September 4, 2006 – White River Snowfield

September the 4th turned out to be a beautiful day get turn in. I met Todd in the Timberline parking lot and we left around 7:15am. We hiked up the road along the magic mile canyon to the base of the Palmer in t-shirts and shorts. There didn’t seem to be many people riding the lift, but we did get a few puzzled looks as we hiked/skinned up the east side of the Palmer.

Silcox Hut, September 2006

We hiked along the dirt road up to the Silcox hut, then hiked and skinned on the snow above the Magic Mile. The views were excellent as we continued past a few of the monster jumps on the east side of the lower Palmer snowfield.

Hiking past a large summer kicker

Once we reached the top of the Palmer snowfield, weheaded over to the White River canyon and continued up the snowfield to around 9300′ where the continuous snow ended. There were some great crevasses to skier’s left on the White River glacier. The snow patches above towards Crater Rock and the summit were hideously cupped and not worth further hiking.

White River Glacier, September 2006

The ride down was great, with spectacular views into the White River Canyon and beyond (though it was a bit smokey). The snow was excellent corn and very mildly cupped. We rode down the WR snowfield, and then with a small traverse, connected with the Palmer groomers all the way down the magic mile canyon to 6300′. The return on investment was about 91% (3000’/3300′), and we were back in the parking lot by 12:30. Not bad for September. The day played out with some good beer at the Ratskellar in Govy, followed by the 3 hour drive back to the southern Willamette Valley.

September turns on the White River Snowfield