Mia and Andrei were off the school last week. I took Thursday and Friday off from work as well and we went skiing to both Mt. Crystal and White Pass.
Thursday we went to Mt. Crystal. Actually we were planning on going to White Pass first and since I have not been there I put the destination into my GPS, TomTom. I did not check the resulting route carefully enough. It wanted to take us via Highway 123 and part of it is closed during the winter months which I’m surprised it did not know about. So we arrive at the gate but luckily it is the same route that goes to Crystal so we made a left turn and went to Crystal instead. This particular route was a little different from what I’ve used to got to Crystal before. It used Hwy 169 and then couple of shortcuts to get to Hwy 410. There was almost no traffic so we got there in less than two hours, 1 hour and 40 minutes. Usually it has taken me two hours or little more. It was snowing almost all the time and the snow was great. Mostly flat light so the visiblity was poor but occasionally sun peaked out and visibility was great at those times. Despite the warm weather, I think it was about 32 Fahrenheit degrees or so, the snow was dry and powdery and there was lots of it. Up to your waist at times depending on where you were, lots of fun (and tiring on my legs).
Andrei met his friend when we were on break and they went skiing together for the rest of he day. Mia and I skied together. At some point we had a bite at the Campbell Basin Lodge. You can see from some the pictures we took from inside that there is lots of snow outside the lodge.
On Friday, we then finally made it to White Pass. The weather was great, sunny most of the time. It was pretty cold, about -4 Fahrenheit which is about -20 Celsius degrees. The snow was absolutely great but there was not as much of it compared to Crystal. All the slopes were groomed but you got about a foot of powder on a hard packed snow if you went off the groomed ones a bit. awesome skiing.
The drive there is a bit long, over three hours from Redmond but it was worth it. On a clear day, you can see Mt. Rainier from there but that day there were clouds between White Pass and Rainier. We did get a little peek of it though when the clouds were moving.