|Temperature: 71.1°F | Humidity: 70% | Pressure: 29.98in (Steady) | Conditions: Smoke | Wind Direction: SSE | Wind Speed: 0mph|
WINTER FUN IN THE SNOW JUST AROUND CORNER
November 01, 2008
(STEVENS PASS, WA) -- Have you ever wanted to learn how to snowshoe so you can get out into the back country and enjoy some gorgeous winter scenery in the Cascades? You can learn how with guided snowshoe walks at Stevens Pass, just east of Skykomish on U.S. Highway 2.
The winter walks, provided by the Skykomish Ranger District of the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, will take place every Saturday (Novice & Intermediate) and Sunday (Challenging) from January 5th through March 30th.
Two different hikes will be offered on Saturday and one on Sunday. A novice Saturday session begins at 10:00 a.m. with an indoor slide show at the USFS Guard Station that focuses on the history of Stevens Pass, including the 1910 Wellington avalanche disaster.
Visitors are then taken on a 1½ mile snowshoe walk that meanders up the richly historic and scenic Pacific Crest Trail. Children under the age of six cannot be accommodated on this one. This program session generally lasts 1½ – 2 hours.
An intermediate session is held Saturday afternoons. This 2-mile loop in Mill Valley rambles through forest groves, with spectacular views of cascading Mill Creek and Nason Ridge. Ranger talks will focus on winter ecology and snowshoeing techniques. Children under the age of 10 cannot be accommodated.
Interested participants will meet in the Stevens Pass Nordic Center parking lot at 1:00 p.m. Total time: 2 to 2 ½ hrs. Group size is limited to 12 people. In the event of poor snow conditions, the guide reserves the right to change the trip destination.
Reservations can be made the Wednesday through Friday before the date of the outing. Snowshoes are provided for all participants in the walks, but bring your own poles. To offset the costs of the program a donation of $10 per person is suggested. Participants are responsible to dress appropriately for the weather. Layered clothing and clothes that insulate the body when wet are encouraged. Hats, gloves, and sturdy, waterproof boots (to wear in snowshoes) are a must.
Stevens Pass Resort offers a transit shuttle from Mountain View Chevron in Sultan that drops visitors in front of the Forest Service Guard Station. From there, those heading to the Nordic Center can board a free van service. Please review the Stevens Pass website (http://www.stevenspass.com/) for Sultan Shuttle schedule and costs.
For more information about the snowshoe program in general call the Skykomish Ranger District at (360) 677-2414, Wednesday - Friday from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.