Trip Season coming to an End
2019-03-17 17:14:47.000 – Adam Gill, Weather Observer/IT Specialist
As we head into mid-March, our winter trip season is coming to an end. This year has been really fun with all the groups that have come up to spend time with the summit staff and learn about what we do. This year many of the trips got very lucky seeing a variety of weather from magnificent sunrises to howling winds, topping out at 171 mph for one lucky trip! I would like to thank everyone who came up to the summit this winter and helping support what we do!
We do have a few climbing trips left over the next few weeks but snow cat trips will be done on Monday with our last Day trip. Temperatures are starting to creep up and with a high sun angle, snow and ice are melting off of the summit on sunny days even if the temperature is still below freezing. It is only a matter of time until we will be back to truck and van for summit shift changes as well!
Now it is only mid-March here so winter is not quite over yet for the summit even though the valleys will start to see warmer temperatures and most of the snow will melt over the next few weeks. We usually will see regular snow storms into Mid-May, sometimes having our biggest snowstorms, like in May of 2017 where we received 33 inches of snow! We will start to lose our snow pack though as more frequent warm ups occur along with rain becoming more frequent. The lower part of the mountain will melt first so usually starting in late March or early April, we park the snow cat part way up the mountain and drive up before moving all of our gear into the cat. Over the next few weeks, the snow cat will slowly be moved up the mountain until the road is completely melted out then it will be truck and van all the way to the summit.
My favorite season is winter so it is always sad to see all the snow melt. The one thing that I do look forward to is to be able to get up and down the mountain quickly. The longer days are nice as well because it allows time to get outside for a bit after the shift is done.
Adam Gill, Weather Observer/IT Specialist