Above-freezing temperatures are expected throughout the week, even at high elevations, which will cause springlike conditions. Expect icy, crusty and fast conditions in the mornings, and softer snow in the afternoons. Folks not as adept at navigating on icy, crusty snow should come out later in the day.
Mud on the trails
Low elevation trails (including Phil’s Trail system, Peterson Ridge, Horse Butte and sections of the Deschutes River Trail) are likely to become muddy in the afternoons. Avoid hiking and biking on muddy trails whenever possible because use can irreparably damage the trail tread and create potholes
Wanoga snoplay Area
The Wanoga Snoplay hill was groomed about a week ago and is relatively smoothed off, but firm currently.
Expect icy and fast conditions in the mornings (start partway up the hill instead of the top to avoid gaining too much speed) and then softening in the afternoons and “becoming a little bit more reasonable."
As the temperatures rise, branches heavily loaded with snow and ice may start dropping “snow bombs" — as much as 50 or 100 pounds each — without warning. Try to stay out of the trees if these “bombs" are coming down with frequency.
It is a holiday weekend for quite a few folks, so expect high use on the trails. Please pay attention to the no-parking zones at the sno-parks. Have a second or even third choice sno-park if you get up too late to find a parking spot.
There is a substantial rain lens in the high elevation snowpack from the rain and freezing rain we received last week. This could be a layer that haunts us with high instability in the form of avalanches later in the season. At any time, backcountry users should take their assessments of stability for potential avalanches.
Go prepared with the 10 essential systems; pack what you might need for injuries or getting lost.
Nearly all trails that are usually groomed are being groomed.
Watch for springlike conditions: Snow depths have been stable for the last couple of weeks but may begin to decrease. There is an inversion weather pattern, which means that higher elevations are even warmer and more springlike.
Virginia Meissner: 30 inches, conditions are good, groomed
Wanoga: 32-36 inches
Swampy Lakes: 40-48 inches
Edison Butte: About 30 inches Dutchman Flat: 68-74 inches