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Backpacker Magazine – Fall/Winter Gear Guide 2012

Skier's Paradise: Backcountry Hut & Yurt Destinations

Maximize your winter fun with a backcountry basecamp where you can spend all day skiing or snowshoeing, and all evening lounging by the fire. These 10 huts and yurts will make you hope the snow never melts.

by: Sarah L. Stewart

Baldy Knoll Yurt (Ben Fullerton)
Baldy Knoll Yurt (Ben Fullerton)
Bell Lake Yurt, Tobacco Root Range, MT ( Kene Sperry)
Bell Lake Yurt, Tobacco Root Range, MT ( Kene Sperry)
Coyote Yurt, Smoky Mountains, ID (Craig Wolfrom)
Coyote Yurt, Smoky Mountains, ID (Craig Wolfrom)
Tuna Yurt, Uinta NF, UT (Francisco Kjolseth)
Tuna Yurt, Uinta NF, UT (Francisco Kjolseth)

Ostrander
Ski Hut, Yosemite NP, CA
Stay in a historic sierra lodge.

Bunk in the heart of Yosemite in a two-story stone hut built in 1941, the newest of the park’s CCC-era structures. The journey there is not for novices: From Badger Pass, the 10-mile Bridalveil Creek route offers the most gradual approach (1,950-foot gain) to the primitive 25-person lodge at Ostrander Lake, while the nine-mile, more strenuous (2,300-foot) Horizon Ridge route affords better views, including the backside of Half Dome. Once there, check with the live-in hut keeper for recent avalanche info before lapping Horse Ridge bowl, the 500-foot-deep, north-facing cirque staring at you from across the frozen lake. $32/person/night weekdays, $52/person/night weekends; Yosemite Conservancy (yosemiteconservancy.org; 209-379-2648)



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