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This weekend in the Adirondacks

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John Warren from the Adirondack Almanack takes a look at outdoor recreation conditions around the Adirondacks for this weekend.

Extreme cold weather is forecast through mid-day Saturday and although temperatures will rise as the weekend progresses, it will be windy with very cold wind-chill values, down to 20 to 30 below on summits.

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Reported by

John Warren
Adirondack Correspondent

Snow and ice are present at all elevations. We have a somewhat unusual snow cover situation.  Areas West of Route 30 received about a foot of new snow on Tuesday, and Southern Warren County received about a foot on Thursday.  The High Peaks region has relatively little snow at lower elevations, about 5-7 inches although there is about 16 inches at the Lake Colden Interior Cabin and snow is deeper in the higher elevations and on summits. There is about 8-10 inches at the periphery of the park elsewhere. Snow cover is more substantial, about 10-14 inches, in the lake effect areas of the Western Slopes, in the South Central Adirondacks, and in southern Warren County. Expect to need snowshoes anywhere above about 3000 feet.

Also, expect to encounter blowdown, especially along lesser used trails and in areas of the Northwest Adirondacks that were affected by the ice storm before Christmas. 

Rivers and streams are running at normal levels for this time of year. There is more lake ice this year than has been seen in many years and most small and mid-sized lakes have at least 6 inches of ice. Lake Champlain north of Port Henry and most of Lake George remain open, however.

All of the regions downhill resorts will be open this weekend with excellent conditions and about 60% of their terrain open. The exception is Big Tupper which has not yet opened. Hickory Mountain in Warrensburg is planning to open this weekend, but you should call ahead there to be sure.

All cross country ski areas are now open, and conditions have generally improved, but the better opportunities are outside of the Tri-Lakes - High Peaks region. Conditions in the High Peaks will be thinner and icier, although forecasts are calling for a few inches of snow by Saturday, so there may be some improvement.  A better bet this weekend would be the smoother terrain at Dewey, and the Paul Smith's VIC (which will be grooming this weekend). The best cross country conditions are at Lapland Lake and Garnet Hill, which both have all of their terrain open and plenty of cover.

The Hays Brook and Fish Pond Truck Trails have good cover, although some blowdown. Flatter terrain on the Jackrabbit Trail has been skied, but the snow is thin and the steeper terrain can not be recommend yet. Cover is still too thin at ADK Loj and on the Marcy Dam Truck Trail. The best bet this weekend will be Newcomb which has plenty of cover, and also the Essex Chain Lakes, the Pharaoh Mountain Wilderness, the Lake George Wild Forest, and in the South-Central Adirondacks including the Inlet-Old Forge corridor. Try the Pigeon Lake Wilderness there.

Snowmobile trail conditions improved.  The trails west of Route 30 have about a 6-inch base and are in good to fair condition. Riding is good in Moose River Plains and Perkins Clearing, although the wooded trails are not recommended. Still, the best riding will be in the South Central Adirondacks and in Southern Warren County, where the trails will open with a foot of new snow. Northern Warren County received less snow and trail conditions there will be fair to poor. And remember the possibility of considerable blowdown in areas of the northwestern Adirondacks which were hit by the ice storm.

Those are the local outdoor conditions in the Adirondacks for this weekend, for North Country Public Radio, this is John Warren from the Adirondack Almanack, online at

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