Avalanche Forecast

Issued: Jan 6th, 2024 4:00PM

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.

Avalanche Canada ejones, Avalanche Canada


North winds may build thin, reactive slabs at upper elevations today.

Back off if you observe any signs of instability, such as avalanches, whumpfs, or shooting cracks.




Avalanche Summary

There have been no recent reports of avalanches. If you are going into the backcountry, consider submitting a Mountain Information Network report.

Backcountry users have been experiencing whumpfs in the Babines, Grizzly Plateau, and around Hudson Bay Mountain. We suspect the whumpfing is from the failure of surface hoar layers that are described in the Snowpack Summary. Such observations suggest that humans could trigger avalanches where these layers remain intact.

Snowpack Summary

Up to 25 cm of soft snow exists in areas sheltered from the wind. The snow surface in wind-exposed areas is wind-stiffened or scoured back to a hard melt-freeze crust or the ground. A small amount of new snow over a hard crust is found below treeline.

Two or more preserved surface hoar layers can be found buried between 35 cm and 80 cm deep. These layers are most prominent at treeline and below treeline elevations above 1200 m, but they've also been observed in some alpine locations.

Snowpack depths at treeline vary across the region with generally deeper amounts (~150 cm) in the west and shallower (~80 cm) in the east.

Weather Summary

Saturday Night

Cloudy with trace snow, northwest alpine wind 10 to 20 km/h, treeline temperature -9 °C.


A mix of sun and cloud with no precipitation, northwest alpine wind 10 to 20 km/h, treeline temperature -10 ºC.


Cloudy with up to 5 cm of snow possible, south alpine wind 20 to 30 km/h, treeline temperature -8 ºC. 


Cloudy with trace snow, north alpine wind 20 to 30 km/h, treeline temperature -10 ºC. 

More details can be found in the Mountain Weather Forecast.

Terrain and Travel Advice

  • Approach steep open slopes at and below treeline cautiously, buried surface hoar may exist.
  • Look for signs of instability: whumphing, hollow sounds, shooting cracks, and recent avalanches.
  • Recent wind has varied in direction so watch for wind slabs on all aspects.


Wind Slabs

An icon showing Wind Slabs

Watch for slabs on lee slopes and cross-loaded features. Wind slabs are likely to be more reactive on steep slopes near ridgetop and on convex rollovers. Assess for slabs before committing to large and consequential terrain features.

Aspects: All aspects.

Elevations: Alpine, Treeline.



Expected Size

1 - 2

Persistent Slabs

An icon showing Persistent Slabs

Several buried surface hoar layers may be found 35 to 80 cm deep. These layers only seem to be a problem at elevations above 1200 m.

Aspects: All aspects.

Elevations: All elevations.



Expected Size

1 - 2.5

Valid until: Jan 7th, 2024 4:00PM