Avalanche Canada shorton, Avalanche Canada

Purcells Avalanche Forecast

Jan 13th, 2020 5:00PM

Navigate around wind affected slopes and avoid steep rocky start zones.

Summary

Confidence

High -

Weather Forecast

MONDAY NIGHT: Clear, light wind from the west, alpine temperatures drop to -25 C.

TUESDAY: Mix of sun and cloudy, light to moderate wind from the west, alpine high temperatures around -20 C.

WEDNESDAY: Mix of sun and cloud with some isolated flurries to the south, light wind from the southwest, alpine high temperatures around -20 C.

THURSDAY: Cloudy with scattered flurries and 5-10 cm of snow, light wind from the south, alpine high temperatures around -15 C.

Avalanche Summary

Large (size 2-3) deep persistent slab avalanches continue to be triggered naturally and with explosives in steep alpine terrain, as a few more were reported over the weekend. Smaller (size 1) wind slab and dry loose avalanches have been reactive to human triggering over the past few days as well. It has been over one week since any persistent slab avalanches on the December surface hoar layer have been reported, although there could still be lingering concerns about triggering this layer on isolated slopes in sheltered terrain.

Snowpack Summary

Wind has been blowing from different directions and at all elevations over the past few days, so wind slabs could be found in unusual places. A layer of surface hoar that formed in late December appears to be less reactive than it was a week ago and can be found 70 cm deep around Golden, 30 cm deep around Invermere, 70 cm deep around Kimberley, and 100 cm deep along Kootenay Lake. As usual for the Purcells, the base of the snowpack contains basal facets and it remains possible to trigger these deep weak layers in shallow rocky start zones.

Terrain and Travel

  • Recent wind has varied in direction so watch for wind slabs on all aspects.
  • Use caution on large alpine slopes, especially around thin areas that may propagate to deeper instabilities.

Valid until: Jan 14th, 2020 5:00PM