Not much new to report. DEC has not updated the snow depth at Lake Colden, but experience would indicate 6-9 ". Not enough to make Avalanche Pass really skiable. Cascade Lakes are fully frozen with skaters on the ice, so ice on Avalanche Lake and Lake Colden should be crossable. Still pay attention around any inlets or outlets - especially the outlet to Avalanche Lake. Mt. Van Hoevenberg reports 12km of their easier "legacy" trails are open, but after the Olympic trials, there is plenty of snow on the 4 km of competition trails. Unfortunately, no significant new snow in the forecast, but still no thaw that will invalidate the title of this post. Merry Christmas to all and a snowy New Year.
Lake Road to Lower Ausable Lake can now be added to the skiable routes. Excellent conditions on Newcomb Lake Road, and double track was handy to deal with the crowds there Sunday. Boreas parking not plowed as of Sunday, and no use there as of that time.
Additionally, Cascade X-C Ski Center is open of 3 km, but hopes the flurries this week will allow them to open more for the weekend.
Original Sunday morning post:
Good news, we did receive the promised 5-6" of new snow on Saturday and into Saturday night. Is was very fine snow and is actually quite dense, so even with no base many of the smoother trails will be skiable. Newcomb Lake Road to Camp Santanoni will be the best skiing as that road held some base, but Gulf Brook Road to Boreas Ponds, Fish Pond and Hays Brook will also have enough snow to ski. Marcy Dam truck trail will be skiable, but still be aware that there are some rocks that, while covered, still present a hazard on any downhill. Connery Pond to Whiteface Landing probably needs another bit of snow to be really recommended.
Mt. Van Hoevenberg will be working to groom their "Legacy" trails, but the intermediate and expert terrain on the competition trails has remained skiable on man-made snow through this thaw. Cascade X-C Ski Center has yet to report that they are open for skiing. The online report for the Paul Smith's VIC is not very informative regarding new snowfall or grooming, but it appears that most of the trail system is open for skiing.
Finally, the Old Mt. Road and McKenzie Pass sections of the Jackrabbit Trail can probably be negotiated on skis, but great care will be needed on any downhill sections. The shorter Craig Wood and Lake Placid Club sections will be skiable. More information later as we get a chance to check out these trails.
Going forward, temperatures will remain below freezing for all of the coming week, but no significant new snow is in the forecast; but at least it will be a white Christmas with some skiable snow.
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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.