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Mt Spokane 'Sidecountry' Ski

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

It was the second to last day of the season at Mt Spokane a few weeks back and I decided to have a little fun and check out those clearcut couple of hills when looking directly down the terrain park run. I saw on an old park map that this was once labeled "Blanchard Ridge". This area, previously thick forest, was cut the past two summers and I haven't yet seen a track down it.


Looking back at Mt Spokane:




Snags and Corn:




Getting out there was pretty easy, just a short traverse off the ski run and skin up to the top. The skiing was fun, few inches of slush on hardcrust. Overall it was fairly low angle (20-30 degrees?). Getting back from Brickel Creek road to the resort was a bit of a pain. As you can see in the video, it was nearly 2 miles back and not very direct. I think next time I'd be better off skinning back towards my start point instead. Technically you do need a permit to use this land (IEP Company) -- I had one previously for the bike route from Mt Spokane to Twin Lakes.


post #2 of 6

Wow, nice!!

post #3 of 6



post #4 of 6

That hill had a big fire on it about 8 years ago after being logged and it sure is bald. I've never gone through to there but all the old farts around the Mt have.  . It always looks inviting and there are usually a few tracks on there by the weekends.  

There was some talk  of putting a chair on that side and connecting the trails to four and the parking lot which will never happen but would be a great learning area and blue runs. We have enough of those already.


Nice TR Mike.   I did some snowmobile skiing on the Mt last week using water ski ropes to take us up the hills. It was fun up and down but sluggish snow. The stuff in the shade was fast.






Nice photo of the Chair four runs  in the foreground of the mountain The density that peaks near the bottom in the trees. I went into those woods from the Terrain Park side and found hip high snow in the steeper areas the Sunday after the Saturday snowed- in parking lot craziness day. It snowed a couple feet that day was blowing sideways all day.

 That's the best place to go early as it gets tracked fast back there by the rest of us soon after. The line down the middle is Geronimo.  Plake passed over it three times after the backside hikes back up before he couldn't resist and skied that over and over again until he went in.  He digs the bumps, like about ten runs of them. 

post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

Nice, thanks for some of the backstory Garry. I've never seen a ski track down this area only snowshoe, or in previous years snowmobilers.


Here's some info I found on Blanchard Ridge and why it became to be so bald:




Originally it was a commercial thinning operation, which takes only the subdominant, sick, and dying trees and leaves the healthiest and largest dominant species for a later harvest after new seeded trees have taken hold. The ridge would have looked just like the commercial thinning on the next ridge to the northeast were it not for a 100 year wind storm that knocked out 90% of the standing timber just 3 months post harvest.




Just downhill from this area, lie two planned harvests that are also in full view of the ski slopes. Root rot, a native fungus in

the soil, is starting to take a heavy toll on the dominant Douglas Fir and Grand Fir in both areas. Because in earlier times, only the

White Pine and larch were logged, there is an overabundance of Douglas Fir and Grand Fir.


One of those harvests was just last summer all the way down to Brickel Creek Road (3800ft~) where I skied.


Think I'm going to hike up and ski No Alibi or Two Face today after the cold temps last night. Doesn't look like anything new, but maybe a surprise awaits at the top.. Last Wednesday it was snowing pretty good:



post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 

Talked to someone today and indeed this area has been skied plenty. (atleast the top half before the cut last summer)


They call it "Beer Mountain" icon14.gif

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