May 15-16, 2004, Baker skiing

Short version: Russ, Adam, Dan, and I skiied on the lower slopes of Baker, deciding not to attempt to reach the cloud-covered summit. A good time was had by all.

Russ: Interested in climbing Baker via N. Ridge, then return by skiing the Coleman?
Dan: ...try for another weekend...?
Ania: ...not an option. I got a beautiful red manicure to match my skis, painted my toenails, and even got lipstick and ribbons to match.

Skiing with three good looking men, I had to make sure my nails and lipstick were perfect.

Saturday morning, we left Seattle. At noon, we left the trailhead. The road was blocked by snow about a half mile before the trailhead, so we added our car to the long line already parked there. We hiked about half a mile to the trailhead. Russ had read that it was more direct to follow the gulley behind the outhouse, but we didn't see a path and were wary of just taking off bushwhacking, so we started up the trail. After much traversing and climbing of steep snowy slopes, we arrived at a flattish spot from where we could see the Colman-Deming glacier. It was just starting to rain a bit. We put up our tents and enjoyed cheese, crackers, vodka, Cognac, and Amarula.

In the tent. We found all 26 letters of the alphabet on various labels on gear and clothing.

Sunday 3am: Clouds covered the summit. We decided not to do the North Ridge, since finding our way across the flat summit and then finding the Roman Wall rather than a cliff could be sketchy in a white-out.

Sunday 5:30am: We got up and skiied up the ridge, towards the regular route up Baker. As we began to cross through the fairly abrupt cloud ceiling, we decided summiting would be less fun than enjoying the perfect snow conditions so we enjoyed a fabulous ski back to camp.

Dan pointing at summit. We could see as much of it as you can.

We leisurely packed up camp and skiied back down, this time down the recommended gulley that puts you behind the outhouse. The snow was soft and fun, and swerving through the trees and around holes was a blast. We kept our skis on as long as unreasonably possible. For future trips, this is definitely a more direct approach than the trail, if you can know where to go.

The gulley.

Adam and Russ skiing moss.

© Anna Mitros
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