Home > Trip Reports > October 12, 2002, Mt. Rainier, Muir

October 12, 2002, Mt. Rainier, Muir

WA Cascades West Slopes South (Mt Rainier)
Posted by Andrew Carey on 10/12/02 8:04pm
Forecast: bluebird day after new snow earlier in the week. Off I went. Turned out to be true. As I climbed above Pebble Creek, I marveled at the lack of snow. The "humps" looked more like eroded limestone than snow and I thought "who'd ski that?" ???; I came across Bud and Baloo and I remarked "this is pitiful" >:(; they said they would ski the humps ;D. I continued up, crossing the exposed rock ridge to ski the snowfields on skier's right above Pebble Creek ;); covered with new snow, not bad :). The rest on the area up to Muir looked sad, so I made it an early day and headed home 8). abc
Thanks for the info, Andy. I have been wondering if there was any significant new snow up there. How deep was the new snow where you skied ("skier's right above Pebble Creek") - just a few inches?

Sounds like we really need another good storm before there will be any extensive skiing on anything but nasty old snow?


That field is pretty well sheltered and had about 3 inches of consolidated powder.  Lot of the other areas looked patchy. abc

Baloo and I hung out up there long enough to get in four runs on the lower 500vf of the muir snowfield on saturday...although I had hoped for better coverage...just to get the skis on new snow for the first time in many months was so nice.  The far eastern edge of the lower snowfield above Pebble Creek was decent...one could ski the whole thing and only scratch through to old neve a few times.  
By mid afternoon when we hiked down there was already signifigant melting of what little new snow there was and I imagine that by now its just about all gone :(  
Hopefully only a couple more weeks and then we'll get some snow that sticks around for a little longer.

Good info, guys. Thanks.

Anyone been up there in the last week???  Where is the snowline sitting at???   Got some new toys to try out and tweak and can't make it to Hood....

I think Charles may be heading up that way sometime this week.  You might keep an eye tuned for his report when he gets back.  Might be getting some snow up there today...  White Pass has snow on the roadway:

I called MRNP yesterday ( 10/28 ) to see if there had been any new snow out of the storminess Sunday-Monday. Paradise VC is closed weekdays now, so I talked to a ranger at Longmire. They said that some hikers had reported about 3" of new snow just above the parking lot; when I asked if there was any info for above Pan Point, and mentioned skiing, I was told, "Oh, we are closed for skiing, and you can probably understand why." I said I didn't understand, as people ski up on the permanent snow all year, and the ranger told me, "Well, it's going to be really bad."

So I'm sure glad I called and was able to find out that it is going to be "really bad" - otherwise I might have been surprised when I go up there for my October ski! But with a little new snow, it might not be quite so really bad right now.

Edit: Thanks for the photo, Ron. I looked at that cam yesterday and the road looked bare and wet, so it would seem that the snow fell last night, and maybe Paradise got some more. Unfortunately the NWAC telemetry station for Paradise is out, so the only way to get info about conditions is to risk a call the the ranger...

Hmmm... looks like the photo inserted into the post also updates real time with the DOT web cam.  The original post was a 0826/29 shot, now it shows it at 10 something and its melting!!  Bummer.

There was also a light dusting of snow on Blewett this morning too.  It's getting closer  ;)

Hey, when we got to Mt Hood and purchased our lift tickets, the same thing happened as us as to you, Charles with your call to Paradise.  Except this was at the ticket counter.  The gal asked if I had ever skied here (Mt Hood) in the fall before, "No" (I said)  oh, then you need to know that the conditions are very different than at any other time of the year.  (What I was really thinking was, shoot how could this be any different than skiing off the top of Mt Adams in June). You need to be a very advanced intermediate, or expert skier.  My thought was Yikes, but I calmly said ok, then she said you will have to carry your ski's on the lift and download at the end of the day.  The lift closes at 3:00 if you miss the 3:00 shut off it's a long walk down.  Well with that said, I paid my dues and headed off towards the lift.  The Palmer snow field had been groomed and it was super.  If you were a beginner, it would be tough.  I'm sure they have to tell everyone that the conditions are "different" for liability purposes, and if someone got hurt it's a long way from top to bottom.  With that said, you can't blame the Paradise rangers for erroring on the side of caution, look what they have to put up with everyday in the winter with that inner tube park that they carve out.  

There's a muir snowfield thread going on at:
might shed some additional tibits of info...

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Andrew Carey
2002-10-13 03:04:04