Rogers Pass Base Camp Skiing

By:  Ben
September 1, 2010

Everything was different the next morning. We woke up to brilliant sunshine, with cool, clear, cloudless skies. The new snow from the previous 3 days sparkled under the new sun and we could barely contain our excitement as we cooked the remainder of our food for breakfast (it was a mix of instant milk, brown sugar, a meager amount of oatmeal, and macaroni noodles – we were desperate!)

Finally, the sun on our last day!

We geared up and started skinning up toward the Seven Steps

People skinning in the distance

We passed Noah and my previous high point and continued up the final headwall. The views were incredible, and the snow quality excellent. We dug a pit and decided that the overall stability was good, so we continued upward.

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Wow. Just wow. The Asulkan Glacier in all its glory

Then the fun part started. Skiing fresh powder at 3000 meters with the entirety of the Asulkan Glacier spread out in front of us and sharp rocky peaks all around. It’s impossible to describe how cool the skiing up there was, so I’m just going to post the pictures and let them do the talking. Just imagine the velvety smoothness of 1-2′ of fresh powder underfoot…

Noah getting deep on the headwall

Sun, powder, and views... it doesn't get much better!

Tom skiing on the top of the world

Noah follows down the piste

Those are some sexy tracks...

The final of the Seven Steps

So much untracked snow, so little time!

Back up the skintrack...

Finally we got tired and it was getting late, so we headed back to pack up camp. With our packs fully loaded again, we said goodbye to our home for the past few days and began the ski down. With the snow getting heavier at lower elevations, the ski down with 50 lb packs proved exciting, but we finally made it out to the trailhead. A skier driving by quickly picked us up and we hitched our way back to the Glacier Lodge where we began to dry out.

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Read about the author:   Ben
Enjoy this TR? Read another: HIKE WEEK! Carried (Away) Up the Trap Dike


  1. powhounddd
    wrote on September 1st, 2010 at 8:06 pm  

    Thank you. Between these TRs,watching Ice Road Truckers and snowboard trailers, I think I can survive both this ridiculous heat wave AND the rest of ragweed season. Thankyouthankyouthankyou!!!!!!!! Bring on the snow!

  2. Harvey44
    wrote on September 2nd, 2010 at 7:51 am  

    I’ll admit I had to Google Rogers Pass to figure out where it was. Having skied the west only 25 days in my life, it’s hard for me to grasp the feeling of being disappointed in cloudy snowy days. I mean I understand it, logically … blocking access to the terrain you were after. Love the skintrack pics and all the shots from the last two days. Must be great to ski so much that you don’t get all your TRs up until Labor Day. Great for us too. Let the temp dropping begin!

    • Ben
      wrote on September 2nd, 2010 at 11:19 pm  

      It’s a tricky question – you’re never really AGAINST new snow ;) but between visibility and avi conditions, it’s really the sunny days that let you get up high and ski the cool stuff!

  3. Patrick
    wrote on October 26th, 2010 at 10:30 am  

    Hey, sweet trip report. The pics were awesome.
    Some buddies and I are going to be doing some winter camping up at Rogers Pass this winter. I was curious what kind of camping gear you guys used and if you slept warm/comfortable through the night. Was a 0 Deg F rated sleeping bag warm enough, or did you need something rated below that??

    • Ben
      wrote on October 26th, 2010 at 10:39 am  

      Thanks Patrick! We used a 4-season Mountain Hardware Trango 3.1 tent. It worked great, even with all the snow (make sure you guy it out really well if it’s snowing a lot!). It wasn’t particularly cold, we had 0 F bags and were fine, although I’m sure it gets colder sometime. Make sure you’ve got plenty of food and a nice puffy and I think you’ll be all set most of the time, unless it’s a particularly cold spell. That place gets enough snow that the 4-season tent is pretty key though!

      Another good option is to check out the huts run by the Alpine Club of Canada. You have to reserve them way in advance and they’re more expensive, but that would definitely be a sweet option that would keep you warmer (and allow you to carry less up!)

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