In keeping with the rugged ethos of the Snow Joke, the weather forecast for this Saturday’s 36th annual running of the race looks impressively wintry.
Weeks of unseasonably warm weather left the course bare and dry as of last week, but with the return of cold weather the last couple of days, snow and ice are back in picture. The National Weather Sevice forecasts snow showers later this week, and an arctic air mass is expected in Seeley Lake for the weekend. Look for overnight temperatures in the single digits Friday, making for a very cold start Saturday morning. The race day high is forecast at 32 right now, with mountain snow showers providing atmosphere suitable for the occasion.
It looks like a few inches of snow will accumulate by Saturday, leaving the course packed and icy, but the coverage should be pretty light and firm. As usual, the drive from points elsewhere will be the hardest part of the weekend, so take it slow and leave plenty of extra time, especially if you’re traveling the passes from the east. We’re expecting around 800 runners this year. It’s shaping up to be a classic!