stevens pass

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+29 33 votes

Avalanche Deaths

Ski-related avalanche deaths are always troubling to skiers but they are far worse when the victims are part of your community, as was the case with the recent slide that killed three Leavenworth locals. This post tries to give perspective on the many troubling questions that arise when tragedy takes a friend or a loved one.

+11 11 votes

Lanham Lake Explorations

Many winter travelers use the 1.75-mile trail between the Stevens Pass Nordic Center and Lanham Lake. It's a pretty outing by itself. Lanham Lake is also a good springboard for exploring domains few visit. This is a story of such exploration -- with its corresponding highs and lows.


+6 10 votes

Mt. Mastiff via Merritt Lake

This ski or snowshoe ascent of Mount Mastiff  (el: 6,741’) climbs through old-growth forests that are an interesting mix of Eastside and Westside trees. Eventually you cut tracks along northeast ridge with wide open avalanches to your left and a precipitous freefall down into the Little Wenatchee River valley to your right.

+6 6 votes

Merritt Lake and Peak 6,125'

A good early-season trip that climbs quickly  and efficiently to snow level. The terrain up top is mellow in pitch and the forest is fairly open, making this a nice tour for less-experienced skiers in early winter when the boards might need to be carried up the lower, steeper slopes. When the lower, steeper slopes are snow-covered, intermediate skills are required.

+13 13 votes

Rock Mtn to Mastiff Mtn Traverse

Adam Vognild, Tom Janisch, and Andy Dappen discover a gratifications of ski touring in the Cascades: The chance to ski everything from blower powder to body-slamming death cookies ... all on the same day. Traversing from Rock Mtn to Mt Mastiff the three enjoy the entertainment and the humility of skiing a hundred snow types.

+12148 12148 votes

Jove Peak - The Imagination Tour

Demented minds think alike. Given the terrible backcountry snows of early December two skiers go through the same thought processes to divine where the skiing will be purrrfect. And, by Jove, they come up with the same south-facing solution.
+8 8 votes

Backcountry Skiing -- Where to Go?

For backcountry skiers, much about a safe and enjoyable day of touring is wrapped up in the decision of where you ski. Before you even leave home, use these resources to find the best tour for the given weather, avalanche conditions, and snow cover.
+14 14 votes

The Dementia Tour: Stevens Pass to Smith Brook Rd

Skiing isn't just about living, it could be about dying, too. How a backcountry ski tour between Stevens Pass and the Smith Brook Road offers a solution to conundrums surrounding euthanasia, dying-with-dignity, dementia, natural-burial and more. 
+17 19 votes

Hansel Creek - A Tale of Two Passes

We descend powder, corn, glades and roads. What took six hours to climb takes 70 minutes to ski. We arrive at the car scratching our did we coax such a miraculous ski run from such marginal conditions? Part of the answer lies in dumb luck; part in the tale of two passes.
+7 7 votes

The Stooges of McCausland

This tale is true. The names have been changed to protect the inept. While skiing Union Peak, the Three Stooges bumble and blunder their way to an unlikely success. Read what is wrought by Fate, misadventures, and the synergy of stupidity.