Welcome back to the Mountain Conditions Summaries. It feels almost like summer today but it has been a long cool spring and in the Valleys and the Mountains it really feels more like early May than late May.
Skiing is still possible and even reasonable at times on the Icefields and in most Alpine features. Snow and ice climbing conditions are also potentially good. The caveat being that as always in the spring you need a cold, clear night to get the kind of freeze you can trust.
It's been a slow start to the winter season. Most people I've spoke to are OK with that. Often when you get big dumps of snow early season it results in a basal weak layer that causes problems later on. Of course, predicting what will happen in a week or two is usually futile, let alone in a month or two. But so far so good.
It's been the fall that keeps on giving in the Rockies and Columbia mountains. Another week of nice weather meant activities like rock climbing were still possible. Ice climbs have continued to form and although it's early season still the early performers in the high cold places like Storm and Ranger Creek are in pretty early season good condition.
Much of October seems to have come as a consolation prize for enduring several weeks of smoke this summer. It looks like this will be coming to an end over the next few days.
The unseasonably warm temperatures continue on Friday, with freezing levels rising as high as 3000m. The western edge of the Columbia Mountains will see precipitation starting midday Friday and lasting through the weekend. The farther east and south you go, the higher the likelihood of drier conditions. Precipitation amounts and timing vary significantly by region.
Although it’s officially been Fall for some weeks now, we are really settling into the Coastal autumn routine with regards to weather and overall mountain conditions. We seem to exist by the hour, with heavy rain at one point followed by sunny periods the next, bookended by pre-frontal winds and post-frontal “shmoo.” Heat waves and multi-month droughts seem long forgotten, existing only ephemerally in nostalgic memories.