White Pass is a fantastic ski resort that mixes a massive skiable area with the small-town, homey feel you get from being on the less popular side of the Cascades. Though it fills up on weekends, the lines for Tahoe resort drinking fountains are longer than the lift lines at White Pass.
Just across the highway from the resort's chutes and moguls, White Pass maintains a Nordic center with the best groomed options in a hundred-mile radius. Day passes are $15, assuming you show up while the Nordic center is operational: 8:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M., Thursday through Sunday. Still, the place offers over 10 miles of groomed trails that wind through intact old-growth, in addition to backcountry and snowshoe connections, gear rentals, lessons, and all the base area accoutrements you'd expect from a ski resort. Dogs are allowed after 3:30 P.M.
The groomed trails include classic tracks, space to skate, and ample snowshoe-friendly shoulders. They make a couple of convoluted loops around the Wenatchee and Gifford-Pinchot National Forests that appear shaggy and laden with old man's beard. Depending on your level of expertise, you'll want to seek out different sections of the trail system:
If you're only interested in the eastern portion of the trail system, and you're not planning on taking advantage of the White Pass Yurt's hot cocoa, you can also park on the north side of the road by the Wenatchee National Forest sign, just east of the resort. Just ski north into the woods and you'll hit the southeast corner of the Lake Loop.
Winter backcountry adventures can be dangerous outdoor activities that pose significant risks as conditions affecting safety (i.e. weather, snowpack stability, avalanche hazard) are constantly changing. Prior to engaging in these activities each individual should get the proper training to make safe decisions and be equipped to use avalanche safety resources and tools. Please visit our Backcountry Skiing and Avalanche Safety post to learn more.