Backpacking the North Cascades, by Chip Phillips
I recently had the pleasure of backpacking up to the Sahale Glacier in North Cascades National park, with fellow Photo Cascadia team members David Cobb and Sean Bagshaw. We had a fantastic trip and made some great decisions throughout.
We made the decision to camp below Cascade Pass the first night, and the light show that we got the next morning confirmed our thoughts about whether or not we had made the right decision. We all shot the sunrise from different vantage points. I made my way out at about 4:00 am with my headlamp and hiked up to Sahale Arm, where I shot the above image. David was next, where he shot from Cascade Pass. Sean made his way up the trail and found a great vantage point from just below the pass. The fall color was really starting to show, and the glow in the sky really made it pop.
After breakfast, we made our way up to the Sahale Glacier back country camp, just before the rain started. We spent the next 12 hours bundled up in our tents below the glacier in a pretty heavy wind and rain storm. We all managed to stay dry and enjoyed the adventure.
The next morning around 7:00, the clouds began to clear, and we had a great time shooting for quite a while. Most of the good light was directly across the valley from where we camped. If we had still been down around Cascade Pass, we wouldn’t have gotten the show we did.
We used our entire arsenal of lenses and shot scenes from just feet away from our tents:
After breakfast, we started down the trail for the long continuous hall back.
Along the way, we met up at a small tarn for lunch and Sean posed for some mountain beauty shots.
We all had a really great time, and learned a lot from each other along the way. I can’t wait until the next adventure!
This last image is another from the first morning, shot from Sahale Arm, above Cascade Pass. The little lake below is Doubtful Lake.