the north-facing slopes above Number Two Canyon Road. I was snowshoeing uphill through week-old snow—plodding. He was weaving parallel turns around sagebrush—gliding. When he saw me he stopped suddenly and watched. He seemed to be deciding how to how to confront this queer animal contaminating his ski run ...
+13 13 votes

Rock Mountain Ski Tour

This route is a non-nonsense ascent and descent of one of the higher peaks flanking Highway 2. From highway you immediately get down to business and climb over 4,200 vertical feet to the summit. Along with the big climb come big views and the big drop back down. 

+6 6 votes

NSAW & Avalanches - 2015 Update

Over 600 backcountry skiers and snowboarders recently attended the 9th Annual Northwest Snow and Avalanche Workshop in Seattle. A few dozen of us from the Wenatchee Valley attended and one presentation discussing risk analysis and decision making in avalanche terrain was particularly valuable and deserves wide use.

+5 5 votes

The Plum Line of Snowgrass

A week ago during a daylong dash up Snowgrass Mountain, we had touched the summit and beat-feet out of there to beat nightfall. When we spied that 3,000-vertical-foot plum dropping from the summit into the South Fork of Chiwaukum Creek we were full of regret. Why, oh why, hadn’t we brought the camping gear so we could ski that beauty?
+7 7 votes

Snowgrass Equinox Tour

Tom Janisch is fishing for a partner to complete the Equinox Ski Tour, a fancy way of saying he's looking for an excuse to skip work. The objective: Snowgrass Mountain, a peak whose very name connotes winter's end and spring's beginning. It's a tour that, indeed, proves to be a healthy and mix of both winter and spring.

+4 4 votes


Even during difficult seasons -- or difficult weekends -- there are usually ways to engage in those outdoor activities fuel your passion. The solutions is often a case of thinking outside of the box... of being flexible. This story may focus on skiing, but the lesson is transferable.

+5 5 votes

Jim Hill and Arrowhead Mountain

These two peaks near Stevens Pass can be skied or snowshoed from the same entry point. Jim Hill has a fabulous north-facing bowl to ski and Arrowhead Mountain has fabulous old-growth glades and hemlock forests to explore. Furthermore, you can sometimes find powder here in May!
+15 15 votes

A Tale of Two Fathers Day

Glen Carlson writes philosophically and poetically about chance encounters ... and about crazed fathers from Wenatchee celebrating Father's Day with daughters in much the same way ... by fleeing Dodge and getting outdoors.

+13 13 votes

Reynolds-Rennie Loop: The Wallowas of Chelan County

The Wallowa Mountains tower over the plains of northeastern Oregon. I cut my teeth there as a backcountry skier so they are near and dear to me. When it comes to skiing beautiful Wallowaesque terrain, however, the mountains of the Chelan Sawtooth Wilderness are less visited and a whole lot closer...