July 24, 2011 – Mt Bachelor

So I was going a bit crazy not having snowboarded somewhere in a couple of weeks,  and when I got a free pass for the weekend, I decided not to pass it up.  Todd wasn’t able to head out with me, but Andy was willing to tag along.  After talking about heading up to Hood, we ended up making the drive over to Mt Bachelor for some late July turns.  I pulled into Andy’s house around 5:15 am, we loaded gear, and were off.  We arrived in the Sunrise parking lot just before 8:00 am and parked at the gate along the highway.  The hike up under the Sunrise chair went quickly, and the slight breeze felt nice, though I could tell it was going to be a warm day.  I started skinning about half way up the Sunrise, and soon we were at the base of the summit lift.  We hiked/skinned the last 1500 feet in about an hour, and coverage in the bowl looked excellent.  The views north of the Sisters and Broken Top were superb!

Near the top of Bachelor

From the top of the summit lift, we gained the true summit of the mountain to the west, enjoying the great views south to Mt Scott and beyond.  Looking northwest, Sparks Lake was shimmering in the valley below.  Here’s a shot of Andy with Sparks Lake, the South Sister & Broken Top…

Andy and Sparks Lake

We sat on top for awhile, enjoying the views and the slight breeze.  After a phone call home, we decided to drop in the Cirque bowl on the westernmost side where it looked the steepest.  I dropped in first and snapped a few shots of Andy making his way down towards me on his snowblades.

Andy riding the cirque bowl

Andy grabbed the camera and rode down to the bottom of the steeper pitch and prepared to shoot a few shots of me.  I rode out onto the steeper section of the slope and found it a bit hard to make jump turns, mostly because I hadn’t seen the craters from the avy control work that patrol had done earlier in the month when they opened for the 4th!  The craters combined with the super steep pitch made for some interesting turns.  Anyone who says Bachelor doesn’t have any steeps obviously hasn’t ridden this pitch of the Cirque bowl…

Riding a steep shot off the summit

The rest of the ride down through the Cirque bowl was nice.  We found the best snow on the west side of the bowl, and made corn turns all the way to the bottom, having to hike out the last 20 feet or so of the bowl.  Here’s a shot looking back up from the way we’d came…

Bachelor's Cirque Bowl

Climbing out of the Cirque bowl, we found suitable snow for riding on the other side.  It was a bit dirty, but opened up nicely down lower for some excellent turns above the bottom of the summit lift.  Here’s a shot of Andy riding by on the snowblades…

Andy riding below the Cirque Bowl

After down climbing the road cut that leads to the summit lift, we continued to make turns down the mountain.  We were able link turns to within about 100 feet of the base, on one of the runs between Sunrise and Skyliner.  A short hike through the trees put us back at my truck.  Feeling a bit hungry, we drove over to the main lot for lunch and a brew.

Bachelor from the main lot

After lunch, we decided to head out in order to get back to town in time to attend a Eugene Emeralds baseball game with our families.  It was another great day of summer riding in the central Oregon cascades!

Mt Bachelor from the west on the drive home