Magic S Loop Ski Tour — PNW


Post by WildSnow.com blogger | July 10, 2012      

On the fourth of July, Jason Hummel, Andy Traslin, and I completed the “Magic S Loop” above Cascade Pass. Good snow, high mountains, 12 hours out, about 8,000 feet of human powered vert (since we didn’t have to hike the access road). It was a blast!

Backcountry skiing in the North Cascade Mountains

Starting the hike to Cascade Pass as the sun reaches the magic peaks above. Click images to enlarge.

First done in 2007 by Sky Sjue and Dan Helmstadter, this backcountry skiing tour travels through the heart of the Washington Cascade mountains, from Cascade Pass, to Cache Col, to the top of Hurry Up Peak, down the S Glacier, and back to Cascade Pass.

The weather didn’t look promising the night before. Thick fog covered the parking lot. The murk lingered the next morning but we started off anyway. Sure enough, our day of ski mountaineering got better and better. Turned out to be one of my best days of the season — I’ll just let a few of my photos speak for the trip.

Backcountry skiing in the North Cascade Mountains

Traversing toward Cache Col

Backcountry skiing in the North Cascade Mountains

Jason hiking toward the top of Hurry Up Peak

Andy Backcountry skiing on Hurry Up Peak in the Cascade Mountains

Andy skiing down the S Glacier

Check out Sky’s account of his inaugural S-Loop in 2007.


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Comments

10 Responses to “Magic S Loop Ski Tour — PNW”

  1. Jack July 10th, 2012 11:48 am

    Wow! 10k feet in 12 hours? Holey Moley, I would be happy to be able to do 1/2 that.

  2. Chuck July 10th, 2012 12:11 pm

    Good on you, Louie, for keeping the ski stoke going!

  3. Lou July 10th, 2012 12:46 pm

    Jack, I think they did more around 8,000 plus, but still, they nailed the whole thing quite fast, and that’s with messing around with photography the whole time.

  4. Lisa July 10th, 2012 2:17 pm

    Love the photo of Jason hiking to the top of Hurry Up.

  5. Mary July 10th, 2012 2:23 pm

    Beautiful photographs! I put Cascade Pass on my list of places I want to ski. Thanks for the info.

  6. Andy Traslin July 11th, 2012 12:08 am

    Great trip, I was expecting to be walking for 5 miles. It was a bonus to be skinning after 5 minutes of wrestlng with slide alder. Varied and rugged terrain. Some of the best views I’ve scene in the North Cascades.

  7. Sky July 11th, 2012 8:59 am

    Glad you did it! That’s still one of my favorite tours. Spectacular scenery, a good amount of travel and a couple of first-class descents!

  8. Jason Hummel July 11th, 2012 5:34 pm

    Awesome trip Louie and Andy. We had a blast. I can’t wait to get through my images as well. Super cool trip. BTW, that image on the summit ridge is awesome!!!

  9. Brian Mohr July 15th, 2012 10:09 am

    Looks like a great tour! Thanks for the splash of cool thoughts.

  10. Ritz July 18th, 2012 6:50 am

    Very nice photos. Really speak about your trip.

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