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| | |-+  May 25, 2012, Chinook Pass Naches loop
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Author Topic: May 25, 2012, Chinook Pass Naches loop  (Read 1208 times)

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May 25, 2012, Chinook Pass Naches loop
« on: 05/25/12, 11:35 PM »

Chinook Pass opened more or less on schedule at 12:15. There were dozens of campers and ATVers waiting in 'line' at the 410/123 triangle for the opening but as far as I could tell no skiers. Loads of snow on the pass, 10 foot cut in places. Also impressive were the cuts into the av fans at the base of the basalt slope, you wonder if those could teeter over into the road kinda like a serac, because they've melted away from the rock.

Looked like the WSDOT team was either still ski controlling the Yakima Peak side or had just finished, fresh craters. I headed the other way for a loop around Naches Peak. Weather mostly cloudy but warmish. Snow was tricky. Anywhere from 1-5" wet, it wasn't really slush, just kinda wet. Probably had been far more than that as snowfall but then melted down into itself. Would slide and pinwheel surface and sometimes spread like margarine underfoot if you cut steep traverse or made hard turn. But it was fine snow for traveling sideways, which is mostly what you do when going around a mountain. In the two spots where there's decent turns to be had I lapped each a couple times. Hardly hero snow but fun in a sick sort of way.

Certainly no lack of coverage, except for maybe in some sunbaked spots on the somewhat high orbit I took around the south side of Naches. Never saw any other skiers but did see some tracks heading up onto the N facing slopes of Naches directly above pass on return that weren't there when I started.

Lots of variability in the weather. Calm one moment then steady 40mpgh the next. Warm sun, then 10 minutes later sleety snow. Couldn't ever see all of Rainier but near end of the day a blue hole settled over enough to at least see Little T.

Turns on the back side note small natural crown under cornices in BG

Hey it's sunny over Crystal, why didn't I go there? (And actually20 minutes later there was a big thundercloud blocking the view.)

Having been to Hawaii recently this wet sluff I set off on a turn reminded me of a pahoehoe lava flow
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