Pacific Northwest Ski blog (and a few other places!)

Lots or reports from skiing around the Pacific Northwest, with some East Coast excursions thrown in for good measure

La Nina deserts the Northwest in January

January 2011 was the strongest La Nina reading in decades. Unfortunately, the old girl seems to have decided to park her butt in warmer climes, dumping massive amounts of rain on Australia in the process. Those goddamn Latina chicks, always in search of sunshine šŸ˜‰

This left a very mixed bag of ski conditions around the Pacific Northwest. We got a decent day in at Mission before the 2nd Pineapple Express of winter deluged the Cascades with enough rain to dampen even a Sean Hannity rant. The following weekend brought 6 inches of heavy-ish pow to Silver Mountain on the Saturday, and the soft untracked remnants and cold conditions made Sunday much better than an average sloppy seconds day.

The month ended with sunshine, cold and fortunately a few inches of new snow at Crystal. In 3 days, the conditions went from slick, ‘only fools leave groomers’ hardpack to a soft, creamy 3 inch layer of fresh. Good enough to spend most of the weekend exploring the wondrous, steep terrain off the Northway chair. It’s even wilder out there than I thought, like a shopping expedition with Lyndsay Lohan, except easier to get away with the booty. The best inbounds terrain I know of on the West Coast, north of Squaw and south of Whistler, that is. Epic stuff.

Mission Ridge – 10,200m

Silver Mt – 7700m, 7300m

Crystal Mt – 8300m, 9200m, 7800m

Season totals: 28 days, 10 powder days, 225,700m vertical

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One response to “La Nina deserts the Northwest in January

  1. kimkircher February 22, 2011 at 6:18 am

    Great blog. I love your pictures too. I agree that Crystal’s Northway Chair rocks, but then again I’m partial.
    Best,
    Kim Kircher

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