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Skiing and Backpacking Around Crater Lake


Aaron Zagrodnick
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Aaron Zagrodnick

One-by-one we traversed the narrow cut in the cliff, careful to lean to the right in case we slipped – the steep drop-off on our left plunged over a hundred feet to the valley floor. The sun had already set behind the western Cascades, painting the sky a burning red but leaving our trail in rapidly increasing darkness. That we were struggling to remain upright on our cross-country skis on even the slightest descent made each step even more nerve-racking. By the time we traversed the top of the cliff and returned to open terrain, there was no question of setting up camp immediately and starting on dinner in the dark. The experience was a far cry from the relaxed ski tour around Crater Lake that we had planned...

In Issue 34 @mgraw recounts this skiing and backpacking trip around Crater Lake in Oregon:

Going Long: Skiing around Crater Lake's Rim

Backpacking and Skiing Around Crater Lake

Issue 34 Page 1

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Aaron Zagrodnick

Great to hear you liked the way it all turned out....great photos and write-up!

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  • 1 year later...

Great trip Aaron. 

A friend of mine who has plenty of experience in winter mountaineering,  made an attempt at a similar trip.  They got several feet of really wet snow over a couple of days and had a hard time making any progress in unbroken Cascadian mashed potato snow.  They used up their food and eventually came out in a helicopter.  It can be an unforgiving environment.  I remember being there on Labor Day , Sept 6 and getting some serious snow. 

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