June 2, 2011 Current Conditions

Say No to Summer

Okay, it’s June 2 and I just bought a new pair of skis…for this season. Crazy. (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 5 Comments
May 3, 2011 Portal Road, Snow, Permits Current Conditions

Portal Road, Snow, Permits

Despite the ease of access, the Whitney Portal region has a less than glowing reputation when it comes to backcountry skiing. Perhaps it’s not so much that there’s something wrong with the area, as that there is almost always better skiing to be found elsewhere. Still, I can report that Whitney Portal Road is now (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 3 Comments
April 18, 2011 395 Report (South) Current Conditions

395 Report (South)

Scouted Highway 395 between Olancha and Independence this past weekend. As has been the case the past few years, snow coverage varies greatly depending (I assume) on wind effect history. It appears generally true, once again, that high altitude north faces have been blasted clean. This is not universally the case, but given how much (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 9 Comments
March 21, 2011 Current Conditions


Both Mountain High and Mt. Baldy report 2-3′ of new snow this morning. If you can get to either resort today, I’m guessing you’ll find reason to enjoy yourself. Snow Valley reports 24″ of new snow, but Highway 18 is basically shut down right now, with the dreaded chains-on-all requirement. Mammoth says just under 4′ (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 4 Comments
March 20, 2011 Nothing??? Current Conditions


With apocalyptic rain blasting the L.A. Basin, Mt. Baldy sounded like a disaster in the making, and the drive up to the San Bernardino Mts. sounded like even less fun, so why not buzz up the Palm Springs Tram and hope for some fresh snow? Snow forecasts for the San Jacintos weren’t in the ridiculous (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 1 Comment
March 18, 2011 Current Conditions

Winter Returns (Again)

Our off-again, on-again winter returns this weekend, with a huge forecast that should hopefully turn our thoughts back to snow. Sunday night appears to offer the most potential for snowfall, with huge storm totals being predicted from the Eastern Sierra to SoCal… (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 1 Comment
March 7, 2011 Scouting Telegraph Peak Current Conditions

Scouting Telegraph Peak

Just taking a look at Telegraph Peak’s north face in the San Gabriels this past Saturday. I’ve got an ’04 or ’05 photo showing this same view of Telegraph taken May 15, with huge coverage, which always makes for a good point of comparison. How does this year stack up (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 12 Comments
February 1, 2011 Current Conditions

In the California Sun…

Back home now from the Ski Channel Film Festival and SIA Denver. I have to say, as much as I enjoyed skiing in Colorado, it sure feels good to get back into some California sunshine. Temps were a very balmy 65 degrees or so when I arrived in Denver last week, shifting abruptly to a (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 0 Comments
January 18, 2011 Baldy Bowl Avalanche & Level I SoCal Class Current Conditions

Baldy Bowl Avalanche & Level I SoCal Class

One of the interesting things about Baldy Bowl (via the Ski Hut Trail) is that it’s a high use area that isn’t particularly safe. On any given weekend you’ll find a steady stream of hikers and/or climbers going up the bowl (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 6 Comments
January 11, 2011 An Arizona Sunrise Current Conditions

An Arizona Sunrise

South Face, Agassiz Peak, Flagstaff Arizona (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 1 Comment

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About SierraDescents

When there is snow, SierraDescents is Andy Lewicky's California backcountry skiing and mountaineering website. Without snow, sierradescents becomes an ill-tempered hiking and climbing blog.

Pray for snow.