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Mt. Rainier, WA – Summer Solstice 2015

Mt. Rainier, ...

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Mt. Daniel, WA – Finding the Goods

Mt. Daniel, W...

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Mt. Rainier N.P., WA – Ptarmigan Ridge R & R

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Cle Elum Valley, WA – Mt. Daniel Circumnavigation

Cle Elum Vall...

30
Jun

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It’s gonna be a tough year to link up the year round skiing here in the PNW, as we have said goodbye to the skiing on Snoqualmie Pass in late April. Our 2014 Solstice gathering happened at our Silver Peak stomping grounds with almost 40 other skiers, this year the choice was to head up on the North side of Rainier to get some skiing in on the Russell and Flett Glaciers. A handful of us would make the trek into the park via the Mowich Lake entrance, with the goal of an epic sunset and some smooth skiing. Well, the sunset didn’t disappoint (as usual) but the skiing wasn’t very good, except on the steep aspects. All in all it was another great trip with great friends (even if it took a bit to connect with everyone). This is an epic day hike, if you have never been, which I highly recommend. Head for Observation and/or Echo Rocks which is roughly a 13 mile round trip.

 

Below is a video of our little adventure this past June 21, 2015. photo credit above / Adam Roberts

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26
Jun

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I’ve fallen a little behind on my edits, letting them get stacked up since our mid-May trip to Mt. Daniels with Chris Olson, Jeff Rich, Tara and Carl Simpson. I got the call from the gang for a trip up to Mt. Daniel, which I couldn’t pass up, as this one is fairly close to home. To access Mt. Daniel, you head out on the Cle Elum Valley Road via the sweet, little city of Roslyn, WA (which is also known as the set of the long running tv series “Northern Exposure“. We all headed out the evening of May 19th for a little car camping fun, and to get an early start on the Cathedral Pass trail, which would lead us to “skinable” snow apx 5 miles into the hike. We did have to carry the skis over Cathedral Pass, and were back on the snow just before Peggy’s Pond. We all were quite surprised to see how much snow was in this zone as our own “stomping grounds” were almost totally snow free. It was a big day that finished off with a little pond skimming over a hella deep pond that was sitting on the toe of the Hyas Glacier. Good times, as always with this fun loving mountain crew!

Below is a look at the BIG day on Mt. Daniel….

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18
Jun

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This is a look at last year’s trip up to the Russell Glacier, where Adam Roberts and I had a different goal rather that all of the R & R that took place. This is an epic zone, for amazing views. If you aren’t a year round skiier, I still highly recommend doing this hike from Mowich Lake campground to Spray Park (and beyond), you won’t be disappointed! I originally pulled this video down because of a typo, and never got around to the re-edit, so see if you can find the mistake ;-) Live to Ski Another Day, and bring on the Summer Solstice!

 


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12
Jun

Pretty wild clip of a snowshoe hare trying his luck crossing (what looks to be) a late season wet slide. The kid who filmed this shot, mentioned the rabbit did make it out OK. Mad skillz!

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06
Jun

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I really like this video Jason Hummel (of Alpine State of Mind ) put together of a recent trip into the Cle Elum Valley, to circumnavigate Mt. Daniel. Jeff Rich was the other modern day cowboy that would make the journey this past Saturday and Sunday (5/30 & 5/31/2015). The video is epic and you know the trip must have been amazing, I am stoked Jason took the time to put the vid together… So cool to see his stunning photography” come to life! Below are a few words from Jason in regards to the trip, along with his vid.

 

A two day trip skiing around Mt. Daniel. Approx 11-12k vert gain and 22-25 miles. Skied to Peggy’s Pond, Circle Lake, Venus Lake, to the summit of Hinman, to Foss Lakes, Peak Soup Lake, up the Lynch Glacier, then down the Hyas Glacier, back to Peggy’s Pond.

 

photo and video credits / Jason Hummel (check out more of his amazing work @ Alpine State of Mind and be sure to follow him on facebook )

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02
Jun

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Young, Alex Ropka just sent this sweet, short recap of he and his father’s (Ben Ropka) recent ski trips. Their, May 2015, adventures led them to both, Mt. Rainier National Park, and one of my favs, Ptarmigan Ridge, which is located in the Mt. Baker ski area bc (between Table Mtn. and Mt. Baker).


photo (looking towards Ptarmagin Ridge and Mt. Baker) and video credit / Alex Ropka

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01
Jun

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Cooler and wetter weather is upon us this week in Western Washington. The snow level is dropping to 6000′ – just in time for what’s currently forecast to be a sunny Friday, June 5th, 8am opening of the road to Sunrise Visitor Center). At 6400′, that’s the highest road in Mt. Rainier National Park. About a week ago, the Snow Troopers visited the Sunrise area. Below is the video and this week’s Mt. Rainier snow forecast: a possible “up to” 10 inches(!) of new snow at around 9400′ which is close to the elevations of Anvil Rock on the Muir Snowfield and Camp Schurman. The forecast is pretty similar for the Mt. Baker area. We hope this National Weather Service forecast pans out. Note that while the road to Sunrise opens this Friday (which is weeks earlier than the past few years’ late-June, early July openings), the Sunrise Visitor Center won’t be open until June 27th.


-This Afternoon -Snow showers. Chance of precipitation is 90%. Total daytime snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible.

-Tonight -Snow showers. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of around an inch possible.

-Tuesday -Snow showers. High near 32. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches possible.

-Tuesday Night -Snow showers. Low around 24. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible.

-Wednesday -Snow showers likely. Cloudy, with a high near 32. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches -possible.

-Wednesday Night -A 30 percent chance of snow showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 26. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.

-Thursday -A 30 percent chance of snow showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 35. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.

-Thursday Night -A chance of snow showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 30.

-Friday -Mostly sunny, with a high near 42.


photo & video credit / Carl Simpson

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31
May

Outside Magazine’s fifth annual Best Town Ever contest is down to its final round: It’s Port Angeles, WA (which beat out Bar Harbor, ME) vs. Chattanooga, TN (which defeated Eau Claire, WI). Our vote goes to Port Angeles known for being both a gateway to Olympic National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and Victoria, B.C., Canada. It’s surrounded by the natural beauty of the Olympic mountain range, the Pacific Ocean and just South of the San Juan Islands National Monument and most importantly for us Snow Troopers, it’s got skiing! Yes, not just the Hurricane Ridge ski area in ONP but amazingly easy access for backcountry car laps – the snow’s gone now but we enjoyed it in past years and covered it in this post and the video below. Get in your vote by Thursday, June 4, at 11:59 p.m. EDT.



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29
May

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Excited to watch history in the making up on Snoqualime Pass, WA. I don’t mean the record breaking BAD snow year we and others have received this past year in the PNW, but the (almost completed ) Washington State Ski & Snowboard Museum. Some of you know how much ski history has been made in Washington state by so many over the years, and now there will soon be a great place to stop and stretch the legs on that next road trip East or West of the I-90 Cascade Crest. Below are a few words from the WSSSM website along with a tour of the almost completed museum. BTW, I was given the tour by co-founding director Dave Moffett (who happens to be the son of Webb Moffett, a great man who helped move the ski industry, by leaps and bounds, to where it is today).


The Washington State Ski and Snowboard Museum (WSSSM) has been formed and has received IRS approval as a 501(c) 3 non-profit. The Ancient Skiers and the NW Ski Museum & Hall of Fame have both been very supportive of WSSSM and its location on Snoqualmie Pass.

WSSSM will be a “story-telling” museum together with artifact displays to supplement these stories. With advances in electronic technology this is the current trend among museums in Washington and around the country (e.g. Seattle’s MOHAI, EMP and Gates Visitor Center). Attached to this summary is a description of proposed exhibits, with associated videos, artifacts and photographs. Note that a fully secure display will include one of Phil Mahre’s World Cup trophies (on loan), Debbie Armstrong’s Olympic gold medal (on loan), various current items from 2010 and 2014 Olympian, Patrick Deneen, and more! Many artifacts relating to the history of snow sports in Washington State will be on display. Two highly regarded museum vendors have been retained to assist WSSSM: EDX (design) and Turner Exhibits (fabricator). These two exhibit specialists have completed some very high profile projects. Final design for WSSSM is complete and fabrication now underway.

Our Steering Committee is working diligently to provide input to EDX/Turner, procure artifacts, prepare PowerPoint presentations and produce content videos for Museum monitor viewing.


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25
May

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So thankful for all of the brave men and women that have made the ultimate sacrifice, to give us all the freedom to do the things we love. Whatever that may be, writing a post for a ski video site at 4:30AM, or rising to re-stoke the campfire/watch the sunrise on a relaxing weekend with the family, maybe you choose to go get a little work done at the office. Point is, our freedom wasn’t free, so as you roll thru today doing what you please, be sure to remember those who also loved their freedom. God Bless America!


Kick off your Memorial day with a short video of two of my favorite people, Tara and Carl Simpson, as the free(dom) ski in one of the most amazing National Parks we have. RAINIER National Park!


Photo and video credit / Carl Simpson

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