As I was riding to the office this morning I noticed the weather has recently been getting cooler rather quickly. This made me think of how important it is to pay attention to the weather when in the backcountry. You don’t have to be a meteorologist to see what the weather is doing to be able to predict what might be coming your way. Some simple things that I do when trying to make my predictions is to gain knowledge of the current area I am in. That means I try to do research about the seasonal norms. Does it usually rain this time of year? What is the normal wind direction? What is the average temperature? Next, I usually look at what the weather is currently doing. Are there obvious signs of rain in the area such as a dark sky or thunder clouds? Has the temperature changed, is it getting warmer or colder? Has the wind direction changed or increased in speed? Comparing the current weather conditions with the seasonal norms can be a tool to use when making decisions on the trail. Being aware of what is going on with the weather is better in preparing for a possible storm and also enhances the experience of being in nature.