The newest ONC chapter, Eagle Cap Nordic Club does not have groomed trails. It’s break-your-own trail, but maps of trails are available and the trail itself is marked with blue plastic diamonds along the route.
Nordic trails are all on “very safe terrain,” said Jerry Hustafa, president of the Eagle Cap Nordic Club. “However, the backcountry is by its nature in avalanche country,” he warned. “You have to educate yourself, pay attention to the Avalanche Center and pay attention to weather and snow-pack conditions.”
The Wallowa Mountains, Oregon’s “Little Switzerland” offers unique backcountry skiing experiences in the Eagle Cap Wilderness Area. The Wallowa’s intercontinental snowpack, in excess of 400 inches a winter, provides wide open bowls, old growth glades, and classic couloirs. Ringed in by peaks just shy of 10,000 feet, our ski terrain boasts abundant north-facing powder slopes ensuring fresh tracks well after a storm plus non-technical summits.
Wallowa County has seen quite a growth in ski tourism in the last 10 years, according to Hustafa. “Quite a bit of backcountry skiing goes on in Wallowa County,” he said. “We have quite a few locals who back country or cross country ski and we get a lot of use from Hood River, Boise, Spokane, Tri-Cities, Portland and Seattle as well.”
Even when the Pacific Northwest has a bad snow year, Wallowa County has better snow than almost anywhere else, “except for maybe Anthony Lakes,” Hustafa said. “Generally our snow pack is a higher quality in that it is less wet and dense than it is in the Cascade Range. We have very good terrain and good access, and even with the growth we have had we’re not very crowded.”
To join or to find out more information about Eagle Cap Nordic Club please contact:
President: Jerry Hustafa at email@example.com or phone 541-432-0366
VicePresident: Paul Arentsen
Secretary: Todd Knorr
Treasurer: Dana Nave at firstname.lastname@example.org