Banff Yoho & Kootenay National Park Avalanche Forecast

Issued: Apr 2nd, 2021 4:00PM

Fri Apr 2nd Current Conditions
Alpine Moderate Treeline Moderate Below Treeline Moderate
Sat Apr 3rd 2 Day Outlook
Alpine Considerable Treeline Moderate Below Treeline Low
Sun Apr 4th 3 Day Outlook
Alpine Moderate Treeline Moderate Below Treeline Low

The alpine rating is moderate, the treeline rating is moderate, and the below treeline rating is moderate. Known problems include Wind Slabs, Loose Wet and Cornices.

Quality skiing/riding still available on higher elevation, polar aspects.

The lower elevation snowpack will deteriorate with prolonged solar radiation and warming temps.

Summary

Weather Forecast

Saturday will have a mix of sun and cloud, winds 20-60km/hr from the South West and a freezing level up to 1900m as the valley bottom reaches a high of +12. A system pushes into the region on Saturday night bringing 10-15cm of snow and gradually decreasing winds over the day on Sunday.

Snowpack Summary

Crusts exist up to ~1600m on all aspects and higher on solar aspects. Strong Southerly winds have formed wind slab at tree line and above. The March 19 interface is down 20-50cm and consists of crust on solar aspects and facets on north aspects. Basal facets exist in shallow areas east of the divide.

Avalanche Summary

Several cornice failures over the last week up to size 2.5, some of which have pulled small slabs from the slopes below.

Confidence

Problems

Wind Slabs

An icon showing Wind Slabs

Likelihood

Possible

Expected Size

1 - 2

Strong Southerly winds have berated the mountains for the last few days and have potentially built wind slab in the alpine and exposed tree line areas. There is uncertainty on how reactive these slabs are, so use caution in loaded terrain.

  • Use caution in lee areas. Recent wind loading have created wind slabs.
  • Be careful with wind loaded pockets, especially in steep confined alpine terrain.

Aspects:

All aspects.

Elevations:

Alpine, Treeline.

Loose Wet

An icon showing Loose Wet

Likelihood

Likely - Possible

Expected Size

1 - 1.5

Saturday will see a freezing level of ~1900m and periods of increased solar radiation which could quickly weaken the snowpack . Avoid slopes where the snow is moist or punchy.

  • Use caution on solar slopes if the snow is moist or wet.
  • Avoid ice climbs that are exposed to steep rocky terrain on solar aspects.

Aspects:

South, South West, West.

Elevations:

Below Treeline.

Cornices

An icon showing Cornices

Likelihood

Possible

Expected Size

1 - 2.5

Cornices are big and the springtime is when they fall off more frequently. Strong winds combined with the forecasted warmup can make them more likely to fall. Don't be nearby when they do!

  • Minimize exposure to overhead hazard from cornices.
  • Cornices become weak with daytime heating, so travel early on exposed slopes.

Aspects:

North, North East, East, South East.

Elevations:

Alpine.

Valid until: Apr 3rd, 2021 4:00PM

Forecast Trend

The latest forecast danger ratings, broken down to elevation. See how an elevation is trending.