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Originally published March 6, 2014 at 4:51 PM | Page modified March 6, 2014 at 5:38 PM

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Rain expected in mountains as temperatures warm

Skiers will get a break next week when cooling trend arrives. For now, best bet is Mount Baker.

Seattle Times staff reporter

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The recent mixed bag of weather brought heavy snow or rain and gusty winds throughout the Cascades, and little change is expected in the days ahead.

Skiers and snowboarders will see a break Friday with mostly cloudy skies laced with a few rain or snow showers, and a freezing level hovering between 4,500 to 6,000 feet.

In general, conditions at most areas are expected to deteriorate heading in the weekend. Gore-Tex will be essential gear as warm air will enter the region, pushing snow levels up 7,000 to 9,000 feet, followed by heavy rain and wet snow. The good news is that a gradual cooling trend should arrive Sunday and Monday.

The best option for those seeking out semi-snowy conditions will be Mount Baker where 4 to 8 inches of snow could fall Saturday (heavy rain at times Saturday evening) followed by another 2 to 4 inches on Sunday.

A high avalanche warning remains in effect in the backcountry. Details:

The good news is snow base levels remain above average at all ski areas, and the extended outlook looks fine heading into next month and beyond. In the meantime, wax the boards for warm snow to plow through the mushy conditions.

Events and activities

• The Outdoor For All Foundation Spree at Alpental is 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday with ski and board demos. Cost is $59 without lift ticket and $89 with lift ticket. Also, the Park Crew at Summit Central Park built a new large jump feature, plus five jibs were added. Details:

• The Junior International Freeskiers and Snowboarders Association Competition is Friday through Sunday. Details:

• The TransWorld TransAm Snowboarding Competition is 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday at Stevens Pass Resort’s Top Phlight Terrain Park. Cost is $15, and deadline is 2 p.m. Friday. Details:

• The Battle for Gnar’nia is 11 a.m. Sunday at Mission Ridge. Cost is $10, and registration starts at 8:30 a.m. Details:

• The Lake Wenatchee State Park offers groomed cross-country ski trails at South Park (12 kilometers), Nason Ridge (20), North Park (5.3) and Chiwawa (8). Lower Nason, North Park and South Park were groomed Thursday; Chiwawa was groomed Monday; Upper Nason was groomed Sunday. Snow base is 35 inches. Sno-Park Permits are required to access the trails. Details: 509-763-3101.

• The Liftopia National Play Hooky & Ski Week ends Friday with special bargain lift rates at many Washington and Oregon resorts. Details:

• At the Leavenworth Winter Sports Club, the Icicle River Trail is groomed and open with 8 kilometers; the golf course with 8 kilometers, not groomed; waterfront park with 3 kilometers, not groomed; and Ski Hill with 7 kilometers, not groomed. Ski Hill and Tubing Park are open 3 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday and Friday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekends. Snow base depth is 25 inches. The Nissebakken Tele Race is 3:30 p.m. Sunday at Ski Hill. Details: 509-548-5115 or

Ski conditions
Summit West, Snoqualmie4-10 p.m. Friday; 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday; 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday; closed Monday-Thursday100”
Summit Central, Snoqualmie 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and Monday-Friday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday100”
Summit East, Snoqualmie 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday-Sunday; closed Monday-Friday100”
Alpental, Snoqualmie9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday-Saturday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday and Tuesday-Thursday; closed Monday111-185”
Nordic Center, Snoqualmie 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday-Sunday; closed Monday-Thursday
Mount Baker Ski Area 9 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. daily, hours depend on snow/weather conditions 157-190”
Crystal Mountain 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily 60-118”
Stevens Pass 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday-Saturday; until 6 p.m. Sunday; until 4 p.m. Monday-Thursday123-158”
White Pass 8:45 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily; Nordic Center reopens Saturday58-146”
Mission Ridge Ski & Board9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday-Monday and Wednesday-Thursday; closed Tuesday44-60”
49 Degrees North Mountain9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday-Tuesday; closed Wednesday-Thursday60-101”
Mount Spokane Ski Area 9 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday; closed Monday-Tuesday57-94”
Ski Bluewood 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday-Sunday; hours depend on snow /weather conditions58-90” or 206-464-8780

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