Elmo & Rachael do the Royal Basin

14 08 2015

 Andres was able to join Rachael and me for a quick overnighter to the Royal Basin. We did the 7 mile hike in, set up camp, then hiked a mile or so to the upper tarn to do some recon for future trips. The Olympics did not disappoint with more amazing views & stunning scenery.

This is what happens when you try and take a nice picture of your friends…..

A & R Royal Basin

 Rachael hiking towards the upper tarn.

Rachael Royal Basin

Rae Royal Basin


Upper Tarn.

upper tarn

Andres hiking above upper tarn


Andres testing his rock climbing skills on chunky choss.

rock climbing

Andres above upper tarn

Deer were pretty abundant in the area. Mom with twins.

deer & twins



Elmo (and Andres) Ski Mount Rainier

3 06 2013

I finally made it to Seattle to ski with Andres! Somehow, I lucked out on the weather and missed a cloudy/rainy weekend in AK for a hot, sunny weekend in Washington!

mt rainier

The first day we decided to ski the Interglacier on Mt. Rainier. With approximately a 4700ish ft. elevation gain to 9000 ft. climbing it kicked my sea level butt. We started the hike in the forest, clouds obscuring the mountain tops. We strapped the skis on our backs for the first 3+ miles, until there was enough snow to skin to the 9000 ft. level where we skied down from.


Once we popped out of the trees the clouds started to lift and we got our first glimpse of Mt. Rainier. As we continued up the glacier, the weather improved the entire way to blue skies, sunshine, and really, really warm temps. I got burnt to a crisp despite the loads of sunscreen I kept reapplying.

Fresh snow and lots of wet slides on the Interglacier.


Andres with Mt. Rainier.

Andres summit mt rainier

andres ski2

Beautiful views of the Cascades as far as the eye can see. andres interglacier

Sense of scale. Andres in the right corner headed down the glacier.sense of scale

The finest sunglasses that Safeway has to offer 🙂 Andres rocking the Hannah Montana sunglasses and me with Mt. Rainier behind us.

me & Andres

The next day we headed to the Camp Muir side of the mountain. Holy crowds of people!!! We brought Elmo with us to the circus 🙂

elmo skins

The weather started out great, but by the time we got up on the mountain to 8,000 ft. the clouds rolled in, making flat light and obscuring all detail on the mountain. Instead of skiing the chutes, I decided to take it easy and just ski the way we came up-I was nervous about re-injuring my ankle and didn’t want to be out for most of the summer.

Elmo skis!

elmo skis

I had a blast in Washington! It was awesome to spend time in the mountains again with Andres and hang out with Leanne in the city. I’m lucky to have such great friends~I’m looking forward to my next trip to Seattle!

Roadtrip-Anc to Pdx! Old school friends, skiing, & the brew tour.

23 09 2010

Greg and I left town-a little late, on Greg time :)-it was a gorgeous fall day.  The colors were brilliant and the sun was shining-a rarity this summer. We had a great drive down-perfect weather, lots of black bears (although mostly at night), and only one casuality-I killed a bunny rabbit in the Yukon *tear*.

We managed to drive about 2600 +/- miles in 3 days…….

Long Lake, Alaska

Greg soaking in the autumn sunshine on the way to Glennallen.

Driving into the sunset near Tok.

Sunrise in the Yukon.

Cassiar Highway, British Columbia

Andres came down to Portland from Seattle to show me September skiing in the Northwest.  He was awesome & let me beat up his equipment on the rocks 🙂  First we headed to Mt. Hood in Oregon and hiked and skied at Timberline. The volcano moonscape of Mt. Hood was beautiful-and-so different from the snow and ice covered volcanoes I’m used to seeing in Alaska.

Andres with Mt. Hood

Andres & me.

Me with Mt. Hood in the background.

Andres headed down.

The next day we headed up to Mt. Adams. Another volcano, but completely different landscape.

There was still plenty of flowers out.

Ancient skier’s pueblo.


It was a beautiful, sunny hike up. Until, that is, we hit the upper Crescent Glacier. The clouds rolled in and left us with little visibility, cancelling our plans of skiing some chutes off the summit or the Manzama Glacier.  Also, like gorillas in the midst, some forest service rangers magically appeared and ticketed us for hiking above 7,000 ft. without a permit.  Seriously??? Apparently, it costs $15 to hike above 7,000 ft. in Washington & Oregon.  But since we didn’t get a permit (the ranger station so convienently located 35-45 minutes away), it was a $75 ticket.  I’ll stay in Alaska, where hiking is still free-thanks.  We ended up just skiing the Crescent which was mostly sunpocketed-a great difference from the groomed spring ski like run at the resort the day earlier. As soon as we started hiking down heavy rains soaked us reminding us we were in the Northwest.

Greg and I got to have dinner with Colleen & Jim at Montage-it was fabulous with interesting drinks to match! It was great to see them again!

Saturday Greg took me downtown Portland on the Max-a lightrail system that cruises around town.  We checked out a few Portland institutions- Powell’s, Pioneer Square, the Chinese Gardens, the Saturday Market, and attempted to go to Voodoo Donuts-but was unwilling to stand in line for 45 minutes for a donut-even if it was maple bacon.  It poured rain on us most of the day, but it was still fun walking around checking out the different sights.


Wendi and Greg at Walking Man Brewery.

My last day in Portland was a beautiful sunny day-perfect day for a brew tour!

I had a beautiful road trip, great time exploring and skiing the NW volcanoes, and most importantly, spending time with good friends!  It was a quick week, but great to be able to spend lots of time with Greg & his family, spend time in the mountains with Andres, and to hook up with Colleen & Jim, and Mike & Keri!

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