Crystal Mountain

Anya getting fresh tracks in Morning Glory bowl

Anya getting fresh tracks in Morning Glory bowl

Although our home ski hill, Crystal Mountain, will be open for spring/summer skiing until at least mid-June, we’re nearing the end of the winter ski season here in the Cascades. Some snow will still fall, of course, but the majority of cold powder days are behind us. Soon the long, slow process of melting the 10+ feet of compacted snow blanketing the mountain.

Judging purely by the numbers, it was a marginally below-average winter: 436″ of snow have fallen to date, shy of our 486″ average. November & December were great, and by Christmas we had a mid-winter snowpack. A prolonged dryish spell in January & February brought the season back down to Earth, and we’ve had sporadic storms since- in typical fashion, March & early April featured some of the season’s best days.

Of course, 436 inches is still a respectable amount of snow, and compared to some other parts of the country we’ve had a decent winter – certainly nothing to complain about. More snow is in the forecast, so we may yet reach our season average.

I’ve written about Crystal in the past, so I won’t go into many details here. Instead, I thought I’d share some of my favorite photos we took there this year. Enjoy.

The Cascades stretch out beyond the top of Northway Chair

The Cascades stretch out beyond the top of Northway Chair

Luscious powder on a perfect day; top of Brand X

Luscious powder on a perfect day; top of Brand X

Classic Cascade tree skiing

Classic Cascade tree skiing

Looking into Mt Rainier Nationa Park

Looking into Mt Rainier National Park

You've gotta love the Cascades

You’ve gotta love the Cascades

Pano on an ideal day, top of Brand X

Panorama of an ideal day, top of Brand X

From Bear Pits

From Bear Pits

Everyone's favorite apres-ski bar, the Snorting Elk Cellar

Everyone’s favorite apres-ski bar, the Snorting Elk Cellar

Northway Peak

Northway Peak

March powder on the Throne

March powder on the Throne

Anya stoked after skiing one of the chutes under Chair 6

Anya stoked after skiing one of the chutes under Chair 6

Anya hikes for her turns

Anya hikes for her turns

Hiking to The Throne

Hiking to The Throne

Ropeline on Grubstake Point / Snorting Elk Bowl

Ropeline on Grubstake Point / Snorting Elk Bowl

Anya on Northway Peak

Anya on Northway Peak

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