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Tag Archives: mt baker

Gear Spotlight: Garage Brand Skis Made for Right Here

Smaller ski manufacturers, often called garage brands, have been proliferating across the ski industry. Similar to how small, local breweries have popped up everywhere to accommodate specific local tastes, smaller regional ski manufacturers are now designing their skis with local terrain in mind.  Lib Tech, which manufacturers on the Olympic Peninsula, does a lot of their product testing at Mt. …

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Light & Shadow: Winter in the Mt. Baker Backcountry

  The Mount Baker backcountry is magical in black and white. Ever-changing light and shadows continually transform mountain peaks and slopes, highlighting the power and the allure of nature. The backcountry in winter reveals the quiet solitude, the delicate texture of the snow, roiling mountain storms and the infinite sky. The clear air, angle of the light, tonal contrast, shapes …

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Graduation Day

I am inescapably and resoundingly middle-aged. I have been a college student for three years now, liquidating savings and borrowing heavily against presumed future earnings. Recently—remarkably—I graduated: thirty years almost to the day since I finished high school. Early that morning I drove to the mountains for a celebratory ski in the Mt. Baker backcountry, my excuse being that I …

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Doppelgänger on Mount Baker!

Whether you climb up the mountain or go down the hill to the valley, whether you journey to the end of the world or merely walk around your house, none but yourself shall you meet. –   Maurice Maeterlinck, La sagesse et las destinée (Wisdom and Destiny) 1898   Early this year I got a call from a long-time climbing buddy: how …

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Dangerous Powder: The Deadly Pitfalls of Tree Wells

It was June and we were just outside the Mt. Baker Ski Area near the Bagley Lake Parking Lot. My children—who have grown up skiing and climbing—were horsing around in the snow. They were sledding, throwing snowballs, rolling around and pretty much doing everything that they could to get soaking wet in spring isothermal snow. I wasn’t paying super close …

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Top Ten Winter Hikes in Whatcom County

Winter has descended upon us. Skyline Divide, Yellow Aster Butte, and all of your other favorite high country romps are now— thanks to a thick shroud of snow—pretty much off limits until next summer. But there’s no need to put away your hiking shoes. There are scores of low country hikes that for the most part remain snow-free all year …

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Above & Beyond: The End is Just the Beginning

The North Cascades are a hiker’s paradise. The trail system that we enjoy in these northern mountains provides access to spectacular places and ranks among the world’s supreme networks of footpaths. Two of the finest routes in the Mt. Baker area are the Ptarmigan Ridge and Yellow Aster Butte trails. Both transport boot-clad acolytes across landscapes of unforgettable grandeur. Both …

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Alan Majchrowicz: Solitude and Wildflowers

Recently I made a five-day backpacking trip to one of my all-time favorite areas in the North Cascades—Image Lake, located high on Miner’s Ridge in the Glacier Peak Wilderness. For me, this is one of the classic views of mountains and lakes in the Northwest, rivaled only by a few other spots such as Picture Lake/Mount Shuksan and Tipso Lake/Mount …

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John Scurlock: Beyond the Horizon

All my life I’ve been attracted to aviation, photography and travel in wild, remote regions. Prior to building my plane, a Van’s RV6, I climbed and backpacked extensively in the North Cascades, but soon realized that I could use the plane as a platform for exploring it photographically and began doing so in late 2002. I became obsessed with that …

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