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Crystal Mtn., WA – A “RICH” Day the Cascade Way

Crystal Mtn.,...

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Cayuse Pass, WA -SNOW(!) forecast delays opening

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Snoqualmie Pass, WA – Know Snow Wonderland

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Mt. Shuksan – White Salmon Glacier

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26
Mar

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This past week was the birthday of a super cool, all around solid guy, that happens to slay big mountains for lunch, and huge traverses for dinner. That guy is Jeff Rich, a Stevens Pass loc, that I’m so happy to call a good friend! This past Tuesday (3/24/15) Jeff headed down to Crystal, where he connected with Tara & Carl Simpson, along with a grip of others, including local Alpentalic, Greg Ireton. We had tossed around leaving the pass, to connect with everyone, but with the low snow level we stayed home to ski Snoqualmie Pass, but Carl’s vid makes me wish I’d taken the 5hr (RT) drive. Happy Birthday Jeff!!

 

Below is s short recap of their epic “closed” day at Crystal Mountain Resort (crystal is NOW open thru Sunday).


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23
Mar

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Here’s a little peek of some great skiing, below a BIG peak. With the recent snowfall in the Cascades the conditions seen in Carl Simpson’s video below have change from great skiing to EXCELLENT skiing.

 

Mt. St Helens as seen from Mt. Rainier 3/16/15. photo & video credit / Carl Simpson

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22
Mar

Due to the snow forecast, WSDOT has pushed the opening of Cayuse Pass out to Friday, April 3, 2015 (instead of the previously reported March 27th). Chinook Pass remains on track to open on Friday, April 3rd as well. Wet weather has returned to the Pacific NW and the snow level is forecast to drop to 3000-4500ft over the next few days. Fingers crossed, opening day will be a good one. Check out the zone and ski video.

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22
Mar

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This past Wednesday (3/18/15) Jerad Merbs and I headed up into the “Know Snow Wonderland” where everything seems to be relative as far as an approach for skiing. Whether it’s a drive to the closet volcano, or spinning chair lift, Jerad and I would have to put the time in some way or another to get to “skins on” mode. We chose the shorter drive, which gives a bigger/steep/longer approach to the snow, but we are at home in the mountains :-) . We were blessed with some sweet views of Mt. Stuart, but socked in all around us, on a skiable crust for our first 500 feet or so, then a wall of “fly paper” let you know the crust became breakable and very testy on the ski skills. What a great day in the hills!

 

Below is a short vid of our very foggy day this past Wed.

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21
Mar

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Alright, here’s a very special post to me, that I’ve thought about probably a little too long. So here it is, first, most people know me as just a guy who loves skiing/friends more than most things in life. A lot of Alpental locs know my dad, Neil Tietjen, the same way. However, I do need to express how hard it was for me not to sound off about Ferguson, MO, but what I will say is, I was raised by a PEACE officer that would put his life (and has many times) on the line for you in order to protect and serve. I also have been heavily influenced by the close peace office friends of my father. The kind of cops that pull you over for a traffic violation (which he & they were uniform officers in the early days), that you know you were guilty of committing :-) , and with proper RESPECT (this video link Steve Harvey interviews Michael Brown’s mother and at 9:00 into the video he tells how he taught his boys to RESPECT peace officers, I was taught by my father exactly how to act in this situation. This came after the earlier days of teaching me not to touch the electric outlets or pet rattlesnakes ;-) ), BINGO, you get a warning and gained a friend that WE put their to protect us. OK, enough of that, now on to the real awesome father, protector, and now die hard skier (who is having a tough time this year just like all of us NW skiers). I grew up with the coolest dad ever, however, in school I wasn’t allow to share one of those many cool things about dad. Well those days have long since past, and having seen and snuck my closest friends a peek of his super detailed scrap book he put together many years ago, I started asking dad to write his stories down to share with the world. I wasn’t an easy thing to do, as my dad did not want to write a book for a bunch of reasons, and not because of the time involved. Well, lucky for me, he is one of the biggest supporters of The Snow Troopers and a couple years back, I spent some time over Northern Idaho skiing the Cabinets and Selkirks (doing it all based out of his pad and pizzeria), where I got a lot of chances to pitch writing the book. Next thing, I’m back home in WA and get a call from mom, telling me he has been in his office every morning writing!?!? Almost 600 pages later of hunting and pecking a keyboard (I told mom, never tell him of the audio software she could have let him know was on his computer, shortening his time in the office ;-) – my family is a bunch of jokesters and we laugh very HARD when together), his book “Old School Narc” was completed! It made me tear up to receive the news. So that being said, please help support The Snow Troopers by purchasing and reading about the BIGGEST supporter of The Snow Troopers, my dad, Neil Tietjen… A real badass that always “Lives to Ski Another Day”.

 

Here a look at the back cover and press release & and most of all the AMAZON LINK:

 

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OLD SCHOOL NARC: by NEIL TIETJEN

Retired 34 year law enforcement veteran Neil Tietjen has written a first-person account of his harrowing experiences as an undercover narcotics agent with the Tucson Police Department and Arizona Narcotics Strike Force. “Old School Narc” details the escapades of Tietjen and his fellow agents as they pioneered undercover narcotics investigations from the back alleys of Tucson, AZ across the vast, dangerous and inhospitable areas along the U.S./Mexican border.

Tucson, AZ – In the 1970’s, while Neil Tietjen was serving as a Tucson Police officer, Arizona’s location on the international border to Mexico earned it the dubious distinction of being the #1 drug import capital of the United States. In an effort to eradicate the flow of illicit drugs into the country while eliminating the crimes and violence accompanying them, a select group of agents chosen from various statewide law enforcement agencies were brought together to form an elite Narcotics Strike Force that was the first of its kind in the nation.

Tietjen, a native New Yorker and Marine Corps veteran who had served in the Viet Nam War, was one of the initial agents chosen for assignment to the new interagency Narcotics Strike Force. In “Old School Narc”, Tietjen chronicles in pulse-pounding, heart-wrenching detail how he and his fellow agents covertly infiltrated the southern Arizona drug culture and successfully conducted undercover drug investigations throughout both urban and wilderness landscapes without their true identities ever being uncovered.

In that pre-internet, pre-cellphone and pre-law enforcement technology era, Narcotics Strike Force agents investigated and pursued their prey, ‘Old School’; succeeding in their missions and staying alive with little more than their wits, disguises, guns, and massive amounts of tenacity and courage.

“Old School Narc” provides an insider’s view of what it was like for Tietjen to live and work behind the badge; leading parallel lives among heinous drug traffickers to whom violence and death were simply the tools of their trade, while never sacrificing his humanity, integrity or sense of humor in the process.

“Old School Narc” can be purchased on Amazon.com and through the University of Arizona Bookstore. The author is available for interviews and speaking engagements upon request. “Old School Narc” can also be followed on Facebook.

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20
Mar

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Here’s a BIG day Adam Roberts and Tim Black spent on Mt. Shuksan’s White Salmon Glacier (via the Arm), from just 2 dayz ago (3/18/15). As you will see in the video below, the last storm that rolled over the PNW, mostly as rain, did actually provide some great “bottomless feeling” powder skiing in the higher zones (above the Cascade ski lifts). Our ski areas might be taking the beating of a decade right now, but there is still great skiing in them thar hills of “White Gold”, that is if you’re up for a beautiful walk in the mountains, FIRST (or call North Cascade Heli – for a lift to the “GAME ON GOODS”! But always remember, LIVE TO SKI ANOTHER DAY, and if you are heading up to the Mt. Baker zone, be sure to stop in and see our friends at the Glacier Ski Shop (especially if you forgot and need to rent/buy something to make the trip happen).


photo – Tim Black skinning the Shuksan Arm, photo and video credit/ Adam Roberts


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18
Mar

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This is a great trip Tim Black, Tyler and Thomas Tran all took this past 3/7 – 3/8/2015, up Hwy 20 for a sweet tour dubbed the “Magic S Loop”. Hitting a nice weather window, the gang was rewarded with Amazing N.Cascade views, along with fantastic “Spring Like” conditions. Check it out, then go get high in the Cascades, too (’cause that’s where yesterday’s fresh waits).
photo and video credit / Tim Black

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17
Mar

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DAMN! I was just getting ready to post up, YET another vid from last week when Adam Roberts sent over this SUPER one, from YESTERDAY. As most of you know, the Cascades just received a nice dose of snow in the higher elevations, those with perfect timing were rewarded. Enjoy, and then get out for some of your own freshies!


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16
Mar

Good news: WSDOT has announced that Cayuse Pass is scheduled to reopen in just 10 – yes, TEN – days from tomorrow on Friday, March 27, followed by Chinook Pass on Friday, April 3. A rare spring time treat after an unseasonably mild winter. The scheduled reopening dates are historically early for both passes. Chinook Pass is located on SR 410 between the towns of Enumclaw and Naches. The 5,430-foot-high pass is about five miles east of the Cayuse Pass summit. Chinook Pass provides the east entrance to Mount Rainier National Park.

WSDOT maintenance crews will work to compress what would typically be 12-13 weeks to prepare the roadway into just 2-3 weeks. “We are going to work hard to speed up the clearing process to get the passes open for drivers,” said WSDOT Assistant Regional Manager of Maintenance Dave McCormick. “However, safety for our crews and the traveling public will remain our number one priority.” Recreational access is restricted prior to the highways reopening on SR 410 from Chinook Pass to the White River Y and on SR 123 on Cayuse down to the tunnel while crews operate heavy equipment on the roadway. Thereafter, Chinook Pass will reopen on the east side at Morse Creek, five miles east of the summit, and on the west side at the intersection of SR 410 and SR 123. Traffic will be reduced to a single lane just east of the Chinook summit due to highway damage from the previous winter. On Cayuse, traffic will be allowed on SR 410 at Crystal Mountain Boulevard and SR 123 near Stevens Canyon Road. Parking areas along the roadways will not be available until further in the season. For more information refer to the Mount Rainier website. As we count down to this year’s early opening, check out this video featuring WSDOT’s Avalanche Specialist, John Stimberis, from a past opening day at Chinook Pass. Next up: North Cascades Highway SR20 which WSDOT began to clear today in hopes of reopening in a month or less. Live to ski another day!

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16
Mar

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Recently, Tara and Carl Simpson returned from their 2015 road trip, which lead them through Big Sky country to Big Sky, MT. Carl and Tara had a blast, as Carl mentioned they skied all sides of the mountain which has massive relief and good adrenaline producing chutes, etc… Thanks Carl, for the sweet, different, view on a mountain often spoken of, but not often seen (the way we get to see it through your lens).


photo and video credit Carl Simpson


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