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Author Topic: Apr 28 - May 1 Muir Snowfield/Kulshan  (Read 740 times)
lakeAffected
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Apr 28 - May 1 Muir Snowfield/Kulshan
« on: 05/02/16, 03:40 PM »

After having skipped our annual spring trip to either OR or WA last year (due to what was hopefully a weather fluke), we were stoked to be back in Cascadia!  We had no plans when we arrived at SeaTac - rode closure reports had me unsure what to do.   Based on forecasts, we went south and headed up towards Camp Muir thurs morn in foggy conditions.  A few glimpses of glacier and blue sky on the drive up had us hopeful and sure enough just before the climb up to Panorama Point we broke out into true Paradise!  Unable to resist the lure of perfect corn we did a couple of short laps near McClure Rock while salivating over all the slopes to the East I had not seen before (only other trip I had done out of Paradise was a Nisqually/Fuhrer/Van Trump).  We then joined back in with all the folks headed up to Camp Muir.  We went a little above camp to see the view of the Ingraham and Little Tahoma before enjoying the fabulous decent down the Muir!  What a perfect run that is!   Although the snow was not quite corn yet, the skiing was great and everyone was having a great time skiing in the brilliant sunshine above the clouds.  Since, the forecast for Friday was poor and the weather was so perfect we did another half lap on the Muir and as we finished we were engulfed in a reverse cloud avalanche!   Never so glad to be following tracks we headed down in a complete white-out from about 7600 feet.  Even with the tracks it got really confusing around Panarama Point.  I was glad to have turned Strava on so that I could see we were on route.   We heard a whistle from another party that had become disoriented also and with the help of the tracks, wands, and Strava, we all made our way down in (thankfully) easy to ski spring slush.

Decided to spend rest of out trip up north and arrived to a pretty much empty Mt. Baker lot Friday morning.   Skinned up to the top of Panaroma dome cat-track and they up the Shuksan arm ridge.  It was foggy and warm but we got enough vis to enjoy the ski back down the ridge and into the ski area.   Picked up enough pollen? though on that run that getting skins to stay on became and issue so we were only able to do one more run before calling it a day. 

Since the glacier road was closed, we were going to drive around to try the Boulder Glacier route but decided to try driving up and were psyched to find the road open.  Evidentally the good news traveled fast as many others were up there also.  Sat was absolutely glorious up there!  Although colder than expected due to a brisk north wind and the headwall way firmer than should be attempted without crampons and axe, we managed to send with Voile ski crampons and a whippet each.   Once we got past the icy bits, the skiing was superb all the way down to pretty much the snow line.   Really wished we had backpacked in as I did not want to leave but beer and pizza at chair 9 were sounding good too.

Back to the Baker lot Sat night, we found lots of folks camping and enjoying the fantastic weather.  Unfortunately it was maybe a bit too nice Sunday as the snow got baked pretty quickly but we got a decent start and managed to ski a few fun runs off Mazama dome and Table Mountain in what I believe has to be one of the prettiest places on the planet!  So cool to see so many folks up there enjoying it!

Hope you all have a fantastic spring/summer ski season - looking so forward to a return visit!   
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