Good morning fellow mountain dwellers,
Blessed to wake up to another beautiful morning above 6,000 feet! At the moment, I am seeking warmth in the kitchen, promising sounds of percolating coffee fill the room. Whistling winds race through structures with ease, gently shaking the evergreen trees in the process. Looking behind me, inverted clouds conceal the valley floor, strips of pink begin to turn yellow-orange as the morning progresses. Currently, it is a hospitable 18 degrees outside with clear skies above and cloudy skies below. There is still a 3" blanket of snow around the top, with trace amounts at the bottom as well. Wonderful day to be out and about in the park in my opinion! Clear skies should continue throughout most of the day, with snow showers likely this evening. Predicted amounts range anywhere from 2 to 5 inches, so I'm crossing my fingers. At the moment, all roads leading to the base of the mountain are open, so all trails are accessible. Those planning on tackling the relentless climb should expect to see snow and ice along the way, with thick sheets of ice residing towards the summit. That being said, bring your crampons and a taste for discovery. Discoveries lie around each corner, so keep your eyes peeled along the way! Hopefully you all will get to experience this beautiful cloud inversion! There's no telling how long the white sea will stick around, so come check it out before it's too late! In my recent explorations, I have found that trees are down on every trail. Some more threatening than others, this combined with sheeys of ice make for a slower ascent. Give yourself some extra time to climb up and down this massive hill, and be sure to check out the large icicles towards the top!
Yesterday's high was comfortable 21 degrees, with a substantial low of 15. Looking into the near future, high temps seem to be in the upper 20s, with clear skies predicted for most of the week. Be sure to check the current weather and road conditions before entering the park. Conditions can change rapidly without prior knowledge or warning, so make sure you are informed!
We started out the day bombarded by thick clouds and another fresh coating of white powder. At around noon, sun beams penetrated the clouds within minutes, revealing a crystal clear blue sky! Dusted white evergreens against a vibrant blue, a treat indeed! An afternoon stroll around the neighborhood was in order, so I suited up and hit the trail. Burning sea of clouds beneath me, I admired the "open water," looking out towards the horizon. Only the highest peaks were visible at the time, with small windows opening up periodically. Heavily-frosted trees emerged from the encasing clouds, glistening in broad daylight. As the day progressed, "water levels" crept lower and lower, exposing the valley floor over time. Sunset grew close, and I was anxious to get up there. Each step was intimate, but rather obnoxious at the same time. Deafening crunches resonated in my ear drums, this mountain was an ice cube. Silence filled the air as i stopped to examine the forest. White powder resided in every nook and cranny, with peculiar tracks etched into the ground. I immediately stopped fantasizing about the future, channeling my focus on this very moment. The finer details on this mountain are pretty surreal! Slowing down, soaking it all in for a brief moment, I felt intrigued. Solitude and silence intertwined, hard to come across in this day and age..."
Welcome to the official blog of LeConte Lodge. We hope you find the information provided here both helpful and enjoyable. Thank you for visiting the site, and we hope to see you on the mountain!