Local Conditions

March 07, 2020


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Conditions Update March 7 2020

Well, we've made it through our first winter in the new building at 44 Lost River Rd.  Business was good and we were all happier in the bright, open space!  Thanks to all of you who've come to check out the new space and we look forward to welcoming the rest!  But now we're experiencing the beginning of Spring and everyone is asking about what's happening here!

  • It's still winter up highway 20 with a 90 inch base depth and good settled powder available to those skiers with a snowmobile or folks going out with North Cascades Mountain Guides.
  • Highway 20 is closed at the Early Winters Campground about 2 miles west of Mazama.  Rumor has it the DOT will begin clearing the North Cascades Highway beginning March 23.  That is obviously not set in stone yet but folks with sleds parked at the end of the road should take notice!
  • For skiers without a sled, your options are very limited until the DOT clears the highway.  Some folks have been skiing up Sandy Butte behind the Freestone Inn and report decent snow on the upper 1000'.  Otherwise you would be looking at a 7+ mile approach before you'd begin climbing for turns.  I believe Highway 20 will be open to Silverstar gate by March 25 for those wanting to ski Silverstar.
  • Nordic trails are still being groomed throughout the entire 200km of the Methow Trails system.  There are some thin spots here and there and some debris on the snow in heavily treed areas but we're still getting some good nordic skiing.
  • Fat biking on snow is almost done with a lot of melting happening around Pearrygin Lake State Park and Lloyd Ranch.  I'd give it another week before it's showing dirt.
  • Folks looking to "hike" instead of ski will have few options.  Lewis Butte just northwest of Winthrop is mostly melted out and Mill Hill on the north side of Twisp is melted too.
  • Climbers will find snow at the base of Fun Rock but the rock itself is dry and climbable.  Fly Boys and Prime Rib would have a snowy approach and may have some seeping but are climbable.  You would need to rap the route since there is no access to the top as long as the snow holds.
  • We are selling off a couple pairs of AT rental skis for those looking at Spring deals.  We have a DPS Wailer 112 Tour 1 package with bindings and skins for $999 and a Voile SuperCharger package with bindings and skins for $899.  We also have some skis and boots on sale so stop by the new shop to take a look.

Please let us know if you get out and about and have any updates for us to share and thanks for supporting local businesses like the Goat's Beard Mountain Supplies!


June 03, 2019


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Mazama Conditions Update 6-3-19

Conditions update for upper Methow Valley June 3, 2019

First, let me answer everyone's question before it's even asked: The new Goat's Beard building is getting close to being finished.  It won't be much bigger than our current space but it will all be on one level and Rick LeDuc has created a beautiful, rustic looking space with reclaimed beams, corrugated metal, and barn board. However, the entire Mazama Store/Goat's Beard property requires a new septic system that will be installed just west of our new building.  Until that work is finished, we will not be moving into the new space.  My best guess at this point is that we won't move in until the fall.  We're very excited for the new space but are trying to be patient!

OK, now that we've got that out of the way, here's what's going on around here:

  • Goat Peak Lookout is accessible with minimal snow to cross.  Beautiful flowers abound!
  • Hart's Pass can be reached via car but there is still snow on the road to Slate Peak above the Guard Station.  The PCT still has snow but it won't be long before it has melted.
  • Cutthroat Trail is mostly clear of snow to the Lake but you will encounter deep snow hiking to Cutthroat Pass.
  • Blue Lake trail is mostly snow covered and we'd recommend snowshoes.
  • Maple Pass loop trail is snow covered above Lake Ann.  We wouldn't recommend this loop yet but for those adventurous hikers, bring poles, snowshoes, microspikes, and a sense of direction for where the trail is covered in snow.
  • Skiing is pretty limited now but folks are still getting out around WA Pass and on the north side of Slate Peak above Hart's Pass and on the Silverstar Glacier.
  • Alpine climbing on WA Pass is going strong.  All routes are ready for climbing but we recommend an ice axe and/or crampons for the Becky Gully or other steeper approaches.  
  • All of the Goat Wall routes including Flyboys and Prime Rib are in great condition and you can drive to the top to avoid rapelling.  Restless Natives is still seeping water.  Fun Rock, Matrix, Prospector, Europa, and Gate Creek are good to go.  We've also received Bryan Burdo's new Mazama Sport Climbing book!  Check it out here
  • For mountain bikers, check out the new trails at Sun Mountain.  Climb It Lower and Upper, Gobbler's Teaser, Pete's Dragon, Wild Turkey, and Woodpecker are riding great!  Note that Dirty Paws at Virginia Ridge will be logged this summer and will be inaccessible.

We've got an excellent selection of everything you'd need for your outdoor adventure AND for looking great out on the town!  Please stop by and support your local shop - we'd love to hear about your adventures!

And, as usual, feel free to call with questions about conditions - things are changing quickly this time of year!  We're open 8:30-5:30 daily.



April 13, 2019


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April 2019 Mazama Conditions Report

Conditions Update for Mazama and the Methow Valley - April 13, 2019

After a lower than normal snow year, we are beginning to see the signs of Spring here in Mazama and the Methow Valley.  Here is the update so you can plan your next visit!

Washington Pass is open from the east to Silverstar Gate.  The road crew have plowed past WA Pass and it is expected that WSDOT may open the North Cascades Hwy by Friday April 19!  It is open for bikers and the curious walkers beyond the gate Friday-Sunday until it opens.

Hart's Pass is plowed to Cache Creek.  There is patchy snow and dirt for the first mile above the parking but there is access to snow up high.

Backcountry skiers can easily access Silverstar Glacier from the gate.  The snow is soft and punchy just above the highway but you can ski from the car.  If the Pass opens on the 19th, the Birthday Tour will be the place to be next weekend.  The snow depth is only 60% of normal so we expect it to melt off quickly this year.  Keep you eye on the temps for solid freezes overnight.


Hiking trails are limited to the lowlands.  Spokane Gulch is open above Mazama and has flowers popping.  Patterson Mountain, Lewis Butte, and Pipestone Canyon are open for hiking too.  It is too early for any trails in the Mountains.

Bikers have a new option on Lewis Butte.  There is a flowy machine built trail from the Riser Lake parking and, if combined with the Riser Lake loop, you have an 8 mile ride with over 1000' of elevation gain.  The Community Trail and Jacks Trail in Mazama are rideable now too.  Bowen and Full Frontal near Lester Rd are dry as are many of the Virginia Ridge trails including Dirty Paws.  Sun Mountain, Buck Mountain, and Rendezvous Basin bike trails are still too snowy.


Climbers will find dry rock at Fun Rock and the Matrix.  Prospector will have some wet routes but much will be dry too.  The Goat Wall is dry and ready for action with the exception of Restless Natives.  Fly Boys continues to see a lot of traffic. Goat Creek Rd is not even close to ready for a shuttle so plan to rappel the routes on Goat Wall.

Some good news on the guidebook front - I've heard from Bryan Burdo that he will print a new version of Mazama Rock with updates to Fun Rock and will include Fly Boys.  It will not have the Matrix or Mazama Granite chapters this go around.  I'm hoping to have copies for sale by the 20th of April!

Give us a call at the shop if you have any specific questions or a report to give us.  509-996-2515.

All of our new Spring products are arriving daily.  We will have an excellent selection of all the clothing, shoes, gear, guidebooks, and maps you need for your next adventure in the Methow Valley!




July 02, 2018


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July Conditions Update

Conditions Update for July 2018 - It's time to get out and PLAY!

(Cutthroat Pass)

It's been a long slow melt this spring but I think we can finally say it's time to get up high and enjoy the mountains!  Here is the latest:

  • Harts Pass is clear and you can drive all the way to Slate Peak.  You will encounter some sections of trail with snow but hiking to Windy Pass or Grasshopper Pass is doable.  Flowers to come out soon!
  • Skiing is about done on WA Pass - have to head to Baker or Ranier for best touring.
  • Blue Lake, Cutthroat Lake/Pass are both in good condition with very little snow.
  • Maple Pass has some snow near the top but should not be missed!
  • All of the climbing around Mazama is in great condition.  Flyboys has proven to be very popular and at 18 pitches of 5.9+ it is on the bucket list for lots of visiting climbers.  We have the topo here and all of the beta to get you to the top!
(11yr Old Ethan on the last pitch of Flyboys)
  • Alpine climbing on WA Pass is in prime condition.  Snow has melted out from the Becky Gully and the baby goats will entertain you.  Watch for the new climber's access trail that will begin construction soon!
  • There are several new mountain bike trails at Sun Mountain that have greatly enhanced the riding options in the Valley.  Dirty Paws near Virginia Ridge is fantastic too!  Stop by the GB for more info!
The Goat's Beard is loaded with fantastic gear for climbing and backpacking along with footwear and clothing for every adventure!  We're also getting a new building so expect to see some construction next door!  Hopefully we'll be moving in Spring.  Want to open a pub in our current building?  Put together your business plan and see Rick or Missy LeDuc!
June 08, 2018


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Mazama Conditions Report for June 2018

Conditions Report for Upper Methow Valley June 2018

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May 05, 2018


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May 2018 in Mazama!

Spring is in full bloom in the Methow Valley!  Here is the conditions report for skiing, biking, hiking, and climbing in Washington's playground!

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December 20, 2017

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Holiday Conditions Update December 2017

The snow finally came!  Here are the details:

Highway 20 is still plowed to Silverstar gate 7 miles west of Mazama.

The high country received between 2-3 feet of snow in the past 2 days and conditions are DEEP!  Backcountry skiers were finding a weak layer within the new storm snow and it was even stepping down to a crust layer.  Avalanches were running naturally as well as skier triggered.  Be sure to read up on the NWAC report and be conservative while these layers settle out. 

Delancy Ridge is accessible from the Silverstar Gate parking and allows for BC skiing without a snowmobile.

All of the Methow Trails in Mazama are now groomed and open with good skate and classic tracks.

Hart's Pass is open and good for snowmobile traffic.

There is some ice forming in Mazama.  The Standard and Gate Creek both have ice as well as the Czech Gully.  I'm not saying its fat and getting climbed a lot but ice is forming and if temps are as forecasted (cold!) this week then we'll be climbing ice for Christmas.

The snow is slow and soft for fat biking at the moment but I'm sure conditions will improve as the compaction increases and temps drop.

The Goat's Beard has everything you need for your winter adventures from the latest AT boots, bindings, skins, beacons, shovels, and the best skis from DPS and Voile.  

Micki has curated an excellent collection of clothing for your everyday wear and great outdoor and nordic apparel.  We have fun new base layers from Kari Traa and all of our Ibex is 25% off!

Stop by or call and we can help plan your winter vacation.

Hours 8-6 Daily starting Friday 12-22




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