The Northwest has been deprived of snow this year to a massive extent. For example, The Olympic Mountain only have 25 percent of the snow they usually have at this time of year and Mt Rainier resembles its June snow cover. Thus, when snow was in the forecast on Wednesday and yesterday this week, Eric and I celebrated by driving out to Mt Baker Ski Area to get in some downhill time. After all, we might not see fresh powder for another month!

The  trails were in great conditions. Fresh soft powder (not concrete) was layered nicely over the runs in early morning. It was clear that there was less snow cover than normal for those who chose to weave in and out of the trees and around the exposed rocks, but for folks like us who stay on the groomed tracks the snow cover was great with nothing sticking up out of the ground. The weather remained mild throughout the day with low clouds that broke every now and then to reveal views of the mountains. We never got full sun exposure which was great.

I saw many folks using the backcountry areas surrounding Mt Baker which concerned me since the Cascades were on a Considerable avalanche alert. The Canyon run was closed due to avalanche danger as well… this saddened me as I consider it the best trail at Baker. At one point Eric and I took a wrong turn and ended up in the trees beside the Canyon. We had to take off our skis (well my skis and his snowboard) and fight our way up the hill back to the main open slopes. Hard work with the horrid ski boots!

All it all it was a wonderful day out on the slopes. Now it is time for a nice freeze dried dinner and a good night sleep in my car!

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