Posts tagged: mount spokane
WINTER SPORTS — My recent blog post on the transitions at Mount Spokane State Park indicated the biggest change this seasons is the elimination of the Discover Pass for WINTER vehicle access to the park through March 31.
The handy chart above, courtesy of the Spokane REI store, helps illustrate the change.
Read the story for details.
WINTER SPORTS — This is transition time for nordic skiers and snowshoers at Mount Spokane State Park.
This week: State Park staff was out recently to clear about 50 trees that had blown down on the 60-kilometer cross-country trails system after two feet of snow followed the storm and buried them well. Taking the snowcat out for that job helped pack some of the trails, and Park Manager Steve Christensen went out on his own with the snowmobile groomer to smooth out the trails, although it was too hard-packed to set tracks. The Selkirk Lodge will be opened on Thanksgiving Day, he said. “I've been trying to save a little money on heating it — it costs about $1,000 a month — since there's not that many people up here yet,” he said.
Starting Dec. 1: Official grooming will begin if snow conditions allow. The biggest change this year mostly affects snowshoers. Dec. 1 marks the day that Discover Passes will no longer be valid for parking during the winter season at Mount Spokane, where all vehicles will need a Sno Park Permit in their vehicles EXCEPT at the Mt. Spokane Ski and Snowboard Park official parking when the resort is operating. No parking will be allowed along the roads without a Sno-Park Permit this season.
Lots of other things are gearing up. A good way to stay informed is to Join or Renew a membership with Spokane Nordic and get the club's regular newsletters and email updates. A sampling of this week's updates:
Snowball potluck, Dec. 7
Celebrate the first Saturday of grooming at the Mt. Spokane Cross-Country Ski Park with the Snowball potluck on Dec. 7, assuming conditions cooperate. If it has to be moved later for lack of grooming conditions, we'll let you know through email and Facebook. This is open to ALL skiers. Get to know your fellow skiers and start the season with a full belly. Bring a dish to share for lunch at noon at the Selkirk Lodge. What to bring: Names starting with A-P bring a main Dish; Q-Z bring Dessert.
WinterFest early registration prizes
Even better than Black Friday… register for WinterFest by Dec. 1 and you'll be automatically entered to win an REI backpack. WinterFest is a new event the club is organizing to celebrate muscle-powered winter sports at Mount Spokane.
Kids' skis available
The online ski swap lists a collection of used small kids' gear available at Mountain Gear's retail store in Spokane. You can also find a set of barely-used ski waxes and some booties for your skijoring dog.
Nordic Kids and Youth Rangers
Register for Nordic Kids and the new Youth Rangers program before Dec. 15 to avoid late fees. And invite a friend to get their kid going in lessons!
Adult nordic skiing lessons
Adult lessons are scheduled for all experience levels, skate or classic on Saturdays and Sundays starting Dec. 7. Tweak those skills, and invite that friend or co-worker who's never skied to try out a beginner lesson.
Contact Spokane Nordic by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
TRAILS — The work park staff and volunteers put in building bridges at Mount Spokane this summer and fall is paying off this winter, especially for snowshoers who can easily get across Burping Brook on the trails above the Mount Kit Carson Loop Road.
Holly Weiler of the Spokane Mountaineers and Friends of Mount Spokane State Park volunteered her muscle to build the bridge. On Sunday she used muscle power to enjoy the luxury of easy stream crossings and took time to post this photo.
Weiler also is a member of the Washington Trails Association, which took the lead on building bridges and other trail work in the park this year.
WINTER SPORTS — Snow conditions in the Mount Spokane Cross-Country Skiing Park were ungroomed but excellent for snow shoeing, says Warren Walker, who checked out the area today and snapped this photo of other snowshoers he saw there.
Snowshoeing is allowed around the cross-country trails until grooming starts.
WINTER SPORTS — The 49th annual Ski Swap sponsored by the Mt. Spokane Ski Patrol coming up this weekend, Oct. 26-27, will offer a new feature to the main activity of buying and selling used winter gear — a FREE Learn To Ski Area
Beginner skiers don't have to wait until snow carpets the mountain. They can take their first turns at the Ski Swap.
Mt. Spokane Ski Area will provide skis and boots from Elan, as well as helmets for each participant. Certified instructors will coach beginners through their first turns.
The Learn To Ski Area is FREE to all participants! Minors must bring a parent for supervision.
All participants will receive a coupon for $10 off any beginner lesson at Mt. Spokane Ski and Snowboard Park.
The Learn To Ski area will be open at the Ski Swap on Saturday, Oct. 26, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, Oct. 27, from 9 a.m. to noon.
The Mt. Spokane Ski Patrol Ski Swap is the Pacific Northwest's largest winter sports retailer, featuring new and gently used gear from area shops and individuals.
Visitors to the Ski Swap will receive a FREE Mt. Spokane Thursday non-holiday lift ticket by purchasing advance tickets online at www.skipatrolskiswap.com.
These guests will also receive a $20 Liftopia voucher, and gain early access to booth & vendor spaces at 8:00am Saturday. Shopping begins at 9 a.m. Saturday.
FLY FISHING — Bob Bates, 83, passed away Wednesday, a week after he was at the monthly Inland Empire Fly Fishing Club meeting as curious as ever about the sport.
Bob devoted years to teaching students about fisheries by volunteering to run the public tours at the Spokane Fish Hatchery.
Click here to read about just one of many fisheries-related services Bob enjoyed.
He made the world a better place.
WINTER SPORTS – Snow’s falling in the high country, a sure sign that used gear will be coming out of closets for great deals at annual ski- and winter-gear swaps.
The following fundraisers help raise money for area ski patrols and racing groups:
49 Degrees North Ski Patrol Ski Swap, Northeast Washington Fairgrounds in Colville, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. on Saturday. Register items for sale 6 p.m.-8 p.m. Friday and 6 a.m.-9 a.m. Saturday.
Mount Spokane Ski Patrol Ski Swap (49th annual event) at Spokane County Fair and Expo Center in Spokane Valley, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. on Oct. 26 and 9 a.m.-noon on Oct. 27. Register items for sale from 3 p.m.-8 p.m. on Oct. 25.
Lookout Pass and Silver Mountain ski patrols’ Winter Swap, Kootenai County Fairgrounds on Government Way in Coeur d’Alene, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. on Nov. 2. Register items 3 p.m.-8 p.m. on Nov. 1.
Fitness Fanatics Nordic Ski Sale and Swap specializing in cross-country gear at store, 12425 E. Trent Ave. starting at 9 a.m. on Nov. 2. Register items to sell before 5 p.m. on Nov. 1.
Schweitzer Alpine Racing School Ski Swap at Bonner County Fairgrounds in Sandpoint, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. on Nov. 9. Bring items to sell noon-7 p.m. Nov. 8.
PARKS — The foundation is done and a contractor has put up the walls on the new Smith Gap warming hut for snowshoers and backcountry skiers at Mount Spokane State Park.
Warren D. Walker snapped this photo to document the effort on Sunday.
Steven Christensen, park manager, said it's unlikely the hut will be ready for use this winter, but there's still a possibility. Either way, volunteers will be needed next summer to finish the inside, he said.
WINTER SPORTS — Work is progressing on a hut to serve as a Smith Gap warming shelter for snowshoers and backcountry skiers at Mount Spokane State Park.
It's no surprise that Cris Currie, long-time leader of the Friends of Mount Spokane State Park, is in the thick of the volunteer action. The friends group is looking for a wood stove to install in the hut.
Here's a weekend update with these photos from Currie's wife, Nora Searing:
STATE PARKS — The Friends of Mount Spokane State Park are putting out a plea for someone with building skills to help lead the construction before winter of a yurt for snowshoers and backcountry skiers at the park.
Here's the message:
We are now at a critical point in our 4 year effort to build a new winter shelter for snowshoeing and backcountry skiing at Mt. Spokane, and we need everyone’s help. A grant for materials has been secured from the Johnston-Fix Foundation and additional financial support is available from the Friends of Mt. Spokane. The plans have been approved and park staff expect to have the foundation for the hut finished by the middle of next week. The location is Smith Gap. Unfortunately, the volunteer retired contractor we had lined up to lead the project is no longer available and we need to replace him. IF we can find a replacement within the next couple of weeks, and if we can find 3 or 4 committed volunteers who can devote several days a week to the project, we could at least get the exterior done this season. If not, we will do our best to protect the foundation over the winter and resume in June.So, I would like to ask everyone if they happen to know a retired or semi-retired builder/contractor (preferably a snowshoer or skier!) who would like to devote a few weeks of their time to direct the construction of this hut. The Friends Group will pay for the materials and at least this person’s expenses. We think we can start Friday the 16th. If you know of anyone, have them email me at email@example.com or call me at 509-466-9540. I would be happy to discuss the details with them. It’s easier if they have their own tools, but they will also be able to use the fairly extensive resources that the park has as well. I will be out of town this Friday to Tuesday but will be available by email.Then, secondly, assuming we can find the right person, we will need additional volunteers who can pound nails and move boards around. So those people should contact me too and let me know their level of building experience and their availability. You do not need a Discover Pass. In fact, with 24 hours of service, you can get a free Discover Pass!This has the potential to be a very exciting, fun project, and volunteers are guaranteed to learn a lot about the park, have the opportunity to hang out with some fun people, and maybe even learn a few things about building.Thanks for your help!!Cris Currie, PresidentFriends of Mt. Spokane State Park
STATE PARKS — Spokane Nordic members are recruiting helpers to spruce up the Selkirk Lodge and brush out the miles of trail in preparation for the 2013-14 cross-country skiing season at Mount Spokane State Park.
The second Trail Day of the summer at the Mt. Spokane Cross-Country Ski Park is Saturday, Aug.10. Projects include wood and brush cutting. It looks to be a gorgeous mid-summer day, and families are welcome.
Meet at the Selkirk Lodge at 9 a.m. dressed in work clothes and bring gloves and your lunch. Also bring a small chainsaw or limb/branch loppers if you have them.
RSVP: Brian Hawkins at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Over the past month, volunteers have power-washed and caulked the outside of the Selkirk Lodge, and it's ready for stain. Spokane Nordic needs helpers willing to spray new stain on the logs and brush it in. Sprayer, brushes and stain will be provided.
Contact Brian Hawkins at email@example.com to work out a date.
SPECIAL REPORT ON WOLVES:
STATE PARKS — Volunteers organized from local groups and organized by the Washington Trails Association are installing foot bridges for hikers and snowshoers over the creek crossed by popular trails, such as Trail 100. in Mount Spokane State Park.
Photo shows the crew after the first bridge was completed on Monday.
WTA is returning to the park July 20-22 to finish more bridges.
STATE PARKS — A group of volunteers from various local groups — more are needed! — are meeting Wednesday in an effort to curb the spread of knapweed in Mount Spokane State Park.
To join the group, wear good boots and meet at 10 a.m. at the hairpin turn parking lot inside the park at the Mount Kit Carson Loop Road trailhead.
Bags will be provided but bring gloves and whatever else you need to be comfortable working outdoors in the sun (water, hat, sun glasses, snacks/lunch, sun screen etc). A small spade or old screwdriver might also help.
The group plans to work for a couple hours, break for lunch and then perhaps hike the park trails in the afternoon.
Read on for details about spotted knapweed from from the Spokane County Weed Board:
PARKS — Most of the trails are open for hiking and biking at Mount Spokane State Park. If that's not enough incentive, the photo of a Calypso orchid above indicates the wildflower are providing additional attractions.
“These little blooms seem to have been out for a week or more at Mount Spokane,” said birder Mike Miller, who photographed the “fairy slipper” today.
June is prime time to see the calypsoes farther up the mountain as well as many other blooming flowers, including beargrass.
TRAILS — After five months, hikers can finally leave their snowshoes home when heading up to hit the trail at Mount Spokane State Park.
The Spokane Mountaineers report there's still some snow on portions of the trail system, but hiking boots alone are sufficient. Expect some mud, though.
A group from the club was on the mountain last weekend volunteering to remove the signs marking the winter downhill ski area boundary.
OUTGOING – The Inland Northwest Trails Coalition has rounded up a dozen local leaders in trails-related efforts for the annual “state of the trails” presentations tonight (March 21) starting at 6 p.m. at Mountain Gear Headquarters, 6021 E. Mansfield Ave. in Spokane Valley.
This is the place for trail users to learn where they can get involved in trail projects.
Progress on the Spokane River water trail will be updated and the Washington Trails Association will detail this season’s trails maintenance projects from Spokane County to the Salmo-Priest Wilderness.
Lunell Haught, INTC coordinator, said the consortium of outdoor recreation and conservation groups has pulled together to encourage city and county governments to engage in regional trail planning.
The group’s vision, she said, “is a system of paths, trails and open space corridors that connect neighborhoods, community and regional parks and conservation land in our region to engage people in muscle-powered recreational and conservation opportunities, promote active transportation and preserve open space to enhance our region’s quality of life.”
WINTER SPORTS — Fat bikes, snow bikes…. whatever you call them, they're catching on year-round with a niche of the cycling community that's mobilizing on ballooned out tires. Get a glimpse of from the saddle in this video: What's Up With Fat Bikes?
WINTER SPORTS — A few snowmobilers continue to break rules and ride out of their approved zones and onto snowshoe trails and the downhill ski area at Mount Spokane.
It's not a new problem, as this story explains.
Snowshoers who have been finding tracks in several park areas off-limits to snowmobiles suggest people who encounter the problem should report their experience on Mount Spokane State Park's online visitor comment form.