Parks Canada ross campbell, Parks Canada

Glacier National Park Avalanche Forecast

Jan 14th, 2020 8:08AM

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

Frostbite and Hypothermia are real concerns with these temperatures! 


Weather Forecast

Mainly sunny with with isolated flurries today. We may see an Alpine High of -23 thanks to a mild Inversion, and winds should stay light from the NE. Staying cold tonight, but we should start to see a change in the weather tomorrow, with 4 cm of new snow, and 15 cm on Thursday as a Low-Pressure system pushes through from the Pacific

Snowpack Summary

Light to strong winds have switched from S to NE, over the past 24hrs, and have likely built fresh wind slabs in immediate lees. Recent snowfall has settled to around 80cm over the Dec 27th surface hoar or crust depending on aspect and elevation. The mid and lower snowpack are generally well settled and strong.

Avalanche Summary

Mannix avalanche path in the Highway Corridor released naturally yesterday, size 3 terminating halfway down the fan, dusting the Highway. Explosive testing at Mt. Fidelity produced 4 small avalanches (size 1), soft slabs with limited propagation. A MIN reported of some shooting cracks on Little Sifton on cross loaded SW aspects



Wind Slabs

An icon showing Wind Slabs



Expected Size

1 - 2

Moderate to Strong winds from the South, then switching to the NE built Wind Slabs in the Alpine and exposed areas of Treeline. Cold temperatures have slowed down avalanche initiation rendering the wind slabs stubborn to trigger.

  • Be careful with wind loaded pockets, especially near ridge crests and roll-overs.
  • Watch for shooting cracks or stiffer feeling snow. Avoid areas that appear wind loaded.


All aspects.


Alpine, Treeline.

Persistent Slabs

An icon showing Persistent Slabs


Possible - Unlikely

Expected Size

1.5 - 3

The December 27th surface hoar layer persists down 70-90cm. This layer was responsible for two skier triggered avalanches Saturday, and continues to produce hard sudden results in snowpack tests.

  • Avoid steep convexities or areas with a thin or variable snowpack.


All aspects.


All elevations.

Valid until: Jan 15th, 2020 8:00AM