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Where’s the Trip Reports?

WA elsewhere
Posted by avajane on 3/18/23 5:32pm

So what’s going on? Looks like hundreds of people read Trip Reports - but nobody Posts one!  This used to be the spot to goto to find timely reports that help you make decisions. It’s not always easy figuring out what’s good and where. If there are really scores of people looking - then help out and write a timely report about where you went and what you found…

Buggy website, social media alternatives, not trying to "blow up the spot"...

So many people are out there getting it when it's good, I only feel the need to post about the more exotic, off-the-beaten-path trips these days

@avajane I agree 100% with kamtron and have a suggestion for improving your experience here. Instead of using trip reports to tell you when & where to ski, why not try doing things the other way around? First pick an objective that you're excited about, then find the right day for it, and THEN look for trip reports that might help you understand what the route is like and keep you from getting lost or cliffed out. 

Social media and lack of energy behind this site's direction/leadership (notice the self-criticism) - if anyone wants to take over, I'd be happy to do a graceful hand-over. Also open to doing a quick push to improve a few things around here (looking for doers, not ideators, TBH).

I liked it the way it was. Lots of quick and timely reports to help with choosing where to go. I also always enjoyed the more “high end” reports about steep skiing, big mountains and first or notable ascents. I know what Tim is saying - but if people stop writing trip reports there won’t be any to search thru as this site will be gone. Tim has long done a great job with his great trip reports.

Maybe the new guide books out there now are good enough. I just know hard it was to know when to go where.- when I was starting out. I hiked lots of dirt by getting somewhere too late. Too early in the Spring can be even worse.

By the way, Blewett has lots of snow and will be good for a while.

In so many respects I think the majority of long time Cascade BC skiers are protecting their stashes.  I am open to hearing criticism for this, but it seems that some folks are using NWAC Recent Obs as the new TR dump. Oft thinly veiled as snow stability obs.  I don't mind, as it is my answer to Avajane's question.  I visit there for the most up to date condition info.  What isn't shared there, nor is it meant to be, is the detailed tour descriptions of TAY past.  

The internets are ever changing/devolving/evolving.  What about TAY Facebook?  It used to be accessible to non-facebookers like me, now requires a FB subscription.  Are posts as frequent there as when it first came about?  Once I could see it w/o FB subscript.

I enjoyed putting a healthy dose of energy into TAY for many years.  I just searched my TRs by "author" with my name.  Not timely info but does provide access and terrain info.  Surprised to see the total to be 149 TRs.  Maybe I don't want to see that info broadly advertised anymore?  There are so many bc skiers now.  Though, I guess I should post one for a clean 150.  Maybe later.  But I think TAY, as great as it once was as a resource, as a clearinghouse for ideas and discussion, is fading into Internet noise.  My sincere appreciation to all the administrators from Charles to present.

Thanks John. Those Obs are a resource. I always look locally, but I can see how they could be used for other areas. 

i started writing trip reports on Rec.climbing as Avajane in the early days on the internet when it was on Newsgroups. Just took Ava Jane skiing at Blewett yesterday, and she’s almost 30…Time moves on. Maybe a young person should take over TAY and they could figure out how to make it “in” again. 

As an old timer I pine for the good ole days when Sky and Jason posted magazine quality first descents that I enjoyed reading to get psyched. Over the years many of us quit doing detailed and photo filled TRs and just posted a quick conditions report for a general area (north slopes around Stevens Pass, etc.) to help others in planning. I certainly appreciated that myself. Now even that seems to have faded or moved over to Facebook where it is much harder to find IMO. The telemetry sites are great, but it was nice to get a report from someone who skied it the day before you go. I do want to thank the few contributors who continue to post (you won't see any from me since I'm recovering from ACL surgery this year). I don't have any answers, just sad to see it fade away.

I think at first those sort of conditions TRs moved over to Facebook, but even now, those groups are too big and community too large for people to feel comfortable sharing their stashes. NWAC obs seems to be the best place to get conditions info, or following the correct people on Strava. The scarcity mindset has taken hold. I personally mostly write TRs about interesting, off the beaten path stuff because I know that I don't need to encourage more people to go to a popular zone like the Source Lake Backcountry. I have enough followers on Strava. But I understand how that can be frustrating to people who used to use this forum for that kind of information. @Avanaje, we certainly appreciate all your updates about the Wenatchee Mountains.

Jim: "Over the years many of us quit doing detailed and photo filled TRs and just posted a quick conditions report for a general area (north slopes around Stevens Pass, etc.) to help others in planning. I certainly appreciated that myself."

Hi Jim, I too thought that was a nice middle ground that helped in planning w/o leaving the metaphorical "bread crumb path" in to a specific "stash".  To be honest, I have hardly left Blewett over the past couple winters or I would consider doing that sort of post again.  I was never really strong this winter and have few partners outside of the olé L-worth crowd.  So I opt to meet them on Hwy 97 and rarely hit I-90 or Hwy2 anymore.  Hwy 97 is really hit hard these days and storms are spread out far enough that it always seems tracked out unless you have the freedom of schedule to hit it day after a new snow.  For decades it was a little bit of heaven only E-burg, Upper Kittco, and L-wrth/Wen folks cared about.

I was too lazy to even get a Snowpark Prmt for Cle Elum Valley which is now required valleywide.  Should I have a better winter in 2023-24 for more tours on the crest, I'll restart posting zonal, aspect and elevation specific condition reports w/o giving away the exact locale.  Silas style.

 How I do miss your photo prowess though, Jim.  I'll still throw up photos in Flickr albums of tours since it doesn't seem to gather the attention of folks researching tours in general.

Wonder if people's dwindling narrative skills has anything to do with it?  It takes time and effort to draft a compelling TR, skills that may be fading.

But enter Chat GPT!  Maybe there is a well-written TR wave coming!

I am trying to practice my version of getting back to basics.

I think everyone would agree that the number of winter backcountry enthusiasts has grown, maybe exponentially, in the last 20 years.

Watching places that saw few, if any, visitors become frequented.  Not that outdoor enthusiasm isn’t fantastic, but so is responsibly and sustainably recreating.  Personally, I began viewing the act of writing TRs positively correlated with the massive influx of people ski touring/splitboarding.  I also recognize that I am assuming the possible fallacy of “correlation does not equal causation”.  Only this time I think it does equate to causation.  This spurred me to think about what I could do in an attempt to alleviate my role in this conundrum.  For me it was simple - no more TR posts.

I totally agree with what was stated about how the TAY community has had a pretty unique charisma in past years.  If you enjoy posting TRs and disagree, I harbor no judgement!  Get after it and do your thing!  Only stating my personal sentiment, definitely not characteristic for anyone else.  

By “back to basics” it is meant to take action doing the research, evaluating the snowpack and recent telemetry, pouring over topography, analyzing weather and avalanche reports, setting itineraries, etc. I still spend a good deal of time planning for and executing excursions, only without using or writing TRs.  It’s brought me back to feeling “in the moment”, and that’s nice ‘cause I feel old.

As a long-time reader and newly minted TR author, I've noticed a decline in TR participation. This observation has prompted me to take action by providing some beta and a few pow-licious photos in hopes of raising the stoke, which could help build a more welcoming forum for all BC enthusiasts. Whether you're a noob learning the ropes or a grizzled vet trying to protect "your" stash, I believe we can benefit from sharing our experiences and knowledge.

I've personally gained a lot from reading other people's TRs, which have helped me learn where and when to go. My goal is to continue growing the BC community in Washington, and I recently spent four days at the Kees and Claire Hut in British Columbia. I would love to see a hut system like that here in the Cascades. Additionally, I believe more BC parking lots/areas should be plowed all winter to reduce the need for semi-legal parking or very long approaches on less frequented slopes.

Spending time in the wilderness often leads to a greater sense of stewardship and a longer-term view of our impact on the planet. Let's work together to build a community that values and protects these natural spaces.


Well, isn't this an exciting topic? I've been eagerly awaiting the trip reports as much as anyone else! It's always fascinating to read about others' adventures and experiences. Whether it's exploring new destinations, trying out local cuisine, or embarking on thrilling activities, trip reports never fail to inspire wanderlust and spark curiosity. Plus, they provide valuable insights and tips for fellow travellers. So, let's keep our eyes peeled for those trip reports and get ready to embark on virtual journeys through the experiences of others. And if you're looking for more inspiration, check out some graduation speech topics https://essaypro.com/blog/graduation-speech-ideas. Cheers to unforgettable adventures!

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2023-03-19 00:32:48