Monday, November 25, 2013

Eearly Season Epicness on Mt. Hood

November corn at Illumination Saddle
One of the best parts of living in the Cascades is that feeling of familiarity that grows between you and your local mountain.  Experiencing an alpine landscape as it transitions through the seasons, from year to year, minute to minute, you start to see notice all the little details and you grow to appreciate the unique privilege of living in such a beautiful place.  Wind patterns, snowpack, temperatures, precipitation - these all change throughout the year and give a place its own unique character, a shifting, breathing, living landscape.

This past weekend, Mt. Hood put on an incredible show for the folks who were lucky enough to experience truly rare early season conditions.  A powerful storm blew through the weekend before, leaving 1-2 feet of snow above 6000 ft, but since that time the weather had been stable and the snowpack had consolidated.  The forecast called for clear skies, moderate temps, and dead calm winds.  On top of that, Timberline Ski Area had just opened for the winter season and was scheduled to run the Palmer lift both days.  Equation = fun!