Dec. 28, Kendall Revisited

Avalanche danger rated considerable below 7,000 feet. Looks like a good reason to stay with a safer destination. Kendall again! It was a Saturday and we had a helluva group; Greg, Frank, Mike O, Kari, Seth, Holly, and Eric. Toured up Kendall knob then cruised the ridgeline and dropped the North side of the ridge back into Kendall Peaks basin. The same area as the last post. This time after Eric dug a pit and deemed the snowpack safe, we opted for the open slopes and had some great turns. Excellent group of skiers and a great day to be out in the mountains.

Dec. 26, Kendall Peak Region

The snow has been falling! Today was probably the best powder I have ever had touring! 20-30" of fluffy powder over a small rain crust, that saved us from sinking even deeper. Started from Sahalie with Seth, and found that the river crossings up in the commonwealth have not formed the best snowbridges yet. Managed to cross the creeks without getting wet and started skinning up the lower flanks of Kendall basin. Luckily two skiers had busted in a great skin track leading up to the main slidepath. We caught them just before the slidepath, Tony and Shier. They were only too happy to let us bust the trail out to the South ridge leading up to the Kendall summits. We turned back as the trees thinned out, not wanting to venture out into the main slide paths. Lap 1 - game on! Ripped all the way back down to the creeks in the commonwealth valley. With big grins on our faces, we all agreed another lap was necessary! When we toured back up to the flat area before the slide path, Seth was eyeing the timbered slope that headed up the Left side of the slide path. Maybe 500 feet of vertical, the powder was great, and we did three laps on this upper section before one more great run down to the commonwealth valley floor. A great day of skinning, 4,500' vertical, with a great group of skiers!

Dec. 11 - Mt. Rainier, Paradise

Day 4 - No Snow - Well, we are on snow in the picture, but there does not seem to be much around the Pacific Northwest. After the big rain event last week, the coverage is definitely thin. Looking for snow, we headed to the old reliable, Mt. Rainier. We found snow, but we also found ice, crust, and rocks. Pulled out the ski crampons to get up to Panorama point. Continued up to just past 7,500 feet. Snow was turning into more ice then snow at this point and we decided to call it a day and ski. The views were incredible, and made up for the lack of good snow conditions. Lets hope for more snow this weekend.

Dec 2, 2007 Snoqualmie Summit - West ski area

Day 2 - The adventure today was not in the skiing, but trying to hook up with Greg and Frank. Greg was the first to make it to Alpental. Unfortunately he high centered as soon as he pulled his Audi quatro wagon into the parking lot. On my cell phone I was in contact with Frank, still on I-5 between Olympia and Tacoma, who said it was snowing hard. I was stuck in my neighborhood. The county had not plowed the roads yet, and the snow was about 2 feet deep. I decided to take Francine to work and went around the block, hoping a few people had pushed a path out of the neighborhood. No luck, second time in ten years that I high centered the Ford Explorer driving in the neighborhood. Just as we got the car unstuck, a 4wd, lifted pick-up from the Summit Learning Center came cruising by to pick up Francine's boss. They promptly got stuck, threw on some chains, and plowed up the road. Following in their bulldozed track I actually made it out of the neighborhood and went to rescue Greg. Greg failed to mention the road to Alpental had not been plowed and it was 2 feet deep if your car veered out of the ruts. By the time I got to Greg, he had dug out and was free. We slowly worked our way back to Summit West, and hooked up with Frank. The snow at West was extremely deep and we had a hard time breaking trail, until we crossed the path of a group ahead of us. Snow was too deep and heavy to make good turns, but we did two laps and got some exercise.

Here is picture of the house when I got home, note I already snowblew last night at 11, and this morning at 8. The snow is still coming down!