Well it’s been an enjoyable run of atmospheric awesomeness, but today the bill finally comes due. Between rain bands spiraling up from Nicholas to the south, and thunderstorms firing up from the west, the mountain is in the crosshairs to see the return of sour skies this afternoon. Leading up to the action, the mountains should see plenty of cloud cover. Winds are expected to remain relatively light which is good, and temps seem to be holding steady with lows in the bottom 50s and highs in the mid 60s. This is the beginning of a new pattern in which rain chances are going to have a presence clear through the weekend, so come prepared for a wet trek at some point during one’s journey to and from the summit. It continues to look more and more like summer is on the way out around the lodge, as trees shed their first leaves and the dense floral patches brown and wilt. Soon the slopes of the Smokies will put on their annual display of vivid color. Hard to believe we’re already halfway through the month and with only ten weeks remaining in the season!