Copper Creek Hut


Cross-country Ski - Copper Creek Hut

Come ski the route to a great hut where we can have lunch inside. Preference is given for the first week of reservations to graduates of the Olympia Branch cross country ski course. Graduates from other Branches welcome. NOT for beginners - see details below. Aspiring XC Leaders are encouraged to apply for the Assistant Leader position and one will be given priority registration.

  • Moderate/Strenuous, G-XC 1 Beginner Groomed, G-XC 2 Advanced Beginner Groomed
  • Moderate
  • Mileage: 8.8 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 1,000 ft

Meet at 7:30 am in Eatonville at the Plaza Market at 203 Center Street E 98328. 

A Snow Park Permit is required and these are not for sale in Eatonville. 

There is a Park and Ride nearby and we can sort out car pooling at the Market.

Coffee shops on are the main road into town and should be open. Please arrive early to purchase your beverage of choice.

Note: the Plaza Market does not open until 8 am, so bring your  snacks, lunch and beverages with you.

Ski rentals not available in Eatonville.

The last time I checked, the skis rented at Whitaker Mountaineering in Ashford were very wide and very short, meaning very slow and this held up our party because the member could not keep up with a standard pace, especially going downhill. For that reason, DO NOT plan to rent skis at Ashford, which we will not be driving to. 

Our goal is to ski together, have fun and be safe. Participants must have a XC Badge or be a recent Graduate from a Mountaineer branch XC course  (instructor references required) or have relevant recent experience.

This is mostly a road ski that will hopefully be groomed through the woods with some views of the valley below and across to the other huts in the Mount Tahoma Ski Trail System. 

My expectation is that all participants can ski the route, which is moderate (due to length) and can be challenging for beginners (due to a short down hill run from the Hut - which can be walked), some long downhill runs and several short downhill sections off the road back to the car park (which can be walked). For this reason, only experienced skiers or advanced beginners accepted and Leader Permission is required.

My style is to be inclusive, stay  together and to lead from the middle, allowing others to lead the way if desired. I'm happy to provide instructions if requested as there are many tips to improve your skiing.

All participants should be able to maintain a moderate pace of 2.0 - 2.5 miles per hour, have good downhill ski control and wedge turn (or other) to stop. 

We will be stopping for breaks once an hour to change clothes, hydrate, have snacks, attend to potential blisters and take photos. 

Metal edged skis and back country  poles preferred, but lots of people ski this route on light touring skis. I served on the MTSTA backcountry ski patrol for years and skied all the trails on light gear many times. 

The Hut is usually open, heated and day skiers are welcome to have lunch inside. We can use the stove and utensils to heat up water, so bring your hot cocoa, tea or other beverages. We must wash our dishes before leaving. 

There are vault toilet outhouses at the trailheads and all Huts.

If conditions and the weather is good, on Sunday I plan to car camp nearby and ski to High Hut, then Snow Bowl Hut in the South District of the Mount Tahoma Ski Trai System. This will NOT be an official Mountaineers trip. This is a strenuous up hill trip and climbing skins are strongly recommended, but not mandatory. Metal edged skis recommended with backcountry boots. 

If the weather is clear, the views of Mount Rainer from High Hut are spectacular.   This is NOT for beginners because the routes down from High Hut and Snow Bowl Hut are steep, sustained, narrow and always tracked and stamped down by snowshoers, making this a long and sustained challenging downhill run. That being said, I've had many enjoyable down hill runs on powder or spring corn snow. 

If the snow is good, we may ski down  to the Yurt from Snow Bowl Hut to enjoy some beverages and then make a loop back to the trailhead, which shortens the packed downhill portion. 

The rewards are a good work out and it's the only  place in Washington where you can ski hut to hut.


Copper Creek Hut

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

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