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| | |-+  July 2, 2004, Mt. Bradley, Douglas, Alaska
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Author Topic: July 2, 2004, Mt. Bradley, Douglas, Alaska  (Read 1594 times)
GregLange
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July 2, 2004, Mt. Bradley, Douglas, Alaska
« on: 07/03/04, 01:21 PM »

Well, they say you can never go home again. However, the mountains of one's former home always hold the promise of loines one might never have previously done. Such is the case for me. I lived in Juneau for 16 years, and only skiied the local ski area for about 3 seasons. When my mom invited me here to share her 50th hi school reunion, I knew the skis would need to accompany me.

There is a 3400 ft. peak directly behind one of the smaller nearby towns that I always knew had some great potential for a run. But, I also knew that the recent warm weather Seattle had experienced had depleted the easily accessible snow here, as well. Thanks to "Telemike" and "YesIsaidYes", as well as the good folks at The Foggy Mountain Shop, I knew that I could get a few turns in, with just a bit of sweat equity.

After I arrived on July 1, the clouds parted just long enough for me to scope out some potential lines from my vantage point in town. I set my alarm for early, and kept my fingers crossed for reasonable weather conditions. I awoke to sunshine on the peak, and lit out for the trail. Now, mind you, 3400 feet doesn't seem high, except that the trailhead was at 125 feet; I knew it'd be a sweaty gain. (Hiking trails in Alaska tend to be climbers access trails in Washington - straight freakin' UP!) About 1000 feet below the summit, I found my line. The other one I had considered had a 60-degree headwall, and about a 3-foot wide access point; being alone, I decided to take it easy. I continued up, and was greeted by a 4-point buck just below the summit block, as well as numerous covey's of grouse and babies. Afgter summiting, I hurried down to the snow. I got in  about a 1/4 mile long ski run that grand totalled 350 vertical feet. (Hey, finding easily reached snow does not always guarantee an epic run!) Returning to the car, I savored Alaskan skiing in July, and checked out all of the other places that a winter's worth of living would help me to access, if I lived here still.

Happy summer to all, and I hope that the snowpack will carry us to mid-October!
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