Banff Yoho & Kootenay National Park Avalanche Forecast
May 5th, 2019 4:33PM
Regular avalanche forecasts are now finished. Use our weather stations, the ACMG Mountain Condition Reports, and Mountain Information Network to stay up to date on current conditions, or call Visitor Safety at 403-762-1470 with specific questions.
Go to www.avalanche.ca/weather/forecast for the current weather forecast.
New snow instabilities are generally settling rapidly and alpine N aspects remain cold and dry. Concern remains for alpine solar aspects where April facets between crusts have been reactive in the past week. Treeline and below a spring melt freeze snowpack exists with crusts in the AM and increasing hazard in the PM depending on temperatures.
As of May 5th, loose wet avalanches with daytime warming on solar aspects and lower elevations, and a few wind and storm slabs in the alpine up to size 2 were reported in the past week. Increasing temperatures in the next weeks will lead to increased avalanche avalanche activity and cornice failures especially during the hottest parts of the day.
Any significant storms or increased winds will redistribute soft snow in the alpine and form wind slabs in lee areas. Watch for wind loading when entering steeper, more committing ski lines or climbing alpine routes.
- Be careful with wind loaded pockets, especially near ridge crests and roll-overs.
Aspects:North, North East, East.
If the sun comes out for any length of time or daytime temperatures rise above freezing, expect loose wet avalanches out of steep terrain. Cornice failures will also increase with warm temperatures.
- Daytime warming will weaken surface layers, plan your day around being back to the trailhead early.
- Minimize exposure to big slopes with cornices, especially during the heat of the day.
Aspects:South East, South, South West, West.
Though not widespread, this layer of facets over crusts from mid April has been reactive in the alpine for a couple weeks and may persist for the next week or two. Some deeper persistent layers may also wake up as temperatures climb later in spring.
- Dig down to find and test weak layers before committing to a line.
- Watch for signs of instability such as whumpfing, or cracking.
Aspects:East, South East, South, South West, West.
Valid until: May 6th, 2019 4:33PM