Northwest Adventuring #1- Wallowa Alpine Huts
I'm a little loath to write about the Wallowa Mountains and Wallowa Alpine Huts, because it can already be difficult to get reservations to one of the huts that operate in various parts of the range. But I'm going to anyway because it's a backcountry skier's dream that everyone into such activities should experience at least once.
The Wallowas are a hidden gem in Northeastern Oregon, located outside the bustling metropolis of Joseph, Oregon. The Wallowas are a long way from anything, the closest major airport being Boise (four hours), and it's a long six hour drive from Portland. The range is far enough east that the snowpack is more comparable to intercontinental snow than the maritime snow we get in the Cascades. The terrain is incredible and expansive offering everything from big alpine couloirs to beautiful ghost glades. A large percentage of that terrain exists in the Eagle Cap Wilderness. Save for the tiny community ski hill Ferguson Ridge, there is no resort skiing.
The Wallowas are a destination not to be missed by the discerning backcountry skier. Get your reservations now for next season, they fill up fast!