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Parks Canada jasper snow safety, Parks Canada

Jasper National Park Avalanche Forecast

Apr 29th, 2019 4:43PM

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

Time to reapply that cold snow wax!  Winter lingers on in Jasper, with buried crusts being the only reminder of warm spring days.

Summary

Weather Forecast

Continued cool weather & scattered flurries.  Change arrives with a front Wednesday.

Tuesday: Mainly cloudy, treeline low -9, high -5, light N winds, freezing level 1400m. 

Wednesday:  Cloud, snowfall developing.  Freezing level 1700m, treeline high -4, light winds.

Snowfall continues, with around 30cm forecast by the weekend.

Snowpack Summary

15cm storm snow from early in the weekend was reverse loaded by Strong N-NE winds, and overlies several crusts/facet layers in the upper snowpack. Stubborn windslabs can be expected on unusual aspects in the alpine, and in exposed treeline terrain. A faceted midpack layer on shady alpine slopes remains a concern.

Avalanche Summary

No patrol Monday, no avalanches reported. On Sunday, one recent size 2.5 Persistent slab was observed in the Maligne Range. This was on an East aspect, in convex alpine terrain. Meanwhile, no new activity was noted on an icefields parkway road patrol.

Confidence

Due to the number of field observations

Problems

Persistent Slabs

An icon showing Persistent Slabs

Likelihood

Possible

Expected Size

1.5 - 3

Cool temperatures mean little change for this problem; triggering remains possible in the alpine. Crusts in the upper snowpack, and deeper facet layers warrant further investigation.

  • Watch for signs of instability such as recent avalanche activity, and whumpfing/cracking underfoot.
  • Carefully evaluate big terrain features by digging and testing on adjacent, safe slopes.

Aspects:

North, North East, East, North West.

Elevations:

Alpine.

Wind Slabs

An icon showing Wind Slabs

Likelihood

Possible - Unlikely

Expected Size

1 - 2

Snowfall with strong N winds created wind slabs on Saturday; however likelihood of triggering is dropping over time. Old wind slabs on N aspects may also remain a possibility on high alpine slopes in the Icefields.

  • Keep an eye out for reverse loading created by N-NE winds.

Aspects:

South East, South, South West, West.

Elevations:

Alpine, Treeline.

Valid until: Apr 30th, 2019 4:00PM