South Rockies Avalanche Forecast
Jan 13th, 2020 4:00PM
If you decide to brave the cold Tuesday, seek out wind-sheltered areas, free of overhead hazard, where you will find the safest riding and blower pow.
Monday night: Cloudy with isolated flurries bringing a trace of new snow. Light southwest winds,moderate at ridgetop. Alpine temperatures around -25 C.
Tuesday: Cloudy with scattered flurries bringing a trace of new snow, increasing a bit overnight. Light southwest winds, becoming strong at ridgetop. Alpine temperatures around -23 C.
Wednesday: Clearing. Light to moderate southwest winds, becoming strong at ridgetop. Alpine temperatures around -15 C.
Thursday: Cloudy with isolated flurries bringing 5-10 cm of new snow. Light to moderate southwest winds. Alpine temperatures around -15.
Natural avalanche observations have been limited by low visibility and high winds. On Monday, a large natural audible was reported, as well as several skier controlled loose dry size 1. Reports from the weekend consisted of windslab avalanches - skier controlled size 1, and explosive controlled size 1.5-2.5.
50-70 cm of snow from last week has been redistributed into wind slabs by moderate to strong southwest to southeast winds in exposed areas at all elevations. Snow in protected areas is unconsolidated and well preserved by the cold temperatures.
The recent snow buried older wind slabs and other wind-affected surfaces. This older, wind-affected snow forms the upper part of an increasingly consolidated mid-snowpack, which overlies a generally weak basal snowpack.
The bottom 10-20 cm of the snowpack consists of facets and deteriorating crusts. This basal layer has gradually been gaining strength, but potential still exists for large triggers in thin, rocky areas to trigger avalanches at this depth.
Terrain and Travel
- Seek out wind sheltered terrain below treeline where you can avoid wind slabs and find great riding.
- Keep your guard up at lower elevations. Wind slab formation has been extensive.
- Be alert to conditions that change with elevation, aspect and exposure to wind.
- Be aware of the potential for loose avalanches in steep terrain where snow hasn't formed a slab.
Valid until: Jan 14th, 2020 5:00PM