January 9, Saturday: As Bob noted it was a crowded zoo at Santiam Pass last weekend. Fiona and I were among the lucky skiers who left early (before 7am) and reached the Pass before the worst of the crunch. But there was still a traffic jam on the Hwy beginning at Hogg Rock and 50 cars in Santiam SnoPark at 9am when we grabbed two of the rapidly vanishing spaces. Fortunately, the Wilderness north of the Pass has plenty of space. Within a quarter mile we left the crowds behind and were making fresh tracks in new snow with sunny skies and beautiful views in all directions. During the day we saw tracks on the slopes and skiers in the distance, but never met anyone on the trail until the last quarter mile back to the SnoPark. To enjoy the best views we skied northeast across the Cascade crest to a point overlooking Square Lake, then wandered north to Martin and Booth Lakes below Three Fingered Jack before climbing back over the crest and enjoying a smooth downhill run to the SnoPark. Beautiful weather, beautiful views and beautiful skiing–one of the lucky days. –by Jim Todd

1/9/21: Booth Lake and Black Butte photo by: Fiona Couperthwaite

1/9/21: Booth Lake and Black Butte photo by: Fiona Couperthwaite

1 thought on “TOUR REPORT

  1. I was @ Ray Benson Sunday. Since the Sunday after Christmas was a nightmare, I arrived about 8:30. Things moved along nicely. The snow was great once I got out a ways on the south loop. I was at Island Shelter by 10:30. Things got dicey on the North trail back to the car. There had been so many snow shoes, the trail skied like a big Icey sidewalk. But still an incredible sunny day. My biggest surprise on this trip was the outhouse is gone at the Detroit Ranger station. I had to hurry to downtown Detroit.


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