Author Archives: langleybackcountry

About langleybackcountry

I am a member of Cascade Backcountry Ski Patrol (CBSP), a volunteer National Ski Patrol organization loosely based in Seattle. Our group operates as volunteers with USFS Ranger Districts outside of developed ski areas in the Cascade Mountains near Snoqualmie, Blewett, Stevens, and Washington passes.

I’ll Take a Pass

As I have made clear before, I am not an extreme athlete. Skiing to me is not about big, steep lines. It is about exploring beautiful places in the snow. My friend Jonathan and I like to try to get … Continue reading

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Science Fair 2.0: Waterproof Breathables

My son and I went back to the outdoor well for the science fair again this year, this time taking a look at waterproof breathable (WPB) fabrics. Gore-Tex is the king of these, but there are many other makers as … Continue reading

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Backcountry Science Fair: White Gas vs Isobutane

I recently read someone’s “Best of 2016” list of backpacking stoves. In the comments on the Facebook page, some people were asking about canister vs liquid fuel (white gas) stoves. Since the site that came up with the list is … Continue reading

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My Relationship With Risk

Nearly 25 years ago in Colorado, my climbing partners and I nearly made a tragic error. We glissaded down a sun-blasted gully on an Indian Peaks summit in the early afternoon. My friend Mike was nearly buried in a wet snow slide. … Continue reading

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Maps & Navigation: What is a Datum and Why is it Important?

Few things are more frustrating as an educator than reading a trade magazine from a major organization in a particular field and finding a glaring factual error in a how-to article. About a year ago I was reading an article … Continue reading

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Preparation + Navigational Skills + Sound Decisions = Survival

This is a great example of the best outcome for a solo lost hiker in the true wilderness of the Olympic Mountains. Note there was no mention of GPS. Maps, compass, and the knowledge to use them!

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Delayed Gratification

Sometimes a delay is worth it. I had planned a trip with some other members of my ski patrol, but due to the hideous weather a week ago, I rescheduled it. Since no one was available this week, I ended … Continue reading

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