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Turns All Year: Previous Home Page Galleries
|This is a gallery of images which appeared on the Turns All Year home page in the past. Thumbnail images on this page can be clicked to view the full-sized photos, and lead into a slide show sequence for the gallery. The photos are from a backcountry skiing trip to Silver Creek, in the Wenatchee National Forest, Washington Cascades. The snow-free trail climbed up to the hanging valley of Silver Creek, filled with snow and old-growth forest. A four mile cross-country backcountry skiing route led through the forest to alpine meadows still draped in winter.|
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Turns All Year CD-ROM
|The complete version of this photo gallery is now available on Turns All Year CD-ROM. Below you can view thumbnail photos from this gallery.|
Turns All Year CD-ROM contains over 180 photo galleries, containing more than 3200 full-sized photos, from backcountry skiing and snowboarding trips in the Pacific Northwest.
|from April 7, 2003:|
Silver Creek, Wenatchee National Forest, Washington, March 27, 2003
Trail at 2500'
Silver Creek near lip
of hanging valley
West Peak from meadows
Photos by Charles Eldridge
Associated trip report: The road was clear to the trailhead (2400'), with sunshine and birdsong. The trail was bare to about 2700', then patches of snow, and finally continuous snow upon entering a shady gully at about 3000'. At the lip of the hanging valley (3600') there was 4-5' of snowpack, with about 3" new under the trees. Skiing up the valley through the old-growth forest, the sun came and went, triggering loose tree avalanches, but no icy bombs and I didn't get hit. For the first 3 miles of the valley the going was pretty fast, with enough soft snow to let my waxless skis climb well, but above about 4500' the new snow became quite a bit deeper and the last mile to the meadows was hard work. The snow also started sticking to the fishscale pattern, making a sort of snow-crampon which helped in climbing the steeper sections but was also more work. When I reached the meadows (4800') I was treated to sunshine and blue sky, and the snow stopped sticking to my skis, but trailbreaking was even more work, with about 10" of new over about 10" of rain-soaked over a solid crust. Ê
About when I sat down for lunch, the clouds returned for the rest of the afternoon. The various slopes around the meadow didn't look very inviting for turns this day, so to get warm I set a nice XC loop around the perimeter of the meadows, and skied it several times - it got nicer and nicer as I smoothed it out. By the time I left the meadows (~4:00), any snow which had received sun was developing a rather substantial crust, but as soon as I entered the forest on the descent there was no crust. I had a very enjoyable run down to the flats at 4000'. Tree drip had made many areas fast, and un-dripped areas provided soft snow for turns. I followed my tracks down through the forest, hopping into them to maintain speed, out to slow down or make a few turns. From the flats to the lip was a series of slight climbs followed by fast glides through the trees. I was able to ski about 500vf down from the lip, the last right on the trail until I rounded a bend to a south exposure and completely bare trail. This was easily the most strenuous of all the trips I have taken to Silver Creek, and I collapsed in bed as soon as I got home!
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