Touring at Baker on Memorial Day

Mt Baker, WA (May 28, 2009) – With a monday off and sunny skies, Creative Director Jessie Lu, myself, and Byron Bagwell made for Mt Baker Ski Resort to sample the abundant snowpack and skin into some slushy steeps. Leaving at 8am wasn’t early enough–by the time we began our ascent at 10, the snow was already softening, and we encountered a group of kids trying to hit the leftover jump from the Sesh Up in sticky snow conditions.


After a brief lunch break, we skinned to the base of table mountain, and decided to drop into rider’s left of the line known as “Little AK”–a thousand-plus feet of steeps in a gully that had been shaded most of the morning.


Jessie Lu skins up.


Byron and Colin at the top of the line with Shuksan in the background.


The line began with a blind roll into a tight face…


…Jessie Lu drops in…


…then traverses to the flank on the right and the safety of a small ridge. Wet sloughs were flowing with every turn, with the top foot or so melted out. Stopping on a convexity, a small wet slab released as well.


The skin out with our line just right of the lower rock prow in the distance.


And Byron gets mountain fresh in the parking lot.

The tour took around 3.5 hours and was pretty mellow going under the hot sun–t-shirt weather with a thick snowpack. Baker should hold snow in the higher reaches for some time to come, along with the rest of Cascadia; there’s no better time than the present to get out your split and go for a walk in the mountains.


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