my favorite time is late feb early march. statistically warmer temps but not too warm. Most south facing ice still good. cold enough that sloppy avi less likely. More daylight for longer days without headlamps.
it is all a crap shoot though. you take your chances and play with what you are dealt. plenty of options if less than perfect conditions.
AFAIK, there is no compreshensive guidebook out there. Didn't all the Joshpheson guidebooks go out of print? Maybe someone took up the job but there is a select version out there that gets the good stuff.
snatching defeat from the jaws of victory