Catskills BC

Posted by: powderbroker

Catskills BC - 12/25/12 09:26 PM

With the big storm rolling in, we might see some areas opening up!

Here's to hoping!!!!!!

Have a happy holidays, all.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 12/25/12 10:16 PM

It's going to have to be a BIG storm. I was at Bellearye yesterday and one of the lifties drove her Jeep Cherokee up Deer Run (long easy slope wraps around from skiers left) and left it parked at the upper lift station. Leeward slopes up high only had about two inches of natural snow.

But, I am ever hopeful none the less.
Posted by: talus

Re: Catskills BC - 12/26/12 05:31 PM

there is NO BC on the east coast!
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 12/26/12 09:07 PM

Originally Posted By: talus
there is NO BC on the east coast!


Sorry you feel that way John. I'm not sure how you define BC, but the Catskills are about to open up for business. Euclid arrives tonight and then gets all personal and stormy with Freja on Saturday as well. laugh

NOAA graphic for tonight through Friday morning.
Posted by: talus

Re: Catskills BC - 12/27/12 02:02 PM

Backcountry would be defined as: least a day to skin back into. So Katadhin is the only thing on the East. everything else is just a ski tour.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 12/27/12 05:42 PM

Originally Posted By: talus
Backcountry would be defined as: least a day to skin back into. So Katadhin is the only thing on the East. everything else is just a ski tour.


So, we'll call that the Talus definition.

However, I'd propose that a ski tour is something we do on skis, back country is where we might do it.

Certainly not the last word in factual knowledge, I do like the wiki definition:

"Backcountry skiing is skiing in the backcountry on ungroomed and unmarked slopes or pistes, including skiing in unmarked or unpatrolled areas either inside or outside of a ski resort's boundaries, sometimes in the woods. Unlike groomed cross-country and alpine skiing, the land and the snow pack are not monitored, patrolled, or maintained."

Which is supported and further defined by these:

http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-backcountry-skiing.htm
http://www.tetonat.com/2010/04/05/defini...country-skiing/

But, to each his own. We'll make due with what we can get in the Catskills, Dacks. wink


Posted by: Mim

Re: Catskills BC - 12/28/12 01:38 AM

Real time snow depth.

Snow analysis by region.
Posted by: franky

Re: Catskills BC - 12/28/12 03:37 AM

hey if the spruceton trail is skinable and skiable by this weekend, please let us know...what are the odds?
Posted by: talus

Re: Catskills BC - 12/28/12 02:09 PM

ahh then it's all frontcountry.
Posted by: oenophore

Re: Catskills BC - 12/28/12 09:28 PM

The original poster used the term BC expecting readers to know what it means. Until reading subsequent posts I didn't know that it is presumably back country. BC suggests Before Christ or British Columbia.

there is NO BC on the east coast!

If Labrador may be deemed east coast, it consists almost entirely of back country.
Posted by: franky

Re: Catskills BC - 12/30/12 08:35 PM

Hey did anyone do any BC today in the cats..please post how the conditions were...
Posted by: crimpy

Re: Catskills BC - 12/30/12 10:47 PM

was snowshoeing at woodland valley today where i guesstimate 14 inches of powder where i was. we didnt gain too much elevation as we followed the water so i gather more up above.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 12/30/12 11:09 PM

Yep, it's game on. Leeward slopes and trails have filled in nicely from the strong western winds last night and today. Any crust from last week is to be found at lower elevations and in wind blown areas. cool
Posted by: franky

Re: Catskills BC - 12/30/12 11:49 PM

Leeward slopes??? Im thinking of skiing up spruceton trail or slide mtn. Tomorrow, any thoughts?
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 12/31/12 01:37 AM

Leeward slopes, the opposite of windward. The snow deposits on the leeward side after blowing off the windward side. The lower portions of the Spurceton Trail will more than likely have a few thin spots due to wind, but not to worry. The upper sections should have plenty of snow. That said, Hunter Mtn Snowbowl rents snowshoes out to people, then allows them to take the lift to the top of the ski area, where they march en masse 9/10s of a mile to intersect the trail you'll be skiing on, be prepared for crowds of clueless individuals who will not have any idea what to do when you come sliding down the trail in their general direction. Or, the ski area patrons who will have also hiked out to ride down through the S-curves past the John Rob Leanto and then down towards the base of Hunter's West Side lifts, where they will attempt to re-enter the ski area without getting caught. Good luck and let us know how it all went.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 12/31/12 10:15 PM

Short drive today as I headed up the road to the Awosting Preserve. Got two laps in up and down what is one of the best and longest descents in our home range. Four+ inches of freshies over a good base on the network of carriage roads that switchback their way up towards Margaret Cliff and Spruce Glen. Lots of mellow downhill cruising and a good workout on the up track. The plentiful post holeing from the daily dog walkers disappeared in a mile or two of the car, leaving some good sliding and well set up track.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 01/04/13 11:26 PM

The red blazed Huckleberry Trail off of the Hill Rd trail head to blue blazed Dry Brook Ridge has offered up the goods these past few days. A small number of crag rats, made the drive up to Margaretville for a 6.6 mile tour of the ridge. Great pow up top of this 3000'+ ridge line. The lower third of a mile is the skier's crux as the fast descent cuts through an old pine plantation. Some glade shots to be had on either side of the trail, but a few shallow rocks, logs and other surprises, prompted some face plants etc. Don't be discouraged by the apparent large number of snow shoe tracks close to the bottom, they all turn around before the ridge is gained.

Any more tours on this trail will require some more snow for that lower section, but the ridge had plenty of freshies and was a pleasant way to pass the day.
Posted by: powderbroker

Re: Catskills BC - 01/07/13 11:24 PM

Went to the dacks last weekend instead. Certainly open for business up there! Thanks for the snow depth info. At least there's some kick and glide around if not downhill. Viva Winter!
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 01/08/13 12:37 AM

Coverage in the Cats has been more than adequate depending on location. Another crew of crag rats joined me for Eagle Mtn on Sunday. 8+ miles round trip car to summit. Still a few obstacles to worry about if you don't keep the skis flat, but what's a few face plants and yard sales among friends. Friday's weather report does not bode well for skiers, but the ice monkeys won't mind the rain/melt/freeze that's coming. wink
Posted by: nicholsandrew

Re: Catskills BC - 02/14/13 05:39 PM

Any word on trails such as Spruceton or Bearpen? It does not seem as though the last storm tracked inland enough, but I hope I am wrong.

Thanks! ajn
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 02/15/13 12:03 AM

Originally Posted By: nicholsandrew
Any word on trails such as Spruceton or Bearpen? It does not seem as though the last storm tracked inland enough, but I hope I am wrong.

Thanks! ajn


Can't say for sure about Bearpen but nearly everywhere else it was thin and rocky on Sunday, certainly more so now. Bearpen may be OK, or the snow mobiles have eaten it all up. All that snow everywhere else to the east was much less through out the Catskills and there was little to no base underneath. frown
Posted by: nicholsandrew

Re: Catskills BC - 02/15/13 02:32 PM

Thanks! That is exactly what I feared but the confirmation is very appreciated. Sigh, more running to try and stay in touring fitness.

Hope we have one or two more shots of winter before spring, ajn
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 03/03/13 09:14 PM

The northern Catskills have been getting some freshies as of late. A quick tour of Bear Pen this morning offered up some fine skiing today, even though the local sled heads had done a good job of tearing up some terrain, we found enough fresh snow to have a good time out on the hill. Snow showers over the last few days and six inches over last Wednesday and Thursday have laid a good base even with the snowmobile tracks.
Posted by: pda

Re: Catskills BC - 03/04/13 04:19 PM

Blackhead range had 14+ on the ground this weekend (Big Hollow side).
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 03/05/13 12:52 AM

Originally Posted By: pda
Blackhead range had 14+ on the ground this weekend (Big Hollow side).


14" base or new snow?

I've heard or read reports that most of the Catskill Peaks have at least that along summits and ridgelines, but still bony down low. Bear Pen had some of the best coverage all the way to the car door in at least the last three seasons. Good to know that other peaks are beginning to come into some semblance of winter coverage.
Posted by: Mike Rawdon

Re: Catskills BC - 03/05/13 10:55 AM

North Lake campground had close to 14" this past Sunday. But 13" of that was like concrete.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 03/07/13 12:44 PM

Originally Posted By: Mike Rawdon
North Lake campground had close to 14" this past Sunday. But 13" of that was like concrete.


Yep, seems like the case throughout the range. An adequate base above 2000 ft, dry as a bone down low.
Posted by: pda

Re: Catskills BC - 03/07/13 04:21 PM

Well it was a little less at the TH (maybe 8") but increased on the way up and maxed at both Blackhead and Black Dome summits. Unlike DP the previous week, which got thinner up top. Of course, the Hollow is protected and west/north facing, so that may explain more snow generally over there.

Looks like a new dusting underway right now.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 03/08/13 08:59 PM

How was the skiing on Blackhead and Black Dome? Was there sufficient cover with that 8"? With the current dump we should be in good shape this week baring any extreme warmth or the evil "r" word.
Posted by: pda

Re: Catskills BC - 03/08/13 09:21 PM

I was snowshoeing, but the ski conditions looked good to me last week. There was a crust about 3 inches down but no real ice. We were breaking virgin trail across Blackhead. With the new snow, should be even better. Get out there tomorrow!
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 03/08/13 10:25 PM

Originally Posted By: pda
.... Get out there tomorrow!
Thanks for the condition report PDA, but back to work tomorrow. Sunny, mid 40s to mid 50s over the next few days, we'll have a guick corn cycle then full on spring melt. Next opportunity to ski for me, may mean heading further north later in the week.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 03/23/13 09:38 PM

Could this be the last day in the Catskill BC? I don't think so. Three crag rats hit Balsam Mtn today from Rider Hollow. It was expected to find some thin cover under a grove of hemlocks half way to the ridge between Balsam and Haynes, but everywhere else was good to go. We dropped down on the Haynes side of the ravine enticed by what looked like a specacular glade on the side opposite the up trail. Lots of saplings, and whips etc. But, along with the rest of the trail a real hoot from summit to car with great snow conditions for nearly all of it. The downside, the stream crossings are too many and the water was flowing.
Posted by: pda

Re: Catskills BC - 03/28/13 08:24 PM

Thanks Rickster, I was hoping for snow on Balsam Mtn Saturday, but I will rethink.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Catskills BC - 03/29/13 01:06 AM

There is a strong chance there will be snow enough at Balsam, but be prepared to boot some when it gets thin down low. The only real challenge will be the numerous stream crossings. Big advantage with modern plastic ski boots, just walk across the shallows, as long as it doesn't go over the boot tops, your golden.

I and a friend did Vly today, just east of Bearpen. The first mile from Jaeger Rd, off of RT. 3 is mud and dirt. Then great coverage to the summit and back along the old tote roads and eventually the hiker's herd path. We also explored some of the tote roads on the north slope of the peak, but they abruptly stopped, leaving us with a horribly steep and tightly wooded bushwhack. However, snow coverage was good with pockets of pow here and there, but mostly wet loose snow. I also did Sherrill two days ago from Shaft Rd off of RT. 42, and found the same conditions with a bit more powder as it was snowing at the time.

Enjoy it while you can, this snow cover is not long for this world.