It appears that spring is finally here as Monday and Tuesday saw the first serious melting. This will continue through the upcoming weekend with temperatures finally hitting 60 on Sunday and continuing into next week. However, there is still a lot of snow yet to melt, so backcountry routes near Lake Placid, Newcomb, Paul Smiths, and Tupper Lake will remain skiable at least through the weekend. Exposed southern slopes will melt out first - even if the adjacent north-facing slope still has two feet of snow.
Lake Colden still has three feet of snow with 4-6 feet remaining above 4,000 feet. Skis or snowshoes will thus continue to be required for all travel in the peaks for at least two more weeks and probably through the end of the month.
With the warming temperatures, no lake ice can be assumed to be safe, and the streams will be going out. Remember that the stream crossed on snow or rocks early in the morning can be an uncrossable raging torrent by the afternoon as temperatures warm and snow melt increases.
This will be likely be the last update for this season as your regular reporter is leaving to spend the next two weeks north of the Arctic Circle in Norway. I thank those of you who have commented on these reports during the season; and don't forget that this site has a "donate" button.
Trail conditions are updated frequently during the season, but always check local weather conditions as well before departing on your trip.
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