Apr 13, 2012 — John Warren, of the Adirondack Almanack, joins us Friday mornings with information about local outdoor and back-country conditions.
Temperatures continue to be in the normal range for this time of year. Trails are a patchy mixture of snow, ice, and mud. Areas in the High Peaks above 2,000 feet received considerable snow earlier this week and there have been reports of a foot or more of new snow above 3500 feet. A few die hards even got some backcountry slide skiing in.
While spring conditions are the rule elsewhere, if you are headed into the high backcountry, be prepared for winter conditions, wear waterproof footwear and gaiters, and bring snowshoes and crampons.
And a reminder that mud season is a great time to choose lower elevation trails outside the High Peaks rather than adding to the damage caused by hiking on wet and muddy trails.
With the notable exception of the High Peaks region where snow melt continues to make some low water crossing impassible, especially in the afternoons, the levels of streams throughout the region are well below normal for this time of year.
The lack of winter snow cover and a record-breaking warm and dry March, have resulted in abnormally dry conditions, especially in the Eastern and Southern Adirondacks.
Despite this week’s precipitation, the fire danger remains elevated at MODERATE and dry conditions this weekend could bring that to HIGH. More than 20 wildfires have been reported in the Adirondack region so far this year, so be sure campfires are out by drowning them thoroughly with water and remember that the annual spring ban on open burning remains in effect until May 15.
The gates remain shut on roads that are typically closed during mud season including in the Jessup River, Moose River Plains, and Saranac Lakes Wild Forests, the Lake Lila Road in the Whitney Wilderness, those in the Perkins Clearing/Speculator Tree Farm Conservation Easement Lands, and in the Lake George Wild Forest, although the Shelving Rock and Jabe Pond roads have reopened.
The Jay Mountain Road between Jay Mountain Wilderness and the Hurricane Mountain Wilderness remains impassable due to mud.
A number of climbing routes remain closed to protect nesting peregrine falcons. Those include all routes at Moss Cliff in the Wilmington Notch, on Upper and Lower Washbowl Cliffs in the Chapel Pond area, and most routes on the Main Face of Poke-o-Moonshine.
Also, remember that water temperatures are very cold and everyone in boats under 21 feet in length are required to wear a personal flotation device through May 1st.
And finally this week, a reminder that visitors to the High Peaks are required to use bear canisters, and their use is recommended throughout the Adirondacks to discourage black bear encounters.
Those are the local outdoor conditions in the Adirondacks for this weekend, for North Country Public Radio, this is John Warren from the Adirondack Explorer’s Adirondack Almanack, online at www.AdirondackAlmanack.com.