snowshoeing and pasta

Ruth Creek

I only had a one-day weekend this week, so we decided to take advantage of it and went snowshoeing. Our usual spot is the access road to Hannegan Pass, below Mount Baker. We like it because it has parking, isn’t usually too populated and, as long as you don’t go up too far, has virtually no avalanche danger. We snowshoed up to Artist Point once and I’m amazed there were no avalanches – we were very lucky that time, and I prefer not to risk it if I don’t have to.

The snowshoe itself was nice enough, although the snow had turned to rain and we quickly overheated in our snow gear. We went just far enough to work up good appetites, then headed back down the valley to Glacier. Lunch at Milano’s, after all, is the real reason we like to go hiking or snowshoeing at Mount Baker.


If you’ve been skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing or hiking, what could be better than an enormous plate of pasta and a bottle of wine? Milano’s takes care of all your carbohydrate needs, from their delicious crumbly cornmeal bread to their homemade linguine and panini to their intimidatingly rich dessert selection. We try to go anytime we’re up the Mount Baker Highway – but we need to earn it with a little physical exertion.

seafood linguine at Milano's

J got the seafood linguine. This seemed different than I remembered it, with more shellfish and less squid, and all the seafood seemed slightly overcooked. It was tasty, though, with a garlicky white sauce just coating the noodles.

pasta puttanesca at Milano's

I got the pasta puttanesca, which was delicious. I don’t know that it really needed an entire jar’s worth of capers dumped into it, and it had what seemed like an entire branch of rosemary mixed in as well, but puttanesca isn’t supposed to be subtle. I ate about half and took the rest home for my work lunch the next day, but still felt like a had a case of salt poisoning for the rest of the day. Ah well, it was worth it.


Because J still felt that we were on his birthday week, he ordered a bottle of wine to go with our lunch. This particular wine had been recommended by Rich at the Libation Station, and it was quite good with the pasta – except that it was more than a little effervescent, which I found distinctly off-putting in the context. Later, on Rich’s advice, we shook up the remainder of the wine and decanted it, and it was vastly improved.

It was a good outing, but I had forgotten just how big Milano’s portions are. Next time I think we need to snowshoe for an extra hour or so!

4 thoughts on “snowshoeing and pasta

  1. Why is it that some people are lucky enough to live in Washington state?

    My wife and I visited Washington (along with Oregon) last summer and (with the exception of Seattle) loved the state. Taking the coast highway from Seattle to northern California, we found it hard to find a good restaurant. Of course, it was our first time to the area and we stayed pretty much along the coast drive.

    Returning to Seattle (for our flight home) we took a route through the volcanoes region. Absolutely beautiful and we were able to find some pretty good places to eat.

    Super nice blog, by the way.

  2. Sounds like a great day! I live north of Seattle so will have to trek on up to Milano’s and check it out. Maybe I’ll ride the motorcycle up there when the weather warms up…….sounds like a good destination ride.


  3. DocChuck – thanks, glad you like the blog! I was lucky enough to be born in Washington, and I think it’s all beautiful. If you come back make sure to check out Chuckanut Drive – great scenery and restaurants!

    Bikerchikz – if you haven’t been up the Mount Baker Highway you definitely should go, I bet it would be great fun on a bike. There’s also a place up there called the Beer Shrine, but we found it a little disappointing – more fun to look at than to eat in.

  4. Hi guys,
    I stumbled across your site while noodling about Googledom. I was wondering if the Cornacchia had cleared itself up. I’ve had many a good bottles of wine do that and have seen many of them poured down the drain before the patience thing kicked in. I actually got a whole case of Syrah that was in the midst of a second fermintation in the bottle. Most were tasty after they settled down. Sometimes the cork had a different idea though. Messy.

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