The Never Winter

For this week’s update, we’ve got a sweet edit and we’re going to try something new, a guest writer. Those of us in the valley have been hunkered down, attempting to hold on to any piece of sanity not blown away in the wind.  Jared on the other hand, has been getting after it down south.  The awesome part is, the guy feels bad for us.  Of course, not bad enough to indulge in a full body sandblast of glacial silt. good on ya brother. While the low pressure stacks, and you’re prepping for actual skiing, enjoy a little HatchYourTrax love…

I love Hatcher Pass. I ski there every chance I get. Skiing the Snowbird in August, the Lane in September and October, and Hatch Peak in November; overall it’s been a great early season. I hit some rocks and some tundra, but it was good times as usual. There’s another reason I’m optimistic, in spite of the recent “skipocalypse” at Hatcher Pass. It’s because I’ve been rallying elsewhere, I’m a traitor. I’ve been making the journey south to Turnagain Pass. If you haven’t heardThat’s where the snow’s been lately. Yes, I’m still hitting rocks and most of the two feet of “colds moke” is huge blades of hoar, but the high pressure get after-it weekends are fueling me through another darkening season in AK. There’s tons of exploring to do out there, and here’s the clincher, it’s been windless and sunny.

Thanksgiving weekend was a crazy ski-fest, with a broken bone evac mission on Tincan followed by Bluebird POW on the moto side of Turny. It was great to ski and feast with bunches of friends and especially excellent to ski with my Palmer pals up on Seattle Ridge. Sierra was killin it on some new school fat tele skis while Master Bash was streaming Palmer Free Radio from the summit (That’s Big Cabbage Radio 89.5 Palmer for those of you not in the know). Ryan came out to keep us company on our ski tour and treated us to a night in Hope testing out his sweet new sauna. This last weekend I had to go back to Turnagain for my powder fix and I ended up spending a couple of days really enjoying getting some beginner friends out into the backcountry. I have to give a shout out to Joe, Deb, and Adam for spinning some laps with me. Touring with a group of backcountry newbies is a good test of patience and it’s nice to be reminded you can have fun in any conditions. It’s a good time of year to keep it reeled in anyway…there are a lot of rocks out there. We found some great snow and incredible views, and after all, I watched friends experience the joy of some of their first powder turns in Alaska…I always like to invest in future ski partners. I’ll be back in the Talkeetnas soon, but for now, while granite and tussocks sit in the gusts, coated in several inches of frost and rime, I’ll keep finding partners to head south.



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