By Sarah Schrock

A recent wave of natural and human-caused avalanches has raised the hair on the backs of many backcountry skiers around the valley. Thankfully, no fatalities or major injuries have been reported from two separate incidents that occurred last week. 

According to the Northwest Avalanche Center, the first incident involved four skiers thrown 1,000 feet down-slope in the hairpin area of Washington Pass when a cornice naturally released, partially burying one party member.  The second avalanche was human-triggered and occurred on a north-facing slope in the Cedar Creek drainage that resulted in a full burial and beacon-aided rescue. Both burials involved locals, experienced backcountry skiers with knowledge of the terrain and avalanches. 

Avalanche forecasting and information is updated daily through the Northwest Avalanche Center at www.nwac.org. NWAC is a collaborative between the U.S. Forest Service and the nonprofit. The information is free, but the organization is membership based as a means of keeping it and you alive. 

While things are a bit unnerving in the high country, down here in the lowlands, circulating rumors of the sale of the Twisp River Pub can finally be put to rest. Still to close, ownership of the beloved pub is slated to be handed over to Joe Marver, proprietor of the neighboring Twisp River Suites, in upcoming days. Joe’s vision includes a facelift to the establishment to transform it into a market-style eatery with a variety of food vendors. 

Joe wants to keep it local. The idea is to invite local food merchants or restaurateurs to set up space in the building and sell a variety of high-quality meals and beverages. Imagine a stylish, modern food court with an open-air beer garden, artisan baked goods, gourmet coffee, and savory food offerings ranging from ethnic fusion cuisine to pub eats. Now imagine rooftop dining overlooking the river and live music, with counter and/or table service options. That’s the current vision Marver has for the eatery and he hopes to have it up and going by Labor Day!

Whatever the eatery evolves into, Friday night at Mick n’ Miki’s Red Cedar Bar proved that we Twispy lowlanders have been starved for the opportunity to dance. When given the chance, it we will come out of woodwork to see live music and boogie. Wild Mountain Nation, Winthrop’s own bluegrass ensemble, packed the house, giving us what we have all been deprived of with the absence of the main stage at the pub: live music and dancing.

March 14 seems to be of utmost importance to all things business in town. The Twisp Chamber will be hosting a Sip and Chat at Blue Star Coffee Roasters, from 5-6:30 p.m.  This local business networking opportunity connects the movers and shakers of the business community face to face in a casual setting. 

Also on March 14, the Local Investment Network has two workshops for existing business or interested investors. The Local Investor Network is a project initiated through TwispWorks economic development coordinator, Hannah McIntosh. The network serves as an alternative to traditional lending by matching borrowers and lenders together.  Instead of borrowing money from some unknown entity, you can establish a relationship with your lender that is more personal and creates buy in from both parties, as well as keeping the money within the community. See the TwispWorks site or call Hannah at 997-3300 for registration and information regarding the network.

So, whether you’re doing business face to face down here in the lowlands, traversing the north face in the high country, or imagining how to stuff your face at the new eatery, there are plenty of opportunities to keep your dollars local. The recent avalanche incidents are a sobering reminder to stay fresh on your skills. Visit www.ncmountainguides.com for local avalanche training courses and information. 

PREVIOUSLY, IN TWISP

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