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
January 3, 2011 Current Conditions

9500 to 1500

Was it really only two weeks ago that I was climbing in heavy rain on the ski hut trail? Snow levels have dropped from an awful 9500′ to near-record 1500′ in Southern California, putting snow where you don’t often see it, and causing travel havoc, including closing the 5 and 15 freeways. It’s enough to (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 8 Comments
December 24, 2010 A White Christmas Current Conditions

A White Christmas

Clear skies and snowy peaks is the Christmas Day forecast here in the Southland. Expect impressive coverage above 9000 feet or so, and ice forests around the snow line. Here’s a shot of current conditions on West Baldy’s face, rising high above downtown—the classic postcard view from Kenneth Hahn State Park. Merry Christmas everyone! (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 4 Comments
December 21, 2010 Current Conditions

Ma Nature Goes Insane

LA Times has a story on how Mother Nature has fooled the forecasters this season. It’s a nice rundown on some of the crazy ups and downs of the end of 2010 in SoCal, including a high temperature of 113° on Sept. 27, a heat wave just a week ago, and of course the Mother (more...)...

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December 20, 2010 A Four Hour (Cold) Shower Current Conditions

A Four Hour (Cold) Shower

There are only so many days in a row I can watch heavy rain pound the pavement outside my apartment. But that stubborn snow level refused to come down. Finally, on Sunday, I decided to take the initiative and go find some snow. I drove up to the parking lot at Manker Flat (or, at (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 6 Comments
December 16, 2010 Current Conditions

Two Front Teeth…

In the What I Want for Christmas department, a little snow would certainly be nice. Here’s one of the forecasts I track: San Jacinto Peak. Okay, before you get too excited, notice how low the snowfall totals are, despite what looks like 5-7 days of precip in a row. This is tracking depressingly close to (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 1 Comment
November 22, 2010 Current Conditions

Snow

Mammoth reports 3-7 feet of snow, with nearly 2′ of new snow in the past 24 hours. Locally, the last few storms have opened up Mountain High and Snow Summit, though on pretty minimal bases. I’m off for the holiday, so have a Happy Thanksgiving, and get out there and find some snow… (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 9 Comments
October 6, 2010 Current Conditions

October Rain

Heavy rain here in the basin—and relatively cold, also. Is it really only October? I’m getting a crazy impulse to grab my skis and head for the high country. Not sure what’s happening elsewhere in the state, but I bet there’s going to be skiable snow up there somewhere… (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 4 Comments
September 27, 2010 Current Conditions

113?

Or was it even hotter? The LA Times reports the official thermometer downtown reached 113° F today, the highest temperature ever recorded (going back to 1877) — and then the thermometer stopped working. Have mercy! (more...)...

Posted in Current Conditions | 0 Comments

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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.