Avalanche Forecast

Issued: Jan 8th, 2024 4:00PM

The alpine rating is moderate, the treeline rating is moderate, and the below treeline rating is low. Known problems include Persistent Slabs and Wind Slabs.

Avalanche Canada ejones, Avalanche Canada


Soft snow will make for good turns but use caution on steep, open slopes due to buried weak layers.

Back off if you observe any signs of instability, such as avalanches or whumpfs.




Avalanche Summary

On Saturday near Kispiox, size 1.5 avalanches were triggered by machines on steep cut banks at treeline, 60 and 80 cm deep.

Last week, backcountry users experienced whumpfs in the Babines, Grizzly Plateau & Hudson Bay Mountain.

These avalanches and the whumpfing are suspected to be failures of the buried surface hoar layers detailed in the Snowpack Summary. These observations suggest that humans could trigger avalanches where these layers remain intact.

Snowpack Summary

20 to 40 cm of soft snow exists in areas sheltered from the wind. At upper elevations and exposed areas, this snow could be wind-affected from previous winds. Below 1500 m new snow overlies a melt-freeze crust.

Two or more preserved surface hoar layers can be found buried between 40 cm and 80 cm deep. These layers are most prominent at treeline and below treeline elevations above 1200 m, but they've also been observed in some alpine locations.

Near Ningunsaw, there may be a crust 100 cm deep that could act as a weak layer.

Snowpack depths at treeline vary across the region with generally deeper amounts (~150 cm) in the west and shallower (~80 cm) in the east.

Weather Summary

Monday Night

Cloudy with 5 to 10 cm of snow, southeast alpine wind 20 to 30 km/h, treeline temperature -10 °C.


Mostly cloudy with trace snow, north alpine wind 20 to 30 km/h, treeline temperature -12 ºC. 


Mostly cloudy with trace snow, north alpine wind 10 km/h, treeline temperature -15 ºC. 


Mostly sunny with no precipitation, north alpine wind 40 to 50 km/h, treeline temperature -25 ºC. 

More details can be found in the Mountain Weather Forecast.

Terrain and Travel Advice

  • Approach steep open slopes at and below treeline cautiously, buried surface hoar may exist.
  • Look for signs of instability: whumphing, hollow sounds, shooting cracks, and recent avalanches.
  • Watch for newly formed and reactive wind slabs as you transition into wind affected terrain.


Persistent Slabs

An icon showing Persistent Slabs

Several buried surface hoar layers may be found 40 to 80 cm deep. These layers only seem to be a problem at elevations above 1200 m.

Near Ningunsaw, it may be possible to trigger slabs that fail on a weak layer 100 cm deep.

Aspects: All aspects.

Elevations: All elevations.



Expected Size

1 - 2.5

Wind Slabs

An icon showing Wind Slabs

In exposed areas, north winds may transport soft snow into thin but reactive slabs today.

Aspects: East, South East, South, South West, West.

Elevations: Alpine, Treeline.



Expected Size

1 - 1.5

Valid until: Jan 9th, 2024 4:00PM