Mount St Helens

WA Cascades West Slopes Central
Posted by myikat on 4/7/21 12:51am

Road is in OK shape. Snow right from the parking lot at Marble Mount. Millions of boot trails and butt glissade paths but no consistent skintrack. Freezing level predicted to be 7K but consistent perfect corn all the way to the rim. Fun was had on open slopes and edge to edge in the wormflows. Among the best descents Ive done there top to bottom. One very large slide off a steep SE facing ridge to the west of the main route which showed a deep crown below the cornice. I was surprised to see a group of skiers on a similar nearby aspect. Get it while its good! 

A partner and I skied St. Helens on Saturday Mar. 27th. Like you experienced, the conditions were very nice for climbing and skiing, although ski crampons were a must early in the morning. Because of the number of skiers the Swift Glacier descent was quickly getting skied out. We shifted over and skied down west of the climbing route, toward Monitor Ridge, to find fresh corn. The forest service estimated there were upwards of 1,000 people on the mountain that day. Cars were parked 2 miles down the road from Marble Mountain Sno-Park. I've never seen anything like it...the day was more of a "happening" than a ski tour. What surprised me was how many people were on skis. Not too many years ago skiers on popular volcano routes (Adams, Muir, etc.) were a novelty. Now it's 40% of the crowd. Anyway, the exit trail was fun and fast using snowshoers as slalom gates. All in all a great day. BTW rumor has it that the forest service is going to move the first day permits are required back earlier in March to limit the number of climbers to 500. 

Tuesday conditions sounded fantastic!  Along with a friend I took my 15 year old up Helens Monday the 5th for his first ski.  Not many people at all considering reports of pre-permit season!  I didn't anticipate how amazing it would feel to do the route with him, just a really amazing day!

Monday the top 2k was awfully firm and never corned up.  In retrospect, it gave Quinn a full experience, from skins to ski pons down low to booting the last bit 😂  

 Still plenty of snow to ski all the way to the car, that kind of exit never gets old :)




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2021-04-07 07:51:26