4/24. The Last Powder Day of the Season was amazing. We might do it again on Sunday…

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 April 24, 2014

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Random Morning Thoughts

Oh what a day it was yesterday. The powder skiing was epic. I spent so much time in the white room – each second there feels like an eternity of escape from all troubles. And then I came back to Earth and learned that my dear friend Rick Hulett had passed away the previous night. My heart is broken. I have his love for me in my soul to comfort me, but I am so sad. Rick, I miss you. Thank you for being my friend. There are no words to express how much you meant to me.

Hood 2 River Relay

The Hood 2 River Relay is a one-day event on May 31st. This fun and all-inclusive event is designed for almost any level of skill and fitness, yet competitive enough for the hardcore athlete where participants compete in teams, pairs, or individuals to race from the high slopes of Mt. Hood down to the mighty Columbia River. There will be six Legs that consist of; Alpine ski, nordic ski, mountain bike, road bike, road run, boating (kayak/canoe/SUP) and a 500 meter sprint to the finish line after boating. Open to individuals and teams. Visit their website by clicking above for more information. And Pole-Pedal-Paddle, eat your heart out. You got nothin’ on the Hood 2 River!

Mt. Hood Snow Forecast – 5000′
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Mt. Hood Snow Forecast

There was a long and wet period of rain on Mt. Hood last night, but the rain switched back to snow by early morning. We’ll see dropping snow levels today and snow flurries that taper off, becoming orographic in nature after mid-morning. The snow level will be around 5500′ early, 4500′ around 11am and 4000′ in the afternoon, falling to 2000′ by Friday morning. We’ll see .4” water value (WV) between morning and 5pm, mostly early, for 2-4” of new snow, followed by flurries and breaks in the weather overnight. Wind will be SW 45-50 early, slowly falling to 30-35 late in the afternoon.

Friday looks partly cloudy with flurries possible. The flurries will increase after 2pm, with a slight chance of thunder and lightning. The sky will clear overnight. The snow level will be 2000′ early, 3000′ midday and 4000′ in the evening. No measurable accumulation. Wind will be WSW 10 early and WNW 15 in the afternoon.

Saturday starts off clear, quickly becoming partly cloudy (we should see some awesome cloud features Saturday), and then becoming cloudy mid-afternoon with snowfall starting by 5pm. The snow level will be 1500′ early, 3000′ midday and 4000′ in the afternoon, falling to 2500′ by Sunday morning. We’ll see .4-.6” WV between 5pm Saturday and Sunday morning, for 3-6” of new. Wind will be NW 10 early, SW 20 midday, holding overnight.

Sunday brings snow flurries and moderate to strong west wind with the snow level around 2500′.

Gorge Wind

There’s a light east gradient this morning, but that’ll switch around to west pretty quickly. Expect 24-27 from Lyle to Arlington by noon, with a mid-afternoon burst of 26-30 possible from Maryhill to Arlington. The western Gorge sees gusty westerlies at 10-13 or less. Tomorrow starts with light west wind that picks up to W 23-26 in the afternoon from Mosier to Maryhill, possibly getting into the 18-23 range near Hood River. Saturday bring westerlies at 10-15 or less.

Gorge Weather

I have not seen a rainbow in a few days, but I’m thinking today will be the day. As a cold front moves through this morning, leaving us with partly cloudy sky and showers, rainbow chances will skyrocket into the near-certain category. Expect partly cloudy sky and showers for much of the day near Hood River with temps in the upper 40’s early and mid 50’s this afternoon with light to moderate west wind.

Tomorrow looks partly cloudy all day – low clouds in the morning and cumulus in the afternoon as the atmosphere destabilizes a bit. Best chance for rainbows is after 2pm. Temps tomorrow will be in the low 40’s early and mid 50’s in the afternoon with light wind early and moderate wind later. Saturday looks partly cloudy becoming rainy after 4pm. Temps will be in the upper 30’s early and mid 50’s in the afternoon with light west wind.

Road and Mountain Biking

First, the road biking update: According to two people, Cooper Spur Road has been swept of gravel. According to one person, the east side of Red Hill is clear of snow to the top, but when you drop back down into the little valley before the long, flatish section (where I once saw a bear), the road is blocked by snow.

In mountain bike news, you can forget about it. It’s way too muddy out there. If you ride, you’ll damage the trails, and then volunteers will have to clean up after you instead of building new trails. Just because it’s too muddy to ride, though, doesn’t mean you can’t go hike. And I’ve had two people tell me how beautiful the flowers are out at Columbia Hills State Park (about ½ mile east of Horsethief Butte). So, maybe a hike is in order today? Or a trail run?

The Clymb: free membership. Cheap gear. Temira approves. Click to join.

River Levels

The Hood is at 6.1′, the Klickitat is at 2280 cfs, and the White Salmon is at 4.2′.

Events – email me if I’ve missed any outdoor-related events

Tonight would usually be the Post n’ Pint, but it’s canceled because of muddy trail conditions. Rugby people don’t care about wet weather, so they’re still playing at 3:30 in White Salmon. Runners don’t care either – they’re doing intervals at the Event Site at 6:15pm.

Tomorrow through Sunday is a birding festival at Conboy Wildlife Refuge in Trout Lake. It’s the Cherry Festival in The Dalles this weekend. The Bear Springs Trap MTB race is Saturday and Sunday at McCubbins Gulch (likely in dumping snow on Sunday, yuck).

Saturday is the annual weeding party at the Waterfront Park in Hood River, there’s a cleanup on the Sandy River at 8:30 at Lewis and Clark Park, and it’s the Teddy Bear motorcycle parade in The Dalles at 9:45 followed by a poker run on the roads east of The Dalles (not a good day to take your road bike to Petersburg). Sunday is the first swap meet of the season at Windance.

Have an awesome day today!