Snow cave weekend on Santiam Pass

February 3rd and 4th of 2007 was a chance to practice building and sleeping in snow caves and a crevasse rescue refresher with the Chemeketen Climb Club. (I shared the digging duties and cave with Gary Greenwood. )
LOCATION: NW Flank of Hayrick Butte in Santiam Pass area near Hoodoo.
Lessons learned: You get very wet building caves; Consolidated snow=3+ hrs to make a suitable cave and works best with metal shovel blades. If your using the "T" method of construction - which we tried here (also see "Freedom of the Hills" or or ) You'll need a snow saw or suitable snow conditions to close off the "T" once your done. We didn't have either so ended up with a rather large cave opening. Fine for the conditions we had, but not the ideal design.