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January 2020 Newsletter

Climber: "I could see everywhere there was a penalty for too much comfort.” – Fred Beckey

NOTE FROM THE EDITOR: If you can’t recruit them, make them. And with that in mind, I’d like to give a big congratulations and thank you to Leslie, Jenna, and Kate for increasing SAC’s membership by three since I wrote the last newsletter.


January Meeting

Date/Time: Tuesday, Jan 7, 2019, at 7:00 p.m. (The next two meetings will also be on Tuesdays: 2/11 and 3/10)

Location: The Burlington Public Library, located at 820 East Washington Avenue, one block south of Fairhaven at the corner of Washington Avenue and Holly Street.

Program: A short presentation from Phil Wilson on the Skagit 60 will be followed by a presentation by Lisa and Brandon Rouse on Alpine Trekking and Via Ferratas of Europe

Introducing Hazel Mae Selting Smith with the gun show!

Skagit Alpine Club Meeting Notes: Dec 4, 2019

The meeting was the annual holiday party and white elephant gift exchange, where the only high schooler there somehow ended up with both baby onesies and a rack of Rainier. What a party!

Did you know Dec 4, 2019 was also an election day? Well, it was, and the SAC officers for 2020 will be same as 2019. Big thank you to the following voluntolds, I mean, volunteers!

President: Andrea Bachman

Vice President: Phil Wilson

Treasurer: Jenna Price

Secretary: Leslie Parks

Ellis Parks and Pete Price having a staring contest to see who gets to lead the first pitch of epic climb, eventually.

Old Business

The new year means new dues are due! You can bring $35 in cash or check to the meeting or pay here:

The annual Mt Baker Ski Weekend will be Mar. 6 – Mar. 8. We have two cabins reserved with a total of 16 rooms. Cost is $180 per room for the weekend. SAC will cover the Pizza Soiree at Chair 9 on Mar. 6. Sign up here: The deadline to reserve a room is Feb 11!!! You must be a SAC member to attend.

The BMC is coming, but only if we can find another lead instructor!!! Seriously, we have one volunteer, but she’s also planning her wedding and getting married during the class, so we desperately need someone else to step up. To help out, contact Lisa and Juliet at or The next planning meeting will be Jan. 17, 2020.

Raymond getting in some early season laps near Twin Lakes.


Trip Report: Crooked Bum 6,937 ft

Date: Dec. 9, 2019

Anticipating the closure of SR20 in the coming days and a ‘mostly sunny’ forecast, Mark DesVoigne (best known as Old Mark) and I drove the highway east one final time on December 9th two days before closure for the winter. Mark and I have been climbing together for over 40 years. We first met in the 1978 SAC Basic Mountaineering Class. I was just 14, a high school Freshman, Mark is 18 years older.

Our friendship is bound by a passion for mountains, morbid climbing humor, and good beer.

We set our sights on Crooked Bum, a 6937’ summit that sits immediately west of Rainy Pass and two miles east of Corteo Pk. The plowed turnout at the pass was empty of cars when we arrived and would stay that way all day. Although the Maple Pass Loop is likely the most popular trail in the area, it was surprisingly void of other hikers. An early Christmas gift indeed! We walked the boot-packed trail easily to Heather Pass where we donned snowshoes and turned back east towards the summit. The snow was not deep, but soft, which required a bit more “snow wrestling” on the steeper sections than we had anticipated.

Two steps up and one sliding back. Tough work for a 74-year-old mountaineer. We arrived at the high point two and a half hours after leaving the car with spectacular views of the many, many summits previously visited. We spent an hour on top soaking in the warming sunshine, identifying peaks and reflecting on the climbs.

Not long after our trip, I received a text from Old Mark which read “I’m still feeling smug about our climb last week”. Yes! Well said.

Mark Nelson (Young Mark)

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