Rising temperatures will increase the avalanche danger and potentially trigger very large avalanches. Read more in this Forecasters' Blog.




Avalanche Summary

Recent observations are limited to small wet loose avalanches on sun-exposed slopes, but we expect this to change as the freezing level rapidly rises. We expect a natural cycle of wet avalanches and cornice failures as well as the potential for very large persistent and deep persistent slab avalanches for the foreseeable future.

Snowpack Summary

A moist snow surface can be expected everywhere except the highest north-facing slopes.

The sudden addition of heat to the snowpack has potential to reawaken dormant weak layers, including weak snow above crusts buried in late March (50 to 100 cm deep) and the weak basal facets found at the bottom of the snowpack. The timing of when and where persistent slabs will reawaken is uncertain. The Purcells likely require minimal heat to trigger large avalanches, while other parts of the interior have been experiencing a period of dormancy and may take longer to react to the warming.

The snowpack is diminishing below treeline, but under the current conditions persistent and deep persistent slab avalanches could release at higher elevations and run into valley bottoms.

Weather Summary

A ridge of high pressure will bring mostly sunny skies with freezing levels between 2500 m and 3700 m for the coming days, with no or minimal overnight refreeze expected.

More details can be found in the Mountain Weather Forecast.

Terrain and Travel Advice

  • Avoid steep slopes when air temperatures are warm, or solar radiation is strong.
  • Minimize exposure to overhead avalanche terrain, large avalanches may reach the end of runout zones.
  • Use extra caution around cornices: they are large, fragile, and can trigger slabs on slopes below.
  • The more the snowpack warms-up and weakens, the more conservative you`ll want to be with your terrain selection.
  • The likelihood of deep persistent slab avalanches will increase with each day of warm weather.


Deep Persistent Slabs

An icon showing Deep Persistent Slabs

The likelihood of very large avalanches releasing on buried weak layers will increase with each day of warming. Layers of concern include weak snow above hard crusts buried about 50 to 100 cm deep and weak facets near the bottom of the snowpack.

Human triggered avalanches are most likely in steep, shallow, and rocky terrain, where the snowpack is relatively thin.

Naturally triggered avalanches could occur without warning and are most likely on days when there isn't a good overnight refreeze. Resulting avalanches could travel far and even into snow-free valleys. For this reason, recognizing and avoiding areas with large overhead avalanche slopes, even if they are out of sight, is very important.

Aspects: All aspects.

Elevations: Alpine, Treeline.



Expected Size

2.5 - 4

Loose Wet

An icon showing Loose Wet

Wet loose avalanche activity is expected with daytime warming and during periods of strong sun. This problem can quickly change over the day. Stable conditions in the morning can turn very unstable during the heat of the day.

Aspects: All aspects.

Elevations: All elevations.


Very Likely

Expected Size

1.5 - 2.5


An icon showing Cornices

Cornices are large at this time of year and will become more prone to fail as they warm up with spring weather. Stay well back from them when on ridgelines and limit your exposure when travelling on slopes below them, as their release is unpredictable. Cornice falls could trigger very large slab avalanches on slopes below them.

Aspects: North, North East, East, North West.

Elevations: Alpine, Treeline.


Possible - Likely

Expected Size

2 - 3

Valid until: Apr 28th, 2023 4:00PM