Avalanche Forecast

Issued: Mar 19th, 2023 4:00PM

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

Avalanche Canada TH, Avalanche Canada


Following a week full of avalanche activity and incremental warming through the weekend with strong solar inputs, cloudy skies and cooling will limit the potential for natural avalanche activity into the start of the week.

Human triggering of the lingering persistent and deep persistent layers remains a concern.




Avalanche Summary

Avalanche control on Mt Field Saturday produced mixed results with some shallow slabs while other slabs stepped down to the ground up to sz 2.5. Low targets of Mt Stephen produced avalanches on every shot but these did not exceed sz 1.5. On Mt Dennis shots again triggered slabs to the ground up to sz 2.5.

See the other bulletin for the region for Friday's avalanche control results in Kootenay NP.

Snowpack Summary

15-25 cm of snow buries a layer of surface hoar, facets and sun crust (March 12). Suncrusts are forming on steep solar slopes in the alpine and are more widespread below.

The midpack comprises various Jan crust layers that are now down 60-120 cm.

The weak Nov. 16 basal facet layer is down 90-190 cm.

Weather Summary

A trough will bring cloudy skies, cooler temperatures and some light snow accumulations through Tuesday.

Monday, freezing levels around 1800m winds will be light.

Tuesday, freezing level will stay near valley bottom.

Terrain and Travel Advice

  • Uncertainty is best managed through conservative terrain choices at this time.
  • Avoid thin areas like rock outcroppings where you're most likely to trigger avalanches failing on deep weak layers.


Deep Persistent Slabs

An icon showing Deep Persistent Slabs

The weak depth hoar at the bottom of the snowpack inspires little confidence. We have seen increased activity on this layer through the week in most areas of the forecast region with the exception of the deeper snowpack areas around Little Yoho. Give careful consideration to the slopes overhead as large avalanches may run well into the runout zone or into lower-angle terrain. Avoid big terrain features and be especially cautious in thin or rocky areas, where triggering is more likely.

Aspects: All aspects.

Elevations: All elevations.


Unlikely - Possible

Expected Size

2 - 4

Persistent Slabs

An icon showing Persistent Slabs

Three persistent weak layers formed in January are down 60-120 cm. Buried sun crusts on steep solar slopes present the greatest concern for triggering, however, weak facets and isolated surface hoar can be found on the same interfaces on shaded aspects.

Aspects: All aspects.

Elevations: All elevations.


Unlikely - Possible

Expected Size

1.5 - 3

Valid until: Mar 20th, 2023 4:00PM