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Backpacker Magazine – Online Exclusive

Photographer Ethan Welty's Home Range: The North Cascades

Join photographer Ethan Welty on a photo tour of Washington's North Cascades. Ethan shows off not only his favorite spots in North Cascades National Park, but also some hikes and views in the wilderness areas that surround the park.

First some sciene:
The western United States was violently assembled through collisions between drifting rock masses and the North American continent, forming jumbles of mountains which in time eroded away. In the last 40 million years, the subduction of heavier oceanic crust pushed the North Cascades upwards once again, exposing in peaks and ridges the metamorphic rock formed in the intense heat and pressure of the ancient collisions. The Picket Range - the crown jewel of the North Cascades (in my opinion) - is carved from this hard crystalline backbone; resistant to erosion, they persist as the steepest peaks.
Here we see depicted my friend Obadiah Reid contemplating the burliness of the Southern Pickets (from left to right: McMillan Spires, Inspiration, Pyramid, Degenhardt, and Terror) from above Picket Pass in North Cascades National Park.


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