Yes, It’s April, But Don’t Put Away Skis Yet

Carol MacKinnon Fox summits Mount Van Hoevenberg on skis. Photo by Phil Brown.
Carol MacKinnon Fox summits Mount Van Hoevenberg on skis. Photo by Phil Brown.

It may be April, but there’s still skiing to be had in the backcountry. On Tuesday morning I skied to the top of Dewey Mountain outside Saranac Lake and enjoyed a fun run down in virtually midwinter conditions.

Last weekend, Carol MacKinnon Fox and I skied over the summit of Mount Van Hoevenberg and found plenty of snow on the descent. There also was plenty of snow last weekend on the Mr. Van Trail in the High Peaks Wilderness.

I hear the conditions at higher elevations were fantastic. The Adirondack Ski Touring Council reports there is still five to six feet of snow at 4,000 feet.

Dewey Mountain summit on April 1.

This morning, the temperature was hovering near zero in Saranac Lake. On the ungroomed trails near the top of Dewey, the snow was unbreakable crust, covered with a little light powder from a few days ago. It made for good, fast skiing.

Over the next few days, we can expect to lose some of our snow, especially at the lower elevations. Temperatures are forecast to rise into the fifties on Thursday and Friday, with a chance of rain each day. Over the weekend, it will be colder, with the high temperatures near Saranac Lake forecast to hover around freezing.

Of course, winter will come to an end sometime this month, but snow will remain in the High Peaks longer than in the lowlands. If you’re willing to carry your skis, you’ll find skiing.



About Phil Brown

Phil Brown edited the Adirondack Explorer from 1999 until his retirement in 2018. He continues to explore the park and to write for the publication and website.

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  1. Marty Plante says

    For those who just can’t put down their skis, the Central Adirondacks also have good conditions. Yesterday, I skied the new OK Slip Falls trail south of Indian Lake in perfect spring conditions. The warm weather and rain has softened the crust into loose granular. There was 12 inches of coverage in the woods and 8 on the trail, with no ice, hardpack or bare spots.

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