We tried this winter, we really did. But it was a bleak year for the Pacific Northwest. I’ve lived here ten years now, and never seen anything like this.
There was one silver lining to the desperately high snowline: access. And particularly, access to Metal Dome. The Brandywine FSR melted out all the way to the top by early March, and suddenly we were able to drive to 800m and hike up to the col below the summit in just two hours from the car. We went back time and time again, scoring some of the best days in an otherwise forgettable season.
There were a couple of days of okay resort skiing at Whistler, with semi-decent snow and far too many people. There was a huge storm at Red Heather, the only one of the year that actually dumped right down to the highway, where I skied the only true powder outside of that first return to Metal Dome. There was a day out with a new backcountry skier that wasn’t particularly memorable for the snow, but where the group had to make some difficult decisions due to a split in comfort levels and experience and I learned a lot along the way. Mostly, though, there was a lot of hiking.