If you've been in northern New England over the past week, you may be getting tired of the gray and gloomy weather March has brought us so far. But sunny skies and warm temperatures are on their way for Saturday and Sunday. The Mount Washington Observatory (www.mountwashington.org) is calling for temperatures in the valleys in the upper 40s on Saturday and the mid-40s on Sunday, both days bringing plenty of much-needed sunshine to the region. The higher summits will be cooler, but should also be breaking out of the perpetual cloud cover of the past week. Fine views are likely for anyone skiing, snowshoeing, mountaineering,
|Lion Head and Tuckerman Ravine in the gloom 3.7.2013 |
or ice climbing in the White Mountains this weekend.
The trails are covered with 2-3 ft. of heavy snow, so while snowshoes or skis are recommended for any unbroken or lightly-used trails, light traction will be sufficient for the most popular trails, including the Tuckerman Ravine Trail to Hermit Lake Shelter or to the start of the Lion Head Winter Route. Crampons and an ice axe are still recommended for the Lion Head Winter Route if you're planning to summit Mt. Washington. The Avalanche Advisory posted daily by the Mt. Washington Avalanche Center (www.mountwashingtonavalanchecenter.org) is a vital tool to help you travel safely in avalanche terrain, so check it out online, or stop by the Pinkham Notch Visitor Center to see the latest update before heading into any of the ravines.
The backcountry skiing is still superb in the Whites, and given the forecast, runs down the John Sherburne, Gulf of Slides, or any other ski trail in the region should bring fabulous spring snow conditions. Skiing in Tuckerman Ravine or other steep terrain should be done with caution, as the snowpack could certainly use a boost, hidden dangers exist beneath the snow, and avalanche danger has been considerable.
Stop by the Pinkham Notch Visitor Center if you're in the Whites this weekend. We're happy to answer trail questions or suggest snowshoe hikes or ski runs if you're unfamiliar with the area. Consider staying at Joe Dodge Lodge or The Highland Center for access to ski and snowshoe trails outside your door. Please don't hesitate to give our Reservations Department a call at (603) 466-2727 Monday through Saturday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM.
Happy Trails... I'll see you on the mountain!
Cormac N. Griffin
Backcountry Information Specialist
Pinkham Notch Visitor Center
Appalachian Mountain Club
Labels: alpine skiing, ice climbing, Joe Dodge Lodge, New Hampshire, Pinkham Notch, showshoeing, skiing, snowshoeing, xc skiing