Winds snow conditions?

b.stark

Forever Wandering
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Apr 8, 2015
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Been keeping track best as snotel can help but looking for any real world info on how the winds are looking. Will be doing 4 days out of big sandy in about a week and a half. and if nobody knows I guess I will find out the fun way!
 

Dustin Gent

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Jun 22, 2015
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i would call the ranger station. Some people were headed up there this week, and the ranger told them snow was at around 10,000 feet in the winds (patchy) and tetons were still at 8500 feet.
 

Artemus

I walk
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Haven't been but here are some references you can check. I believe that it is snow free to Big Sandy Lake and all snow above it. People in the north are reporting 4' at upper Bomber Basin by Spider Peak.

Check:
1) The "Wind River Mountains" FB page
2) satellite view every day:
https://worldview.earthdata.nasa.go...7292601,-108.91352345894074,42.16995331042601
3) Snow model:
http://www.nohrsc.noaa.gov/interact...lp=0&no_header=0&snap=1&o6=1&o9=1&o12=1&o13=1

Then average all the results :)
I think the winds and points north of the Uintas are way behind the Uintas because they have had a cool and overcast spring and early summer.
 

Dave

Broadcaster, formerly "ashergrey"
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I think the winds and points north of the Uintas are way behind the Uintas because they have had a cool and overcast spring and early summer.

Definitely true, but also changing very fast with the prevailing warm/dry pattern over the west the last few weeks. I flew over the Winds a month ago and they were incredibly snowy. I'm sure it's a very different story now.
 

Absarokanaut

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From rim on hike to Upper Jade Lake on Monday.
IMG_1317.JPG
 

danger02ward

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Instagram is a good way to see current conditions. Just do a search on the cirque or whatever lake you want to hit and you can see people's recent pictures and posts from that area.
 

Jackson

I like to go outside.
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Instagram is a good way to see current conditions. Just do a search on the cirque or whatever lake you want to hit and you can see people's recent pictures and posts from that area.
That's what I do sometimes too. I also use it to determine how crowded a place usually is. Great resource.
 

b.stark

Forever Wandering
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But I don't WANNA go to instagram!! (Says the petulant grouch)

Basically finding what I thought... still loads of snow. We'll just have to do what we can and probably end up staying low. Would love to move the trip later, but can't due to the schedule of the other people I'm hiking with. Maybe we can convince the hordes of mosquitoes to carry us over the snowed-in passes instead of hiking them...
 

Absarokanaut

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You know the Tetons historically are a LOT better when it comes to bugs. North of Mt. Moran rivals anything in the Winds and the Country when it comes to scenery. A LOT fewer people north of the Range core. I'd also say the Gros Ventre might be a better choice too. I believe it is now tracked up Swift Creek to the Range Crest Divide with Crystal Creek. Apintbrush Divide is of course full of snow and ice but I think you'd find almost anything better than the Winds when it comes to snow right now, they got hammered in May and went into summer like 350% of "normal."
 
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Snow levels in the Winds is minimal below 10 thousand feet. I think you'll be fine. The snowpack in the Tetons and Beartooths is a little bit stronger.
 

Rockskipper

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@Venchka posted this link in another thread and it has tons of info. You can also call them. They have a section on trail conditions. They're in Pinedale and kind of a hub for the Winds.

http://www.greatoutdoorshop.com/

July 3:
Big Sandy Opening continues to be the easiest way to access the high country. As of Friday, the trail leading over Jackass Pass is 90% snow-free to the top of the pass. However, coming down the cirque-side of the pass, one hits snow almost immediately. The picture featured for this report is of the Cirque of the Towers on Friday afternoon. Clear Lake and Big Sandy Lake are open and fishing well. The trail leading to Deep Lake is snowed in almost immediately after leaving the big Sandy Trail. The same goes for the trail going to Miller Lake, Rapid Lake and Temple Lake.
 
Last edited:

Burrito

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Sep 7, 2016
Messages
34
Hey b.stark,

I just saw this post after I posted a trip report from last week (it came up in similar threads). We were there last weekend (1st - 3rd) and going out of Elkhart Park, we encountered snow right around the corner (in patches) and heavy snow past photographer's point. It was pretty striking how much had melted from the 1st to the 3rd on the way out so I'm guessing with this past week being super warm, it has thinned out a lot more.

Obviously, the higher up you go, the more snow you'll encounter. We were in snow the entire 2nd day of our trip...and DEEP snow at that.

Here's the report I posted: https://backcountrypost.com/threads/winds-july-1-3-elkhart-hobbs-lester-pass-pole-creek.6951/

That TR might make it sound like you're walking into an absolute hell by going up there, but I wanted to provide as much accurate information as possible and not sugar coat things at all. I'm not gonna lie, it was rough, hard, and a bit stressful but as long as you have the right gear and are prepared for it, you'll be fine.

The biggest thing is that the temps are so warm up there right now that you'd have to work hard to not enjoy yourself.

I did a trip up there last Oct (after the first snow fall) that was miserably cold (low teens). The trip last weekend was more difficult in other ways, but at least it's warm :)

If you wanna PM me, I'd be happy to give you my phone # and would be more than happy to talk to you about what things are like up there right now.

HTH
 

b.stark

Forever Wandering
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Won't be the first time I've dealt with snow in the winds, but the snow will be much lower. @Burrito saw the trip report you posted earlier, definitely challenging snow and high water that you saw.

From way up high in 2009


I do usually stop at the great outdoors shop before heading into the winds.
 

b.stark

Forever Wandering
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Joined
Apr 8, 2015
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As an update, the Winds seem pretty well opened up from what I experienced, at least if you're experienced with some snow travel. I made the call to turn back at Hailey Pass because of a few circumstances with my group, though I personally had no qualms with what I saw there. In the pass I talked to a guy who was in the midst of a 60ish day hike, starting at the beginning of the month and he was pretty happy with how much better snow had gotten in the past couple weeks. Met lots of people going for Hailey or Texas passes, though never talked to anybody who had actually done Texas. We also heard that Washakie didn't go, though I'm not sure why given how Hailey looked. I'll have pics and TR up sometime in the near future, hopefully.

The mosquitos were as bad as I've ever seen them in the Winds. I rarely wear a headnet but used mine a lot on this trip. At Skull Lake you could practically swim through them.
 
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