Location: Denny Creek / Tinkham (NF 5510 night shot and NF 55 day shots)
At the time these images were taken, I was cautious (but not really concerned) with being out in the snow in this specific location. I had been on this stretch of forest service road many times before and at all times of the year and I was confidently aware of the potential hazards in the surrounding geology (or so I thought). I was certain that commuting the 30 miles from work back to home was far more dangerous.
Well, unfortunately this story did not just end with us wheeling around in the snow. As it turns out my cousin, his wife, and their close friend had camped overnight not more than 4 miles away from where my wife and I had been earlier in the day. Two of them were exceptionally experienced hikers as well as climbers and they had climbed all over the US and other parts of the world. My cousin had been my private guide on my successful ascent of Mt. Rainier years ago and I trusted him implicitly. To get right to the point... as they were hiking on their way out of camp they were caught in an avalanche. Buried alive my cousin fought his way to the surface. He miraculously survived the avalanche, a badly broken leg, and the two+ days he was stranded out in the elements. Unfortunately, his awesome wife and climbing partner were not as fortunate.
I am one of those people that simply 'does better' being outside than inside so I can't honestly say I would do anything different knowing what I know now... only that your words of reserve don't fall on deaf ears - and... I am still learning.