Winter Backpack to Lake Anne Ridge

Rate this Adventure Washington Heather Meadows Parking Area

Added by Scott Kranz

Snowshoe, Ski, or Split Board up from the Mt. Baker ski area to Austin Pass and then follow the Lake Anne trail to Lake Anne and eventually to the ridge above the same. You'll get access to one of the most epic views of Mount Shuksan's southwest face from a snow camp on a ridge above Lake Anne!

Arrive at the upper ski resort parking lot (approx. 4300 feet elev.) and snowshoe, skin, or split board up. Make your way toward Artist Point and halt at Austin Pass, gaining approximately 1200 feet of elevation over approximately 2 miles (one way). From Austin Pass, turn left (south) to take the Lake Anne trail and descend approximately 800 feet into the basin below.

In the basin, you will see the west arm of Shuksan on your left and Huntoon Point on your right. Follow the basin south and eventually follow the trail to the left (southeast) toward the saddle above Lake Anne, gaining approximately 900 feet of elevation. Upon reaching the saddle, you can descend to Lake Anne or traverse up to the ridge above and to the west of the lake. At Lake Anne and the ridge above the lake, there are several great spots to set up your snow camp and prepare yourself for an epic sunset and sunrise next to Mt. Shuksan.

Directions: From I-5 near Bellingham, drive east on Highway 542 (the Mt. Baker highway) to the upper Mt. Baker Ski Resort parking lot at Heather Meadows.

Key Points:

  • Be aware of current snow conditions and avalanche risk
  • Do not attempt this winter trip without proper knowledge, skill, and gear. Some previous winter travel and avalanche evaluation experience is essential

Pack List

  • 10 Essentials
  • Headlamp
  • Snowcamping gear (e.g., 4-season tent or sturdy 3-season tent; very warm sleeping bag and sleeping pad; camping stove and other camping gear)
  • Snowshoes, micro-spikes, and/or ice axe (depending on snow conditions)
  • Shovel
  • Avalanche gear (depending on snow conditions and avalanche risk)
  • Northwest Forest Pass (for parking lot)
  • Food and Water
  • Rainier Beers (optional)
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Activities:

Backpacking, Camping, Hiking, Photography, Snowshoeing

Skill Level:

Advanced

Season:

Winter

Trail Type:

Out-and-Back

Distance:

14 Miles

Elev. Gain:

2000 Feet

Features:

Bathrooms
Easy Parking
Forest
Scenic
Wildlife

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Added by Scott Kranz

Full-time commercial and editorial photographer specializing in outdoor sports, lifestyle, landscapes, and travel photography.

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