GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Meteorological spring has arrived, but we live in Michigan so we can usually squeeze out another snowmobile and ski trip or two when the weather cooperates. It certainly appears it will as we head into mid-March.
Here’s where we stand with snow depths in the Upper Peninsula:
There has been virtually no change from last week;s snowcover across Michigan (yet). The rain and warm temperatures this weekend will wipe out a good chunk of the snow across the northern Lower Peninsula.
Snow depths for northern Michigan:
U.P. snow depths, especially along M-28 and north, will be sufficient enough to weather much of the warmth and precipitation. Some locations, such as the central and western U.P. will actually receive accumulating snow.
Below, find snow depths for the U.P. I’ve decided not to include the snow depths across lower Michigan because of the significant snowmelt that will occur.
- Soo: 32
- Paradise: 31
- Grand Marais: 41
- Manistique: 20
- Munising: 34
- Marquette: 30
- Houghton: 30
- Calumet: 37
- Escanaba: 7
- Painesdale: 51
- Big Bay: 25
This time of year, you can occasionally ski without winter jackets. Saturday looks like one of those days.
Spring warmth will be felt through much of the lower. There will be a very sharp temperature gradient near the Straits of Mackinac.
By Sunday, we will be on the back side of the storm system, with any rain changing to snow across the U.P.
Temperatures will rapidly fall.
It will be windy Sunday.
SCHUSS MOUNTAIN: Excellent ski conditions are expected Friday. Saturday will bring a chance of rain showers and warmer temperatures. Don’t forget about Schuss Mountain’s annual Slush Cup March 12 between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. For over 40 years, it has provided everyone who attends fun and laughs.
TIMBERIDGE: The best skiing will be Friday. You’ll be able to ski or tube without a jacket Saturday. 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tubing is open Friday 1 p.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Don’t forget to take advantage of 9 full lanes of tubing fun as well.
BITTERSWEET: The best skiing will be Friday. You’ll be able to ski or tube without a jacket Saturday. Open Friday 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. and Sunday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
CANNONSBURG: The best skiing will be Friday. You’ll be able to ski or tube without a jacket Saturday. You can carve up the slopes Friday from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. and from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Tubing (reservations only) is open Friday 12 p.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
If you like snowmobile racing, put March 25-26 on your calendar as Cannonsburg will be hosting U.S. Air Force Snowcross Nationals sponsored by Fox Powersports.
CABERFAE: Friday and Saturday will be the best days to ski. Open Friday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday 9 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Don’t forget to put the Winter Carnival on you calendar for March 19th. Four lifts are open servicing 30 slopes.
CRYSTAL: Friday and Saturday appear to be the best skiing. Extra fun will be found on the mountain as they will host Mardi Gras at the Mountain this weekend! Wear your best gold, purple and green attire for a chance to win Crystal Mountain swag, find the skiing Jester on the hill, listen to live music and enjoy a special BBQ lunch. Open Friday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
BOYNE MOUNTAIN: Friday will represent the best skiing with a few ran showers possible Saturday. Windy and colder Sunday. Open Friday and Saturday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday. 10/12 lifts are open servicing 51/60 trails. If you have kids the Mountain will be hosting the Kid’s Festival Weekend.
BOYNE HIGHLANDS: Ditto above. Open Friday and Saturday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday. 8/10 lifts are open servicing 100% of runs. If you like to race Highlands is hosting the Highlander Friends and Family Race.
NUB’S NOB: Friday will represent the best skiing with a few ran showers possible Saturday. Windy and colder Sunday. All lifts and slopes are open Friday through weekend from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. so groomers can freshen up slopes and resuming again at 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Nubs will be hosting this Friday the GS on Scarface at 7:00 PM.
SOUTHERN LOWER MICHIGAN
There’s a chance next weekend. Look at my report below.
There’s actually decent trail reports in some spots in the northern Lower. My suggestion, if that’s where you want to snowmobile, do it Friday. Saturday will be warm to the point that I expect the trails to become unrideable. Plus, you don’t want your sled to overheat.
Recent reports have all the trails rated as good to very good with the exception of Trail 8 south of Paradise due to a broken down groomer. Another groomer was sent that way to help. I was up there last weekend and Trail 8 was good to very good south of Paradise to Brimley. I did not ride Trail 8 north to Pine Stump. The other group we stayed with rode it Paradise all the way to Grand Marais and said 60% was not very good. I also rode Trail 45 to the Lower Falls of the Tahquamenon River and it was brutal rough getting there but ultimately worth it. We then rode to Hulbert and that was good although the higher sun angle is doing it’s dirty work on the roads with a lot of exposed asphalt. Your carbides will take a beating at times.
There’s two decent chances of accumulating snow across the state. Still looks like winter conditions will hold strong through next weekend.
The medium-range outlook certainly suggests that the groundhog will be correct forecasting six more weeks of winter.
I think March overall is going to be a good month for those who want an extension to the snowmobile and ski season.