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Noheaperture
Nohea



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PostMon Dec 23, 2019 3:14 pm 
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wanting to find some good spots to snow shoe up and ride down. Iím aware of the risks of going solo which is why I want some mellow low angle spots. My primary goal is to avoid any (if thatís even possible) avalanche terrain in central Washington and to get some turns in on powder rather than fight the madness at resorts. Iíve done a scrub on the web and found the Wenatchee crest to be right along the line of what Iím looking for. Iím open to other options and tips.
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MesiJezi
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PostTue Dec 24, 2019 7:59 am 
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The Wenatchee Crest might be too mild... It's really more of a snowshoe / xc ski trail. There's some good low angle terrain on the other side of 97 right there. Hex mountain near cle elum is another spot. Are you out of Ellensburg? Get on caltopo and turn slope shading on--pretty good resource for scoping out bc opportunities!
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Randito
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PostTue Dec 24, 2019 9:02 am 
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I skinned and skied from the Silver Fir base area at Summit Central on Sunday.   They aren't running the Silver Fir or Central express lifts yet -- and for good reason.  Skinning up the lower part of the Outback run on Silver Fir involved several open creek crossings.    Higher up coverage improved considerably -- but there is still plenty of brush poking through.   I think another 2 feet of snow will be needed before they can open the Silver Fir area to lift skiers.  So if you are OK with carefully picking your way down between brush and open creeks you could go there.   The Summit East ski area is another popular destination for hike up / ride down fun without all the risks of full backcountry.

Most typical backcountry touring routes don't have enough snowpack for an enjoyable outing yet.  When there isn't enough snow to cover fallen logs or form snow bridges over tiny creeks -- skiing in the forest is "adventure skiing", but considerably less enjoyable and certainly riskier.

I like to see a snow depth of 48 inches or more on the Snoqualmie Pass snow gauge -- currently the reading is 18 inches.


https://data.nwac.us/OSOSNO

FWIW: There are some north aspect clear cut slopes off of NF-800 west of Swauk/Blewett pass that I believe you are refering to by "Wenatchee Crest" -- I've ski toured along that road and look at those slopes -- and even when snowpack depths are "normal"  those slopes have always looked too much like a "Christmas Tree Farm" to be very appealing.

If you were to go some place along HWY-97 near Swauk/Blewett pass -- "Tronsen Meadow" might serve -- it's an actual meadow and requires only about a foot of snow to cover the flowers.    It is very low angle -- I've used it for practice turns with beginning cross country skiers on cross country gear.   The steepness is similar to that of terrain serviced by a "magic carpet" at a ski area.

Try googling "Just Get Out Blewett Pass" for other ideas
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Jeff
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PostTue Dec 24, 2019 9:40 am 
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Maybe Kendall Peak Lakes?
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Downhill
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PostTue Dec 24, 2019 10:23 am 
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When you say you want to ride "low angle slopes" solo - please refresh your memory of the risks of slides/avalanche relative to slope steepness.  I'm not suggesting you don't know this already - it's just a good reminder for everyone heading out in the backcountry - myself included.

Here's a chart to refresh your understanding.  Have fun and be safe!

Avalanche risk by slope angle chart!
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OwenT
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PostWed Dec 25, 2019 2:20 pm 
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Downhill wrote:
When you say you want to ride "low angle slopes" solo - please refresh your memory of the risks of slides/avalanche relative to slope steepness.  I'm not suggesting you don't know this already - it's just a good reminder for everyone heading out in the backcountry - myself included.

Here's a chart to refresh your understanding.  Have fun and be safe!

Avalanche risk by slope angle chart!

I wonder if this was made with any particular snowpack in mind. I just took and AIARE 1 in Utah and my instructor said that these numbers tend to vary a little bit with climate. In Utah the magic number is 38 and we were considering typical avalanche terrain to be between 30 and 50 degrees.
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BigBrunyon
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PostWed Dec 25, 2019 6:09 pm 
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It's all just one big THICK ice crust down to the ground in the sno pass vicinities! No soft layers all hard!

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YOU NEVER KNOW!!
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thunderhead
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PostWed Dec 25, 2019 6:53 pm 
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I was at summit today.  Anything low down is... worth waiting on... lets just say that.

Theres not a huge selection of moderate low terrain.  Hyak(or other non open summit ski area slopes) is the common choice.  Pineapple pass might be considered lowish angle depending on your standards.  Parts of silver.

Theres a lot of very low angle that nonetheless gains decent height eventually... amabalis, kendal road, some other FS roads whose names i forgot.  Probably best for nordic gear, these, but still a fun cruise down.
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