Recent snow and cold weather have created good conditions for winter outdoor recreation in the Adirondack backcountry, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos announced today. Visitors should be prepared with proper clothing and equipment for snow, ice, and cold to ensure a safe and enjoyable winter experience.
“Now that snow has arrived in the Adirondacks, visitors can take advantage of all the winter recreation opportunities in the park,” Commissioner Seggos said. “However, winter can also present dangerous-even perilous-conditions to the unprepared. DEC advises visitors exploring the backcountry to dress for cold weather and use snowshoes and skis to navigate trails where appropriate.”
Snow depths currently range from four to six inches across the central and northwestern portions of the Adirondacks. Eight to 12 inches of snow can be found across the southern and northeastern portions of the Adirondacks. In the High Peaks, snow depths range from 24-36 inches above 3,000 feet, requiring the use of snowshoes. Ice is present on exposed outlooks and summits above tree line. The National Weather Service NERFC Snow Page provides detailed maps depicting current snow depths and forecasts.
DEC recommends visitors to the backcountry carry snowshoes and use them when snow depths warrant. Snowshoes or skis ease travel on snow and prevent “post holing,” which can cause sudden falls resulting in injuries and create hazardous trail conditions for other users. Ice crampons and traction devices should be carried on all hikes for use on icy portions of the trail including summits and other exposed areas.
All seasonal access roads are closed to motor vehicle traffic. These roads will reopen after the spring mud season upon completion of maintenance and repair work. Seasonal access roads designated as snowmobile trails will be opened to snowmobile traffic as snow depths allow.