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Ski Touring Snoqualmie Pass

Lower Flanks of Kendall Peak Area

December 4, 2010

Some friends from work were planning to do some backcountry skiing near Snoqualmie Pass, so I asked if I could join them. Tera, Andy, Bryan, Rob and I all drove up to the trailhead just off the north end of exit 53. Tera, Andy and I were all on telemark skis, while Rob and Bryan had their AT set ups.

It was a beautiful sunny day as we started skinning up through the trees. We were impresses with how deep the snow was considering that the ground was bare less than three weeks ago.

This was Rob's first time skinning so he was borrowing a pair of skins from Andy. They weren't designed for his skis, so we ended up duct taping the tails a few times to keep them on. Andy and Tera were out front, breaking trail while Bryan, Rob and I brought up the rear. Rob did a great job of negotiating the steeper pitches and kick turns on the way up.

We took at break near a stump covered with snow which made a perfect jump. While everyone was eating and rehydrating, I decided to provide some entertainment by attempting to jump off it. In my defense, my skins were still on my skis, so that made it very difficult to gain the right amount of speed. With no momentum, I was forced to lunge off the end of the jump which then cause me to plop straight down in the deep snow which further caused me to face plant. I provided entertainment, but not in the way I had intended!

We continued skinning up to a steeper, rocky face where Rob and I took another break enjoying the great views. Tera, Andy, and Bryan continued up for another 20 minutes or so before turning around and skiing back down. Always the gentleman, Bryan made me feel better by falling right in front of me while I had my camera out. Thanks, Bryan! Tera claimed to have fallen, but she was always conveniently out in front far enough to where I could not capture the event on film!

Andy on the other hand had a great launch off a pillowed stump. While skiing back down from the upper slopes, he spied this double lineup of stumps. Andy nailed the first jump, but the deep snow slowed him down too much for the second jump. We didn't make it up to the glades, but we had a great day in the mountains making turns. Thanks everyone! Looking forward to more skiing this winter with you all!