P. O. Box 181

Salem, OR  97308


March 2022


    Under current COVID-19 safety guidelines it is possible to resume the club’s scheduled ski tours.  However, individual members should assess their risk carefully before deciding whether to ski with a group.  We are responsible for our own safety.  No one should participate in a club tour if they have symptoms that might indicate Coronavirus infection or if they have had close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.  The Willamette Chapter will require everyone to be vaccinated to participate in club tours.  Tour leaders may require proof of vaccination.  Carpooling to the trailhead is an individual choice.  Those who carpool should wear face coverings as a precaution.  Tourers should maintain 6’ social distance at all times and wear face coverings when social distancing is not possible.

    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 (503x378x7003).  Remember, impromptu tours are always an option.  If you yearn for a day on skis, phone Jim or a skier on the roster.  Connect with your fellow Club members and get out when it snows.

March 5 or 6, Saturday or Sunday:  A Tour, best snow in Santiam Pass area.  Contact John Hortsch (503x507x5727).

March 5 or 6, Saturday or Sunday:  B Tour, date and location depending on weather conditions and group interest.  Contact Bob Young (503x621x6626‬).

March 12, Saturday:  B Tour,  Santiam Pass area, location depending on group interest.  Contact Jim Todd (503x378x7003).

March 13, Sunday:  A Tour, Santiam Pass area.  Contact Jeanne Miller (503x 588×0473‬).

March 19, Saturday:  A or B Tour, John Craig Memorial Ski Event at McKenzie Pass.  Tour or race from the Sisters snowgate on Hwy 242 to Dee Wright Observatory and back; the route should be groomed.  Details and a link for sign-up are attached below.  

March 26 or Saturday or Sunday:   A or B Tour, depending on snow conditions and group interest.  Contact Jim Todd (503x378x7003).

April 2 or 3, Saturday or Sunday: B Tour, date and location depending on snow and group interest.  Contact Bob Young (503x621x6626‬).

Tour Ratings: A key to the Tour Rating 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; 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 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; possible backcountry travel and/or ski mountaineering. 


    Why not break the shackles that bind you to the calendar this season?  Try a mid-week tour.  Contact one of the enthusiasts below and arrange an escape from routine.  If you want to be added to this list, send your phone and email to Jim Todd, and we’ll include it in the next Newsletter.   Likewise, contact Jim, if you want your name removed for this season.

Weekday skiers:

Bill Caldwell         503x385x6494      wbcaldwell1 at q dot com

Chuck Daellenbach    541x928x4256    daellenbachc at comcast dot net

Frank Hoffman    541x475x0185    hh_tex at msn dot com

Bianca Klar        503x949x9089    bianchiklar at yahoo dot com

Mark Olson        503x559x0728    mark at olson dot us

Foxie Proctor        503x581x0207    foxieproctor at comcast dot net

Denise Sanders    503x859x4597    dsander at wvi dot com

Jeff Starr        503x851x8403    jeffstarr3 at gmail dot com

Jim Todd        503x378x7003    toddwac18 at gmail dot com

Jerry Vessello        503x931x6344‬    jvess at comcast dot net

Craig Wojcik        503x931x2705‬    ccwojcik09 at comcast dot net

Pam Wojcik        971x312x3984    pjwojcik09 at comcast dot net

Bob Young        503x621x6626    arch.byoung at gmail dot com


Ray Benson/Little Nash Traverse, a tale of two tours. by Jim Todd

    February 12, Saturday:  where was everybody?  Ron and I were the only skiers to turn out on the scheduled date for this tour—perhaps understandable since three weeks of freeze/thaw left the snow surface frozen like concrete.  But being diehards we headed for the Pass, figuring there was bound to be skiing somewhere.  And in fact we discovered fine skiing on roads groomed by Mt. Jefferson Snowmobile Club—smooth, even surfaces and super glide.  Plus, icy conditions seem to be a deterrent for snowmobiles, too.  We had the trails nearly to ourselves.  Up until the final minutes in the afternoon we had seen more skiers (5) than snowmobiles.  So Ron and I rambled the roads between Hayrick, Big Lake and Sand Mountain in peace.  By afternoon, as the snow softened we even did some off trail exploring and discovered a bare hill with great views of Sand Mountain, Mt. Washington and the Three Sisters.  It was a good day—even without the traverse.

photo by Jim Todd

2/12/22:  Sand Mountain                       

2/12/22: Mt. Washington, photo by Jim Todd

    February 17, Thursday:  what a difference five days (and four inches of new snow) makes.  With sunny skies and fresh powder Bob, Chuck, Frank, Jerry and Kim were quick to join me for a week day run on this great route.  After meeting at Little Nash and setting up the car shuttle we skied out of Ray Benson on the South Loop, turned west to cross Big Meadows Rd. and followed the groomed snowmobile route around the south side of Hayrick, then hit the best part—off trail navigation around the south and west slopes of Hoodoo.  The snow was a bit sticky by this time, but the skiing was still pleasant and the views were great.  We ended with a run down Hash Brown Loop and Nash Potato trail on increasingly soggy, but still decent snow.  It was great to sqeeze this classic tour into a narrow window of clear weather and unfrozen snow.  And about that powder:  yes, it was Pacific Coast powder and not Rocky Mountain powder; and true it only lasted for an hour before beginning to clump.  But it was as close as we’re likely to get to the real thing.  Just get out early and ski it like you find it.

2/17/22: photo by Jim Todd
2/17/22: photo by Frank Hoffman

Big Springs
by Jeff Starr

    February 17, Thursday:  Conditions were decent at Big Springs SP after the recent snowfall. Bill and I had the snowmobile route from the SP to Park Creek to ourselves. There’s no evidence of any snowmobiles or skiers having used the route recently, but the roads are free of downed trees. Snow depth is between 2 – 3 feet. The snow was adequately soft on the surface and there was minimal breakable crust.

2/17/22: Park Creek – photo by Bill Nelson.

Almost Santiam Lake:
by Jim Todd

    February 26, Saturday:  why are club members going to Texas, New Mexico, California, even Bend when there is snow on Santiam Pass?  Anna and I were the only skiers to turn out for this annual tour.  But in spite of the shortage of trail breakers we made it up the Skyline trail to the head of Lost Lake Creek (a mile short of Santiam Lake) before running short of time and heading back to Santiam SnoPark.  The downhill run was good and so were the views.

2/26/2022: skiing the Skyline Trail photo by Jim Todd


    The Willamette Chapter has an active volunteer program assisting the Forest Service with ski trail clearing and marking; shelter construction and maintenance; and firewood stocking.  Thank you volunteers!  If you have questions about out volunteer projects or would like to join one, contact Mark Olson (503x559x0728) or Jim Todd (503x378x7003).

    The Deschutes and Willamette National Forests do 
essential work keeping our ski trails open, marked and 
signed through the winter; but they are desperately short
 of winter recreation staff. We can help the m
use their limited resources efficiently by sending a Trail Report whenever we ski the marked trails. “Cascade Volunteers” records volunteer activity
 and reports directly to Forest Service offices.
You can access their Trail Report form at:  https://cascadevols.org/usfs-work-report/.  (Note:  the form requires a trail number, but our ski trails are not numbered; just enter any digits in the “Trail Number” field, then describe the trail in the “Trail Name” field).  You can also report your observations by sending an email to Jim Todd:  toddwac18 at gmail dot com.


    Olympics:  as expected most cross country medals were won by skiers from Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia.  Therese Johaug of Norway was the biggest winner with gold medals in Skiathon, 10K Classic and 30K Freestyle.  Notable successes by “outsiders” included a silver medal in 4x5K relay and gold in Team Sprint by the German women’s team and, especially, a bronze in Freestyle Sprint and silver in 30K freestyle by US skier Jessie Diggins. 

For all the details of Olympic cross country skiing visit https://olympics.com/en/beijing-2022/

    Paralympics:  cross country events included distance and sprint races for sitting standing and visually impaired skiers.  This year Russia field the largest group of cross country skiers and won the most medals.  US medal winners were Daniel Cnossen with a bronze in the Sitting Distance race and Oksana Masters with gold medals in the Sitting Distance and Spring races.  For all the details of Paralympic cross country skiing visit https://www.paralympic.org/beijing-2022


           The Willamette Chapter will not sell Sno Park permits in the absence of our regular monthly meetings.  SnoPark permits may be purchased online at the Oregon DMV: https://dmv2u.oregon.gov/eServices/_/.  Annual permits purchased directly from DMV cost $25—no handling fee.  The process takes only a few minutes and includes a downloadable copy you can print and use immediately while waiting for your permit to arrive in the mail.  Buy a permit and support SnoPark plowing.

The Newsletter now includes an Announcement Section. There members can post ski related items for sale, cross-country related questions, inquiries about conditions and suggestions for ski trips. Please send your announcements to Bob, Jim or Denise for inclusion in the Newsletter. Another good place for these items is on the website, ONCWillamette.org

    1.  Jeff Starr (503x581x8403) has a pair of Garmont Excursion 3-pin boots for sale.  They are Euro size 26.5, in good condition, for $40. 

2020-2021 OFFICERS & BOARD MEMBERS: Available President

Jeanne Miller Vice President

Bob Young Treasurer & Membership

Denise Sanders Webmeister

Genice Rabe Newsletter Editor

Jim Todd Day Tour Chair

David Forkner ONC State Board Rep & Board Member

Pam Wojcik Overnight Trip Coordinator & Board Member

Mark Olson Volunteer Coordinator & Board Member

Christine Young Board Member

Available Board Member

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