Isaac's Journey Home Page

Cross Country Ski Trip at Methow Valley, Mazama, WA (14-17 Jan 2011)

Trip Background:
Methow Valley is located at Mazama, WA. We stayed at the Timberline lodges (Valley View Lodge and Elk Lodge). It is about 300 miles driving distances from Bremerton, WA. and the counties we drove through or stopped by were Kitsap, Pierce, King, Chelan, and Okanogan. The place was truly a Cross Country (XC) trail mega that had about 120 miles of groomed XC ski trails: for example, Methow Community Trail (19 miles, easist), Sun Mountain Trails (32 miles, most difficut), Mazama Trails (20 miles, moderate), and Rendezvous Trails (29 miles, difficult). Its place is considered one of the Top 10 XC ski centers in North America !

1-a Methow Valley XC ski map.jpg

1-aaMethow Valley Topo.jpg

2 MazamaTrailMap_large.jpg

3 Methow Communtiy trail.jpg

4 rendezvousTrail_Small.jpg

5 sunMtTrails_large.jpg



The event was a Peninsular Wilderness Club (PWC) event sponsored by Paul and Emily. Much thanks to them for their time and efforts in planning and coordinating the trip, and thanks to the car owners for carpooling. And thanks to all the participants who together had a great time skiing, sharing snack & food & drinks, and socializing. Many of the participants were retirees and long time PWCers, who were having a great time enjoying their lives. For me, I wanted to learn how to XC ski and ski most of time. I got what I really wanted by XC skiing at all opportunites. Much thanks to Paul who gave me a few XC ski tips which were very helpful and Tom H, Kevin, & Nancy who skied together.

Food during the trip:
a. All breakfast & lunch and Fri night meals were up to each individual. For Sat-Mon breakfast, most of us ate the leftovers from dinner.
b. Potluck dinner for all paticipants on Sat night at the Elk Lodge. Half of Timberline folks (Paul, Bruce, Jacki, Tom H, and I) cooked for the potluck and the other half (Tom R, Cathy, Kevin, and Maria) cooked the standalone Timberline lodge dinner on Sunday. No cellphone coverage or internet connetivity at the Timberline Lodges. Told that WiFi internet connection was available at the front office only. There were cell phone coverages at the Mazama and Winthrop towns. No cable or public TV channel was available, but had a DVD player with many DVD movies.

Summary of daily activities:
Day 1 (Fri): Departed Paul's house at 0915 and arrived at the destination at 1520. Paul, Tom H, and I carpooled together. When we arrived at the lodge, we quickly got on the Mazama trail. Weather was fair at mid 30s. Paul and Tom H XC skied about 5-6 miles. I did about 3 miles. After dinner, some of us played the Mexcan Domino. I also learned how to play the game for the first time. Thanks to Tom R for patiently teaching some of us how to play the Domino.


























Day 2 (Sat): XC skiied all day (1006-1715, 19-20 miles with elev changes from 1700- 2100 ft). XC skied on the Methow Community trail, basically, skied from Winthrop, to Mazama, and back to the lodge. Sprinkled and showered all night but turned out to be a very nice day for skiing. Temp was at low 30s and little cloudy all day. The Methow Community trail was mostly flat which made easy for the beginners. It was about 19 miles that Paul, Tom H, Nancy, and I XC skied. Kevin skate skied about 30 miles that included some of the Sun Mountain trail, skiied back-and-forth, and the Methow Community trail. Thanks to Maria who drove the car back to the lodge. Dinner was an excellent potluck for all participants prepared by people from both lodges. We also celebrated Maria's birthday with an apple pie prepared by Kevin.









Click Here for the rest of Day 2 pictures.

Day 3 (Sun): XC skiied all day (1115-1510, 12-13 miles with elev changes from 2600-3950 ft). XC skied on the Rendezvous trail. It had some steep hills which was for intemediate skiers. Tom H and I XC skiied the black trail up (Little Cub Creek) and down on the blue trail (Cub Creek), a total of 12-13 miles. Paul and Kevin skate skiied the green up (Cougar Bait) and down the blue trail (Cub Creek) together with us, a total of 15-16 miles. For dinner at the timberline was delicious sausage spagetti prepared by Tom R, Cathy, Kevin, and Maria. Then, all of us watched the movie, "Dr. Strangelove." After the movie, some of us played the Dominos.









Click Here for the rest of Day 3 pictures.

Day 4 (Mon): Tom H and I XC skied to Mazama and back (3-4 miles, 0710-0850 with no elev change). Tom did about 4 miles loop and I did about 2.5 miles traverse. Drove back home. Left the lodge about 1045 and stopped by the Winthrop Sports Store to check out the ski equipment. I ended up getting the new binders installed on my classic ski. Arrived at Paul's house around 1830.









Click Here for the rest of Day 4 pictures.

In overall, it was a fun trip that I would like to go again next year. Nordic skiing is a new sports to me but, I would like to be more efficient in Nordic skiing as soon as I can before I get any older to avoid injuries. It was an excellent exercise working on the inner thigh and outside calf muscles, which would greatly help me hiking/backpacking some long distances this summer.

Isaac's Journey Home Page