686 Scores Miracle March At Mt. Baker
Last March, long after the locals had hung up their boots after a seemingly mediocre snow year at Mt. Baker, the 686 crew rolled through awaiting whatever the mountain had to offer. The result was nothing short of “Miracle March” conditions. Two weeks of classic storm factory dark mountain days mixed with perfect sunny powder days and everything in between provided the crew with stomping grounds full of fresh snow. Cam Pierce, Forest Bailey, and Sebi Geiger started off the week with days in the trees dodging heavy snowfall then taking to the air when the sun peaked through. Week two saw a change in crews. Cam stuck around, and Joe Bosler, Mike Gray, and Andy Berginsperry rotated in with fresh legs and a ready-to-rip attitude. “Thanks to Mt. Baker for having us out and to everyone that came and got the goods as well. Can’t wait for this year!” – Patrick McCarthy.
Interview with Patrick McCarthy and Forest Bailey below.
Have you been to baker before?
Patrick McCarthy – Yeah I have been living at Baker for 15 years now since 1999. I have probably gotten about 100 days a year or so maybe 1500 or so days up at Mt Baker. Every year we do this trip super good times are had by all.
Forest Bailey – Sure have.
Did your boots ever dry out?
Patrick McCarthy – Oh yeah we always stay at my cabin up in Glacier, Washington when we ride up there so I am known to get the wood stove fire cranking and everyone’s boots dry out. You just don’t want to be in the loft trying to sleep.
How deep/good was the snow?
Patrick McCarthy – The snow was amazing this year. It had its ups and downs like any year but when the crew rolled through for the shoot on this edit it was the best the snow was all year. Snow during the nights and some of the days and then some high pressure sunny days which made it all come together. The crews killed it and everyone learned a little something about moving safely in the backcountry from me which is what I hope for. Keep everyone feeling good, hitting the features they want and not getting in other peoples way too much.
Forest Bailey – Depends, have had it good had it bad
What was your favorite day?
Patrick McCarthy – My favorite day was probably the day we hit the infamous road gap. I am getting a bit older now (34) years old and when we went to hit it I was telling myself I wanted to send it. When we finished up the build the boys let me guinea pig the jump so I tossed a method and got upside down over the Mt Baker road gap. Shit keeps me feeling young and on my toes. So that was probably my favorite day of the trip.
Forest Bailey – Any day with McCarthy and crew
Who was your favorite riding partner?
Patrick McCarthy – At Mt. Baker I always love smashing around hooting and hollering with everyone. Its hard to say, Forest Bailey stayed some extra days after the shoot we always have so much fun riding together, laughing and sending it, taking him around to some sneaky routes around the mountain. Its hard when the whole crew is there, some of the lines I like only have a couple times down them so I can’t blow them all out to everyone.
Forest Bailey – McCarthy for sure
When did this trip happen?
Patrick McCarthy – This trip was about March 12th through the 26th or so. You never know when its gonna be good you just have to pick a time and wait it out. Baker rewards the faithful believers. If you’re wondering if it will be good you should just stay at home.
Forest Bailey – This was last march.
What was the best run of the trip?
Patrick McCarthy – The best runs of the trip were a classic bluebird, cold, deep powder day where we opened up some lines on the infamous Shuksan Arm.
Forest Bailey – Not quite sure, probably whichever run there were no cameras out.
Did you land a new trick on this trip?
Patrick McCarthy – I am sure I popped off something in a different way or hit something a little different. Cam Pierce did a hammer time backside double cork 900 over the hemisphere’s gap that was hot fire also he stuck a backside rodeo to fakie on the cat gap which was insane.
Forest Bailey – Nope
Who was the tour guide?
Patrick McCarthy – I am the tour guide. What the Sarge says goes.
Forest Bailey – The sarge
How much did it snow?
Patrick McCarthy – We probably got a total of about 75 inches of fresh snow during the week which made for some all time conditions. Mt Baker never ceases to amaze me. Conditions had been tough for a couple weeks leading up to the trip for sure. Also during Baker Banked it was icy we had some good times last year but also some bleak conditions as well.
Forest Bailey – Couple o feet
What gear were you the most hyped on?
Patrick McCarthy – I always wear mostly the GLCR line. It is our most technical, waterproof, line that has the cuts that I am looking for. I like classic feeling outerwear and the GLCR line is the best stuff we make. So pumped on how the GLCR line held up at Baker in the conditions that we faced.
Forest Bailey – Cosmic collection baby!
Did you hit the mt. baker road gap?
Patrick McCarthy – Yes for sure gotta go first.
Forest Bailey – I didn’t hit it this trip
Have you ever hit the baker road gap before? If not what was it like hitting it for the first time? If you have how was it different then times before?
Patrick McCarthy – I have hit the Mt Baker road gap every year since I have moved to Mt Baker so I have hit it at least 15 times at least one session a year since I moved up here. Its one of my favorite jumps in the world the rush you get is awesome and the run in can be tricky. Love that shit!
Forest Bailey – I hit it last season while filming for nation. It’s a fun jump. Float right over the road to the sweet spot.
How was it different then times before?
Patrick McCarthy – Its always new and fresh every time. You change the pop, how you build it, who is there, dealing with park rangers, there are always some unique elements to hitting it. I love it good conditions or not its always worth a send!