Avalanche Canada shorton, Avalanche Canada

Lizard Range and Flathead Avalanche Forecast

Nov 28th, 2019 4:00PM

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

Cold dry weather will continue into the weekend. Avalanches are possible in alpine terrain where wind slabs have formed.

Summary

Confidence

Moderate - Confidence is due to a stable weather pattern; little change is expected for several days.

Weather Forecast

THURSDAY NIGHT: Clear skies, light wind, alpine temperatures drop to -20 C.

FRIDAY: Sunny with a few clouds in the afternoon, 30 km/h wind from the east, alpine high temperatures around -12 C.

SATURDAY: Sunny, light wind, alpine high temperatures around -10 C.

SUNDAY: Mostly sunny, 30-50 km/h wind from the west, alpine high temperatures around -10 C.

Avalanche Summary

With little to speak of in terms of recent snowfall, the main concern right now is old wind slabs in open terrain. Last weekend several small human triggered wind slabs were reported around the Harvey Pass area. Cold windy weather over the past few days has potentially formed more thin wind slabs in this type of terrain. Concern is reduced in areas where the snow depths have not yet reach the threshold for avalanches.

Snowpack Summary

The Lizard Flathead region unfortunately missed out on the storm that hit Alberta. Little to no snow fell in the Lizard Range while eastern parts of the region received 5-15 cm of snow. This leaves the region with an overall thin snowpack, with somewhere between 50 to 100 cm of snow in the alpine (see the photo in this recent MIN report from Harvey Pass for an idea of current coverage). 

Two crusts have been reported in the middle of the snowpack. There is some uncertainty about how well the snow is bonding to these crusts. Although they are probably unreactive right now, be prepared to back off to mellow terrain if you encounter signs of instability such as whumpfs or shooting cracks, which could indicate these layers are in fact reactive.

Problems

Wind Slabs

An icon showing Wind Slabs

Likelihood

Unlikely-Possible

Expected Size

1 - 2

Recent wind has likely left pockets of unstable snow in alpine terrain and near ridgetops.

Aspects:

All aspects.

Elevations:

Alpine.

Valid until: Nov 29th, 2019 4:00PM