Washington was nervous about three skiiers who disappeared from Crystal Mountain about the same time as the fatal avalanche in December 2002
Anyway, the skiiers hunkered down and rode out the bad weather and walked to safety. Here's an excerpt.
WHITE PASS - Two Puget Sound men three days overdue from a backcountry ski trip east of Mount Rainier were found safe Friday, the Yakima County sheriff's search and rescue team said.
James Hamaker, 35, of Tacoma, and Steve Rikker, 47, of Seattle, walked out onto U.S. 12 near Dog Lake, two miles east of White Pass, about 4 p.m., said Sgt. John Durand, search and rescue coordinator.
The men told searchers that unexpectedly heavy snowfall slowed them down, although they were experienced and well-equipped.
The two men had plans to ski south along the Pacific Crest Trail to White Pass by Tuesday, said Chuck Wildman, a member of the search and rescue team.
Both Hamaker and Rikker are experienced backcountry skiers.
Search and rescue crews interviewed the men and then helped them dig their parked car out of the snow at White Pass, so they could drive home, Durand said.
Durand said the men were not lost and had not been more than a half mile off the Pacific Crest Trail at any time.