Please see the ski school page for complete information
NOAA’s prognostication of copious amounts of snow and winter weather warning turned out to be exaggerated. It is piling up though and with possible worsening condition Jim Todd and I decided to chance it. ODOT had not plowed any of the snow parks and the berm they left in front was more than we wanted to tackle. Little Nash had a bunch of snow mobile trucks and trailers packing the lot for their rigs and that also didn’t seem like a good place for us. So that left Potato Hill. There were some snow shoers there but we were first out to set some track. Trail breaking was shin to knee deep as we climbed the hill and dropped down to the Hash Brown loop and road to Little Nash. We explored around under the large Douglas fir where the accumulation was a little less and then made our way back in our tracks, continued up a short ways in the snow shoe track before deciding we had sufficient work out. The downhill was typical Potato Hill, too fast in the track, too slow out of it. As we came down to Maxwell there had been enough vehicles pushing thru the berm that we stopped and did another hour ski there. Pretty nice ski. Overall there was probably a total of and inch of new snow all day. ODOT did finally clear a path into the parking lot and Big Springs looked to be cleared better yet. Still nothing pushed out at Big Meadow Road. As the storms taper off and the snow consolidates, we could be in for some great skiing. Get out there.
****Remember: Our meetings are shifting back to the 2nd Tuesday of the month for the remainder of the season****
Monthly Meeting, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 7:00 pm at Pringle Hall, 606 Church St SEPROGRAM
Bruce Moffat of the Central Oregon Avalanche Association will give an update of their popular “Know Before You Go” avalanche awareness program. Central Oregon Avalanche Association is a non-profit focused on avalanche awareness and education. Their long-term goal is an avalanche forecasting service for the central Cascades. Check out their website at http://www.coavalanche.org. Bruce’s program will have important information for anyone traveling the mountains in winter; please join us.
Please renew your membership for the 2019-2020 season. For only $20 you receive access to all the inside club news, Ski School, Overnight Trips and the satisfaction of supporting our efforts to promote and improve cross-country skiing for everyone. You can renew at our monthly meetings or download a renewal form at oncwillamette.org/membership. Join us for a great season on the snow. Note: an updated password for the club’s website will be sent to all current members before the February news is posted.
January 15: Salem Summit Co., 240 Commercial St NE, is hosting an Introduction to Cross-Country Skiing at 6:15 pm. Jim Todd will present a guided tour of the varied and beautiful cross-country skiing in the Central Cascades. From gentle groomed tracks to steep alpine slopes our nearby mountains have it all. Whether you are a first time skier or an accomplished ski mountaineer–come see what the Central Cascades have to offer! January 16: If you miss it on Jan. 15, Jim Todd will present “Cross country-Skiing in the Central Cascades” at Keizer REI, at 6:00 pm. From gentle groomed tracks to steep alpine slopes our nearby mountains have it all. Whether you are a first time skier or an accomplished ski mountaineer–come see what the Central Cascades have to offer! You can sign up for this program at REI’s Events webpage: https://www.rei.com/events/94826/cross-country-skiingsnowshoe-destinations-central-cascades/266754 SKI SCHOOL: tentative date is Sat., Jan. 25, 2020, at Hoodoo; with the evening class at Pringle Hall on Tue. Jan. 21. We are still waiting for Hoodoo to confirm the date and prices. This information will be posted as soon as it is available. Keep checking for updates.
The Willamette Chapter will once again sell the cheapest Sno-Park permits in town. The annual permits will be sold to you at cost ($25) at the Nov. and Dec. meetings. Be the first on your block to have one pasted in your car window.
The Willamette Chapter has an active volunteer program assisting the Forest Service with ski trail clearing and marking, as well as shelter construction, maintenance and firewood stocking. Thank you volunteers! Please call Mark Olson (503-559-0728) or Jim Todd (503-378-7003) for more information or to sign up for one of our projects.
During the ski season Willamette Chapter members help the Forest Service maintain and improve ski trails by reporting trail and shelter conditions. Please help the Deschutes and Willamette National Forests use their limited resources efficiently by sending a Nordic Trail Report when you ski their marked trails. “High Cascades Forest Volunteers” records volunteer activity and reports directly to Forest Service offices. You can access their special Nordic Trail Report form at:
http://www.highcascadesvolunteers.com/WorkReports/WorkReportNordicTrail.html. You can also find the Nordic Trail form by searching for “high cascade volunteers” and going to their website: www.highcascadesvolunteers.com/. From the home page click “HCFV Work Report Form” at the top of left column and then click “Nordic Trail Report” at the bottom of the right column. Fill in the boxes on the form; describe any trail obstructions or problems you encounter; and then click “Submit” at the bottom. Thanks for your help. WEEKEND DAY TOURS Guests are welcome on Willamette Chapter day tours. Please contact the tour leader for details and to ensure the tour matches your interests and skill level. We need more tour leaders for weekend tours; please step up and lead a tour to your favorite destination. If you wish to lead a tour, suggest a tour destination or learn more about tour leading, contact Jim Todd (503w378w7003). The tour schedule is sparse at present due to Holidays and uncertainties about early season snow conditions; more tours will be added as the season progresses. Remember, impromptu tours are always an option. If you yearn for a day on skis phone Jim, one the leaders below or a skier on the weekday list. Connect with your fellow Club members and get out when it snows.January 11, Saturday: A Tour, Santiam Pass area. Contact Pam & Craig Wojcik (503w931w2705). January 11 or 12, Saturday or Sunday: B Tour, Santiam Pass area; location and date depending on snow conditions and group interest. Contact Bob Young (503w621w6626).January 18, Saturday: A Tour, Big Springs, Ray Benson or Hoodoo Nordic—depending on snow conditions. Contact Jim Todd (503w378w7003).January 18, Saturday: B Tour, Potato Hill. Contact Bianca Klar (503w949w9089).
January 25 Ski School at Hoodoo’s Nordic Trails. This is a great opportunity for beginning, novice and intermediate skiers to learn and practice skiing skills. Watch the NEWS for details.
February 1, Saturday: Beginner/A Tour: return trip to Hoodoo’s Nordic tracks or an easy road ski—depending on group interest. Contact Jim Todd (503w378w7003).
February 1 or 2, Saturday or Sunday: B Tour, Santiam Pass area; location and date depending on snow conditions and group interest. Contact Bob Young (503w621w6626).
February 2, Sunday: A Tour, post Ski School tour; location depending on snow conditions and group interest. Contact Jeanne Miller (503w588w0473).
February 8, Saturday: A Tour, Santiam Pass area. Contact Genice Rabe (506w371w6347).
February 8, Saturday: B Tour, Benson/Little Nash traverse—if snow permits. Contact Jim Todd (503w378w7003).
February 15, Saturday: A Tour, location depending on snow conditions. Contact Mark Olson (503w559w0728).
February 16, Sunday: B Tour,
February 22, Saturday: A Tour, Three Creeks area. Contact John Hortsch (503w749w1988).
March 21, Saturday: A/B Tour, John Craig Ski Event at McKenzie Pass. Watch the NEWS for details.
Tour Ratings: A key to the Tour Rating type codes:
Beginner-Easy = Short distances on flat or gentle slopes. Appropriate for first time skiers.
“A” = Easy-Distances up to 5 or 6 miles with a few slopes. Some basic skills are required.-Some of these may not be suitable for 1st time skiers.
“B” = Intermediate or experienced-Distances of 6 to 12 miles or possible elevation gains of 2000 feet . May include some steeper sections. Some downhill skills are required.
“C” = Advanced-Longer with greater elevation gains. Includes both trails and off-trail with frequent steep terrain.
“D” = Expert-Very difficult or long. Possibe back-country travel and/or mountaineering.
The Club encourages car pooling for tours and suggests that riders reimburse the driver 10 cents per mile (total round trip miles).
The Willamette Chapter is sharing ski tours with the Chemeketans again this season. Here is their tour list for 2020. Contact Bruce Moffatt if you have questions or wish to join one of the Chemeketan ski tours.
Chemeketan XC Ski Schedule
Feb. 8th Cross the Crest. An XC ski tour beginning at Santiam SnoPark and crossing the Cascade Crest. Round trip 6-8 miles. Going towards the Booth Lake, Square Lake vicinity. Moderate difficulty. Contact the leader firstname.lastname@example.org
Feb. 22nd Hoodoo Ski Bowl to Potato Hill SnoPark. A moderate ski tour, being comfortable with some moderate downhill sections will make you feel more at ease.
About 4 miles with an alpine feel without the elevation gain. A short and often overlooked, classic ski tour. Contact the leader at email@example.com
Mar. 14th Ski Skills Improvement- Groomed tracks at Hoodoo Ski Bowl. Come on out and get some tips, ski more confidently and comfortably. Brush up on your skills work on your fitness and enjoy the snow. Contact the leader at firstname.lastname@example.org
April 4-6th Hut-to-Hut Tour, Dutchman’s Flat to Three Creeks SnoPark. Sign up now so we can reserve this weekend. Limited to 7 skiers. Ski the backcountry hut system without a heavy pack. Food, sleeping systems, shuttle are included in the price. Enjoy traveling light through spring snow of Central Oregon. Contact the leader at email@example.com
OVER NIGHT TRIPS
Canmore Ski Trip
This is a multiday trip to one of the most scenic areas of the Canadian Rockies. Skiing is at its best later in the winter when we are going since the major storms have past but it is still well below freezing to keep the snow dry for good skiing. All types of skiing ,back country trail, groomed nordic and downhill are just a short drive away from our base location in Canmore (about and hour drive west of Calgary if you fly rather than drive). The local groomed Nordic area, almost within walking distance from condo, offers plenty of challenging trails since it was built for Olympic ski competition. We will spend four nights in Canmore and then one night in northern Idaho for the drive up and another night for the drive back to Salem. Condo type units where we are staying have small but complete kitchens. Both grocery stores and restaurants are numerous in Canmore. For some of us this will be our third or fourth time to Canmore so we think it is well worth the trip for the skiing and the scenery. Leaving Salem on 3/29, returning to Salem on 4/4. Call for more details if you are interested Craig Wojcik 503xx931xx2705.
Note: condos reserved for this trip are full, but other accomodations are available if you swish to join this trip.
Central Oregon Ski Weekend
I am leading a weekend ski trip to a the LaPine Area in February.
We stay at no cost at a large home on the banks of the Deschutes River just west of LaPine. Many local skiing options including the Paulina Lake area as well as Meissner SnoPark (groomed trails) and Dutchman’s Flat near Mt. Bachelor Ski area as well as the groomed trails at Bachelor, to name a few. We can order pizza from a nearby parlor or cook group meals. We have a full service kitchen to prepare meals. We have room for a dozen skiers. The dates are Friday February 21–Sunday February 23.
Mark Olson at 503xx559xx0728 or mark at olson dot us.
Hut-to-Hut ski trip from Dutchman Flats to Three Creeks SnoPark, April 4-6. See Chemeketan XC Schedule above for details.
SKI TOUR REPORT
January 3, Friday: when Bianca, Bob, Beth, Kurt and I arrived at Ray Benson the snow surface was a glaze of ice. But our skis cut through and gave a little grip so we headed out the North Loop. The thin snow required careful maneuvering around rocks and over logs, but the glide was great. We picked up the Circle Lake trail and followed it to Island Junction shelter for lunch; then continued to Brandenburg shelter before finding an off-trail route back to the SnoPark. Just possibly the best ski tour ever on a 6″ snowpack!