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Avalanche Canada mike.koppang, Avalanche Canada

Kananaskis Country Avalanche Forecast

Jan 23rd, 2019 3:00PM

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

5cm of recent snow but we still need a significant storm to get a full reset!  Thin areas are the places where a skier may trigger the basal facets!

Summary

Confidence

High -

Weather Forecast

Overnight and throughout the day on thursday we are expecting dribs and drabs of snow but not a significant accumulation.  Temperatures will be in the -10C range with wionds increasing to moderate out of the SW.  This is going to be roughly what we are going to see over the next few days...

Avalanche Summary

Suspect no new avalanches were observed today.

Snowpack Summary

5cm of snow fell overnight and a dusting of snow throughout the day.  The eastern region (Kananaskis Valley and Ghost) saw slightly more than this as the snowfall was more up-slope in nature.  This new snow is sitting on a variety of snow surface such as windslabs and facetted snow.  The Jan 17th layer is now down approx 15cm at treeline.  We have a pretty well settled upper snow pack that is sitting on 50-60cm of basal facets. Because of the variability in snow depth, it is easy to come across thinner spots which are more sensitive to lighter loads such as a skier and also likely to trigger an avalanche.

Problems

Deep Persistent Slabs

An icon showing Deep Persistent Slabs

Likelihood

Possible

Expected Size

1.5 - 3
The base of the snowpack is weak and susceptible to human triggerring from thinner snowpack areas.
Carefully evaluate and use caution around thin snowpack areas.Be aware of the potential for full depth avalanches due to weak layers at the base of the snowpack.

Aspects:

North, North East, East, South East, South, North West.

Elevations:

All elevations.

Wind Slabs

An icon showing Wind Slabs

Likelihood

Possible

Expected Size

1 - 2.5
Expect to encounter windslabs in open areas along the ridgelines and in crossloaded features. 
Be careful with wind loaded pockets while approaching and climbing ice routes.Avoid convexities or areas with a thin or variable snowpack.Be aware of thin areas that may propogate to deeper instabilites.

Aspects:

North, North East, East, South East.

Elevations:

Alpine, Treeline.

Valid until: Jan 24th, 2019 2:00PM