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+  Turns All Year Trip Reports
|-+  2013 Backcountry Trip Reports
| |-+  February 2013 Backcountry Trip Reports
| | |-+  Feb. 18th and 19th, Back Side of Shuksan Arm.
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Author Topic: Feb. 18th and 19th, Back Side of Shuksan Arm.  (Read 1470 times)
Vince Lamphier

Posts: 73

Feb. 18th and 19th, Back Side of Shuksan Arm.
« on: 02/21/13, 07:30 PM »

    It was snowing lightly as Steve and I with dogs Davey, Whisper, and Jersey headed from the upper parking lot at around noon towards Swift Creek Drainage to set up camp and hike some lines on the back side of the arm. Are plan was to ski that area that night and get up early and head for Mt Ann. I noticed fairly shortly that I had majorly over-packed my pack. I felt like I was carrying weights up the hill. Not to be detoured though I ignored the pain and went on. As soon as we dropped into Swift Creek I could tell we were in for some great snow. The champagne style snow was keeping me in the white room most of the time - one of my favorite places. We shot down through the creek and out into the valley, and then eventually switched over. I have two dogs, a black lab and an Australian Shepard. My aussie is getting up there just a little bit, and when we reached the valley I noticed she was coughing a lot. I really love that little dog and was a little nervous. We pushed on a couple hundred yards until we came to our first patch of trees and I hastily set up camp to get my dog put away in the tent as she was still hacking. Once in the tent she settled down and then we set out to do some laps. The snow was so nice and it was great hiking in snow shoes with 10 inches on hard pack. The snow skied amazing and we were having a great time. We headed back to camp and made some dinner and then went out for a night run. This was my first time boarding at night under the moonlight, and what an amazing feeling with that crystal light pow under foot. The feeling was nothing short of amazing. It almost felt like i could here and feel all the individual snowflakes, almost like floating on crystals. As i went to sleep totally exhausted, I found out that I had not taken enough care when smoothing out the snow under my tent. I have a zero degree Marmot Never Summer bag that I got for my birthday and this bag is the warmest most comfortable bag I have ever slept in. I would of slept like a baby except for I was sliding into a hole on one side because my snow pad was so uneven, and also fighting my dogs for my sleeping pad. By the end of the night I had gotten some rest, just not the best. Because of my dogs unusual health we decided to  stay close to camp instead of MT Ann and do a couple laps. The sun was out in all her glory and the riding was awesome, we decided to break camp around noon and head out. Oh my! If I thought my pack was heavy on the way in, it felt like I was carrying lead on the way out. For a short hike, it was one of the most grueling that I ever recall. Next time I do an over nighter I will be definitely be counting ounces and leaving a few things behind. Thanks to Steve for sharing this great experience, if not a learning one. I got my dog home safe and her days for winter skiing may be over. That's OK because she will get plenty of turns in with me in the summer.   Cheers!

The rest of the photos at WHATCOM STUDIO

Photo Steve Anderson

Photo Steve Anderson

« Last Edit: 02/22/13, 07:29 AM by Vince Lamphier » Logged
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