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It Won’t Stop Snowing: Mt. Baker Scores 133 Inches in the Past 8 Days

The parking lot at Baker today. Photo: Courtesy of Powderchaser Steve

The Pacific Northwest has been hammered in the past week with multiple feet of freshies. It all stems from an atmospheric river from the Hawaiian islands that has pumped a continuous flow of moisture into the Northwest, which combined with cold temperature to create the most epic conditions of the season! 

Starting last weekend, spots in the PNW began grabbing huge snow totals. Whistler nabbed 25 inches Sunday night, while Mt. Baker in Washington snagged a cool 20 inches overnight. And the fun didn't stop there: The snow fell essentially nonstop throughout the week.

In fact, I added up snow totals at Mount Baker, per the Northwest Avalanche Center snow telemetry, calculating a whopping 133 inches in 8 days. If you were stationed at Mt. Baker starting last Thursday, you would have woken up to snow totals of 12 inches, 17 inches, 15 inches, 14 inches, 10 inches, 22 inches, 15 inches and 28 inches during that timeframe.

I spent the past week chasing the storms up into Canada and down into Washington, and it was nothing if not memorable. I chased this storm from Utah and ended up in the first tracks line at the Whistler gondola by 5:45 AM with 50-75 others already in line! The crowd grew rapidly in anticipation of an early tracks opening, only to get the bad news:  “The mountain is closed this morning until further notice.”

Wind gusts of 150 kilometers per hour had Whistler-Blackcomb on virtual standstill. There was a sudden awe of silence. The line grew to thousands who waited patiently for lifts to start spinning by 10AM, when the resort finally opened limited terrain. None of the steeps on either Blackcomb or Whistler opened that day. 

The roads outside Mount Baker were cloaked in white following all the new snow. Photo: Courtesy of Powderchaser Steve

I chased to Mount Baker on Monday, and while it was great, I found myself wishing I could have experienced the upper mountain at Whistler. And, to make matters worse my rental car windows got smashed out Tuesday evening in Seattle, where a thief stole all my clothes, ski jacket, suitcases and personal items. If you see a street bum wearing a red Marmot Ski Jacket it may be mine! 

It was dumping at Stevens Pass Tuesday, and luckily, the car thieves of Washington don't have much use for Never Summer snowboards or Salomon boots, so I had the absolute bare necessities I needed to enjoy the snow. I was still wearing my snow clothes from the day prior when I switched out the car I had for a new rental with four working windows at 11PM, snagged a couple hours of sleep and made first chair at Stevens Pass Wednesday morning as the resort's marketing staff was kind enough to loan me a coat. 

The locals were frothing all week at Mount Baker. Photo: Courtesy of Powderchaser Steve

Somehow, shit got worse for me as I had to to rush Denver Thursday for an emergency root canal. I managed to score a return ticket to Seattle for just $125 only to find myself back at Baker at 7AM Friday morning, running straight from the dentist’s chair back to the airport so I could enjoy the 25 inches of new snow.

The parking lot pretty much sums it up below with a full burial at Mount Baker today.

This weekend will bring additional moderate or heavy snow to the southern and central Cascades on Saturday, before rain and warming finishes out the week on Sunday. Crystal is favored in this pattern. A return of colder temps and moisture may arrive in the Northwest by Tuesday. Baker will continue to see snowfall early this weekend with another foot likely to fall through Saturday afternoon. 

About The Author

stash member powderchaser Steve

Please consider a donation to Powderchasers (our only source of revenue). 10% of all donations go to Avalanche centers in the West for education. We do our best to keep the powder buzz alive. All donations of $50 bucks or more get a swag Phunkshun balaclava from Powderchasers Thanks to those that have donated! We hope to see you on the slopes!

Surprisingly, I always liked reading such articles, it was very informative