is less than an hour east of Seattle on I-90.
The elevation of snoqualmie pass at the highway is 3022 ft. the base area is a little higher, but not a whole lot. Tongue-in-cheek names for the area include "Sno-Crummy" and "Rain-qualmie" Alpental has 2200 ft of vert.
Alpental is by far the steepest of the little areas up at snoq.pass. Don't let the size and in bounds terrain fool you. It had me fooled for years until I went with a guy who grew up there. Hook up with a local who knows the area and you can be taken on a ride that includes plenty of opportunity for air time, steeps and big, picturesque slopes.
Alpental will provide you with that 80 footer you are looking for (was that u?)
Northwest snow has a way of compacting underneath a person on landing that makes the snow seem deeper than it is.
On the other hand it is a little place, so if you like big areas with a lot of open terrain you'll have to walk more to find it.
In bounds is either marginal groomed stuff or steep bumped out faces or steep bumped out trees. With a short walk or two you can access a lot of long lumpy creek-bed lines a-la Jackon Hole pillow-type terrain, tree skiing striated with cliff bands and even some above-timberline-seeming slopes in large cliff-lined amphitheatres. Walking around outside the area should be done with someone who knows where they are going as the area is a myriad of drainages.
Weather there is a gamble. If your bud knows the ins & outs and can line you up on when to go (the hiking isn't always accesible), go. It'll be fun. Is it worth a drive from CA? Hmm... isn't Salt Lake City closer?
I can't wait 'til it flies.
When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro...
[This message has been edited by Roto (edited September 02, 2001).]</FONT>