This past week, 9 friends and myself headed out into the backcountry to Janet’s Cabin. Janet’s Cabin is part of the 10th Mountain Division Hut System and is located about 5.5 miles from a backcountry gate at Copper Mountain. It was AMAZING. Instead of giving you every gory detail of our trip, I figured I’d give you 10 reasons to visit Janet’s, or another one of the 10th Mountain Huts this winter!
- Awesome time with friends. What better bonding experience can you have with a group of people than getting outside and exploring with them?
- Powder! Janet’s Cabin is a short skin away from Searle Pass and had so much untouched snow. There were also other short skins from the hut that resulted in really fun lines at little to no cost.
- Can you say - WOOD BURNING SAUNA? Janet’s has a wood burning sauna out back, which makes for a perfect, relaxing afternoon activity to wind down after a day of skiing.
- Time to unplug! With sketchy cell service at best and no real source of electricity, we had a few days to decompress and leave work and other things behind at the car!
- You have to work for your fun. Yes, there’s powder, but you are legitimately “earning your turns” by skinning up. It feels great to not only get laps in but feel like you earned them!
- Janet’s living room was huge, and included a wood burning stove (perfect for drying socks and boot liners next to!) All 10 of us were able to huddle around the warmth and hang out together in one place! Definitely a plus!
- Breakfast! Yes, you heard me right. With a fully stocked kitchen, making breakfast with your friends becomes a fun activity, not a chore. Plus, we had Mountain Standard’s Power On Pancakes. Not only were they a quick, easy meal, but they tasted amazing and kept us full throughout a morning of skiing.
- New friends! Each hut holds between 16-20 people, so we met some really cool people at Janet’s! By the second morning, we were sharing food and stories like old friends!
- Beds! You heard me right! This isn’t your brother’s backpacking trip sleeping in a tent (though that would be rad too!). Each hut has beds WITH MATTRESSES. Let’s talk about a good night’s sleep, everyone!
- It’s an experience like you’ve never had before. Though this wasn’t my first hut trip, it was extremely different than my first. And, the experience is nothing like backpacking or car camping. It’s an element all it’s own!
So! If you’re convinced to travel out to a hut this winter, make sure you have the following things:
- Mode of transportation: an AT set-up or snow shoes
- Beacon, shovel and probe
- Map. Make sure you know your route and are comfortable finding it if there is no skin track
- Layers: base, puffy, and shell. My MS Terrain ‘n Rain shell worked wonders! Especially on cold days, you want to start with minimal layers so you don’t sweat. That makes it harder to get warm later.
- Socks - 2 pairs! I took my Mountain Standard Merino Camp Sock for the hut and skinned in in a different pair!
- Snacks and food! MS salsa makes for an awesome afternoon hut snack, and the Power On Pancakes are on point for breakfast!
If you want to see more photos from Janet's or follow along on other winter adventures, follow Anna on instagram at @acwong