Sahale Glacier, North Cascades NP 6-2016

cascades skiOur Sahale Arm ski touring trip was amazing.  As for the trip itself. The trail is a beautiful grade of switchbacks to Cascade Pass. As a long distance hiker you learn to really appreciate good trail. Combine that with huge granite walls of hanging glaciers, cascading waterfalls, and views of the Cascade River headwaters, the journey is splendid! The trail itself is almost snow free now (June 2016) until you get to Cascade Pass. There you can easily walk from Cascade Pass via the Sahale Arm or ski tour to Glacier Camp. In case you missed it Backpacker Magazine has an amazing photo from that exact spot in the current issue. From Glacier Camp the ski tour was a fairly simple 1000ft tour to the peak. The last 60 feet is steep and easier just to boot pack. Lots of climbers doing the last pitch to the summit and rappelling back to where I was chillin’ and taking in the views, and thinking about skiing (not snowboarding). Kam and Steve free climbed to the summit. There’s a few moves with exposure, and I am no rock climber. The snow was very soft making it easy for the skis to bite into the snow, that and a bit of encouragement from Steve, I instantly regained my confidence. It is certainly one of the most breath taking ski descents in the Northwest, many say that it’s the best view of the North Cascades. I believe it! One last thing.  You don’t have to be a crazy drunk skier willing to hike 10 miles with skis, or hardcore climber trying to climb the peak in under one day. The views are the same if you just hike the trail. Go see it for yourself! Here are a few of my favorite shots from our trip…