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by: Tim Kelley

Oct - Dec Jan - Feb Mar - Apr May - Jun Summer

Where Backcountry Ski Seasons Merge

Late Summer 2011: I was hiking up the Jewel Glacier in late September and asked a backcountry skier: "Is this your first ski of the season?"  His response was: "I'm doing the 12 month thing, so this is my last ski of the season.  And probably my first ski of next ski season."  The Jewel Glacier is a familiar snow-seeking pilgrimage for many Southcentral Alaska backcountry skiers and snowboarders.  Late summer and early fall snowfalls here bridge seasons for folks that like to ski or snowboard all year.

The Jewel Glacier on the northwest slopes of Summit and Jewel Mountain.
On top of the Jewel Glacier, looking down at Crystal Lake, Crow Pass and ski tracks.
September shredder. "I can see you.  But you can't see me!" The Crow Pass Trail. Old mine site steam engine.
  Map showing the location of Jewel Glacier, east of Crow Pass.  It should probably be called the Jewel Glaciers (plural) now, as recession of the ice has split the glacier in two.  

Some Summer Hiking Photos
Deep Water Bay, Prince William Sound
Deep Water Bay offers something that is rather rare to Southcentral Alaskan hikers - lots of granite.
A black bear teaches her two cubs how to rock climb.  "Hey mom!  Wait up!" A bent rod ... a good sign. Ling cod ... good tasting fish.
  The State of Alaska "Chenega" ferry, a huge catamaran that goes around 35 knots.  
  Eaglek Bay, Prince William Sound  
  She's climbed the peak across the bay too.    
A bear den. A plant fight, a water cress gets stabbed. PWS can be hard core bushwhacking and route finding.  I bring along a GPS, but arrows in mud never lose GPS signals or run low on batteries.
  Hiking the Bird to Girdwood ridge route on a nice day.  
    Down below us a C-130 flew by while refueling a Blackhawk helicopter.
    The bore tide (white line) moves past the Girdwood turn-off.  
Talkeetna Mountains

Prince William Sound's Best Athletes

Summer 2011: The spring and summer xc skiing season in Prince William Sound was very short-lived due to the low snowfall of the past winter.  So it's on to peak bagging.  On the topic of Prince William Sound ... whether traveling in the Sound for skiing or other activities you often encounter Dall's Porpoises.  These guys are smart, playful, entertaining, cool looking and probably the best athletes in Prince William Sound.  Judge for yourself ...


Oct - Dec Jan - Feb Mar - Apr May - Jun Summer
Alaska Backcountry XC Skiing