Archive of: Mountain Echoes

Issue

Title

Know the fitness level of your canine hiking companions May Issue 1 2012

Know the fitness level of your canine hiking companions

Prudent travelers make a concerted effort to match fitness and skill levels among members of a group on backcountry excursions. It’s common sense, promotes safety and adds to everyone’s enjoyment. But do we use the same amount of discretion with our pets? On an early summer climb in the Chugach Mountains several years ago, I severely miscalculated the endurance of my dog — a two-year-old standard poodle — and put us both in jeopardy.

Can you hear the snow melting? April Issue 5 2012

Can you hear the snow melting?

April is almost gone and the small patch of ground that was to become a garden in my front yard is still covered by a foot of snow. My back yard, which receives about as much sun as the inside of the Whittier tunnel, has three feet of snow that will probably not melt until July.

Ruth Glacier is a magical place April Issue 4 2012

Ruth Glacier is a magical place

This week I’d like to take you on an excursion to a glacier theatre...a theatre of eternal ice...a theatre surrounded by dizzying, snow-encrusted peaks, sheer granite walls, a restless theatre of echos, rumbling avalanches; a pensive, brooding theater of silence...a theatre where time suspends itself into an endless beginning.

April Issue 3 2012

Saying goodbye to winter in the Alaska Range

I greet spring earlier than just about anyone I know — sometimes in late February — when the sun slowly begins to rise higher above the horizon, emitting a slight trace of warmth. Conversely, I hold onto winter longer than most. I’m not as winter-obsessed, however, as a guy who frequents the Lane Glacier in Hatcher Pass. In a log book at the Lane Hut, located just below the glacier, he reported skiing every month of the year for several years. That’s true dedication.

Alaska Flag Song stirs powerful emotions April Issue 2 2012

Alaska Flag Song stirs powerful emotions

The first two lines of the Alaska Flag Song: Bold, evocative, an invitation to listen, to explore.

Scores of Alaskans turn out for celestial light show March Issue 5 2012

Scores of Alaskans turn out for celestial light show

The evening of March 8, a Thursday, was nothing short of a celestial extravaganza. A full moon vied with the aurora borealis to create a spectacular light show across the skies, while Venus and Jupiter played tag as they crouched above the western horizon.

Snowmachine trails provide backcountry access March Issue 4 2012

Snowmachine trails provide backcountry access

I don’t get into arguments over trail use by outdoor recreationists, because I feel there is room in Alaska for everyone — snowmachiners, cross-country skiers, snowshoers, dog sledders, hikers, mountain bikers, etc.

Rain-soaked in Hawaii — making the best of it March Issue 3 2012

Rain-soaked in Hawaii — making the best of it

On the Hawaiian island of Kauai three weeks ago, the rain was coming down in buckets, turning small streams into raging torrents, causing mudslides and flooding that closed roads and schools.

Alaska – a place of firsts March Issue 2 2012

Alaska – a place of firsts

Alaska is such a unique place that it isn’t difficult to compile a list of firsts...

It’s important to connect with the child within March Issue 1 2012

It’s important to connect with the child within

One of the most poignant Twilight Zone episodes I ever saw on television was the one set at a home for senior citizens.