The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is advising backcountry users in the Adirondacks, especially the High Peaks region, of potential avalanche risk following mild temperatures and high winds. Avalanche danger increases during thaws when warmer weather and rain melt existing snowpack and snow becomes increasingly unstable as it undergoes freeze/thaw cycles.
Backcountry hikers, downhill skiers, snowboarders, and other visitors who may traverse slides or steep, open terrain should be aware of and prepared for avalanche conditions. Avalanches can occur in any situation where snow, slope, and weather conditions combine to create instability in the snowpack. While the majority of steep, open terrain is found in the High Peaks region of the Adirondacks, avalanche-prone terrain is found on mountains throughout the Adirondack Mountains. Skiers, snowboarders, and hikers should assess their own experience level before going into the backcountry and should be equipped with avalanche safety tools and knowledge, including participation in an avalanche safety course.