Since the big storm last weekend, the Lake Placid area has picked up another 3-4" of light snow in a nearly continuous series of light flurries. This makes for very nice surfaces pretty much everywhere. Skis or snowshoes are now required by regulation for travel in the High Peaks. In other areas they are needed and should be used.
Friday and Saturday will see continued occasional light snow. Friday will be warmer with a high near 30, but temperatures plunge by the weekend with highs only single digits or maybe 10 on Saturday and Sunday. Starting Monday, highs will be in the teens, but no chance of any more snow through to the end of the week.
Entire trail is now skiable. Both the Old Mt. Road and McKenzie Pass sections have been broken out. Paul Smiths section has great cover, but no reports of what stretches have been broken out.
CROSS-COUNTRY SKI CENTERS
CASCADE X-C SKI CENTER:
Km Open and Groomed: 15km Track Set: 10 km
New snow: 9" last five days Base Depth: 8" Off Track 14"
Surface Conditions: Packed powder
Remarks: Ski shop open
MOUNT VAN HOEVENBERG:
Km Open and Groomed: 55km Track Set: 53 km
New snow: 9" last five days Base Depth: 12" on man-made trails. 8" on natural snow. Off Track 14"
Surface Conditions: Packed powder
PAUL SMITHS VISITOR INTERPRETIVE CENTER:
40 km Open. Wider trails groomed with some set track.
New Snow: 3" -24 hours Base Depth: 12"
Surface Conditions: packed powder
With this snow, pretty much everything is now skiable, and skis or snowshoes are now required by regulation for travel in the High Peaks. In other areas they are needed and should be used. Avalanche Pass definitely skiable, although still a few rocks to avoid between Marcy Dam and Avalanche Camp. Avalanche Lake is crossable. Wright Peak Ski Trail skiable, but approach on the hiking trail still rocky. Marcy trail still likely somewhat rough for the first 1.5 mi. up to the bridge, but skiable cover beyond. Whales Tail Ski Trail also reported in good shape.
Reports indicate that lakes that had been good skiing before all the heavy, wet new snow now are compromised with slush under the snow. This problem may improve with the very cold weather this weekend, but for now no lake crossing can be assumed to be free of slush. (You won't fall through, but you'll have very wet feet and iced up skis.)
Snow Depth at Lake Colden: 27" Snow Depth at 4,000 feet (est.): 4-5 feet.
WHITEFACE HIGHWAY: Skiable all the way to the Castle.
MARCY DAM TRUCK TRAIL: Definitely skiable, and still a better choice than the hiking trail.
HIKING TRAIL FROM ADK LOJ: Skiable. Old Marcy Dam approach has some water, but is the better approach. Current hiking trail has some roots showing, but the bypass after the long bridge is in good shape
AVALANCHE PASS: Skiable through to Avalanche Lake. Avalanche Lake is frozen crossable.
CONNERY POND TO WHITEFACE LANDING: Skiable. Hills just past the summer parking are improved with the new snow. Connery Pond no longer skiable due to slush under the snow.
HAYS BROOK TRUCK TRAIL: Definitely very skiable to both Grass Pond and the Sheep Meadow. Parking area was plowed after the first storm. We can hope that happens again
FISH POND TRUCK TRAIL: Definitely skiable, but loop back on the ponds likely not recommended to the above-mentioned slush condition.
RAQUETTE FALLS: No report, but should be skiable to the falls without having to walk down both "Hemlock Hill" and the final switchbacks. Plowing ends one mile from the parking area at the Corey's Road gate (now closed), but vehicles were being driven that far before the latest snow.
GULF BROOK ROAD TO BOREAS PONDS: Parking area is not being plowed this winter, but for now at least some vehicles can access the parking area. Washed out culvert at 1/2 mile is a bit of an obstacle, but can be easily negotiated on skis.
NEWCOMB LAKE ROAD TO CAMP SANTANONI: Good skiing to both Camp Santanoni and Moose Pond.
AUSABLE LAKE ROAD: Sufficient cover even at the start under the thick hemlocks. Some snowmobile traffic along with the foot traffic.
Trail Conditions 101
Trail condition reports are posted frequently during the ski season. The Adirondack backcountry can be a hard place to predict with weather and trail conditions that often change rapidly. We can't offer the same detailed descriptions of trail conditions as groomed nordic centers.