SNOWSHOEING (PART 1): PACIFIC NORTHWEST

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Steven started it; it is all his fault. He bought a pair of snowshoes in a thrift store on the Oregon Coast last summer. I hit an REI sale and got a new pair (note: Costco has a set of ‘shoes with poles for $60). They are so easy to put on/off and throw in the trunk. Just jump out for a brief snow hike on any unplowed snowy road. Fortunately, snowy roads are in abundance this El Nino climate year.

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Our vision was to “Shoe” all the major west coast volcanoes this Winter. We started with a low elevation hike on Mt. Shasta, Steven’s first time on snowshoes….surprise and elation….and a tiny bit of snow. Yet that is one of the best features about ‘shoeing; you can hike around in a bare cover of white stuff that is too thin a cover for cross country skiing.

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We bought our California/Oregon Sno-Park Pass and tried for Mt. Ashland the next day, but en route, a tree fell down, blocking our pursuit of the snowiest trail. We vowed to return and we did on the Southbound trip. So many happy snow dogs on this trail as almost every skier and ‘shoer had canine companions.

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Our favorite snowshoe spot (so far…) in the Pacific Northwest was the end of the North Cascade Highway, where the pass is closed for the Winter, leaving a skier and ‘shoer paradise!

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We haven’t yet hit the Olympic Mountains (dawn view from our friend Sara’s Phinney Ridge home in Seattle which we get to house/cat sit several times a year)…

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…nor have we ‘shoed our all-time favorite Mt. Ranier (icy cold and clear that week in Seattle).

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We will be back as the Pacific Northwest is so full of great trails for snowshoeing. We even had a snowshoe just to go down Chris and ‘Chelle’s driveway in Portland to get the morning paper! The only downside was the need to put on chains just to get our motor home down their driveway. Good practice, right?

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But the nuthatches and chickadees at their feeders loved it!

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About Sally

A Studio Artist and painter trained at Stanford university, Sally has since then graduated from a long career as an Attorney with the Public Defender, and returned to painting. Living in Mexico with her son for a year, they adopted a feral dog, Lety. Sally's son left for college and their dog adopted her new best friend, Steven.

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