Avalanche Forecast

Issued: Jan 8th, 2024 4:00PM

The alpine rating is high, the treeline rating is high, and the below treeline rating is considerable. Known problems include Storm Slabs and Persistent Slabs.

Avalanche Canada lbaker, Avalanche Canada


Very dangerous avalanche conditions exist at higher elevations where heavy snowfall and extreme winds are building reactive storm slabs. Travel in avalanche terrain is not recommended.




Avalanche Summary

On Sunday, a few natural, size 2, wind slab avalanches and two skier accidental, size 1.5, wind slab avalanches were reported. Wind slabs were reactive to natural and human triggers in cross-loaded terrain on west aspects in the alpine.

On Saturday, several natural persistent slab avalanches were reported to size 3 in the Whistler backcountry. These avalanches occurred on northerly aspects in the alpine.

Snowpack Summary

By Tuesday morning +20 cm of storm snow blankets the Coast Mountains.

This overlies wind-affected surface and 30 to 50 cm of settling snow. A weak lay of surface hoar overlying a crust is found down 50 to 70 cm. becomes thin and variable above 1900 m.

Another crust from early Dec is down 80-150 cm. A few large avalanches observed in the region on January 6 are suspected to have failed on this layer.

Snowpack depths are 120-230 cm around treeline and decrease rapidly below.

Weather Summary

Monday Night

Cloudy with flurries, 20 to 40 cm of snow. Southwest ridgetop winds 40 to 70 km/h. Treeline temperature -7 °C.


Cloudy with flurries, 10 to 20 cm of snow. Southwest ridgetop winds 30 to 50 km/h. Treeline temperature -8 °C.


Partly cloudy with isolated flurries, trace amounts of snow. Northwest ridgetop winds 10 to 25 km/h. Treeline temperature -12 °C.


Partly cloudy with isolated flurries, trace amounts of snow. Southwest ridgetop winds 10 to 40 km/h. Treeline temperatures drop through the day to -16 °C.

More details can be found in the Mountain Weather Forecast.

Terrain and Travel Advice

  • Avoid all avalanche terrain during periods of heavy loading from new snow, wind, or rain.
  • Avoid freshly wind loaded features, especially near ridge crests, roll-overs and in steep terrain.
  • Avoid lingering or regrouping in runout zones.


Storm Slabs

An icon showing Storm Slabs

With previous low density available for transport, expect fresh slabs to build with wind and more falling snow. At lower elevations, fresh snow may now provide enough coverage to reach the threshold for avalanches.

Aspects: All aspects.

Elevations: All elevations.


Possible - Likely

Expected Size

1 - 2

Persistent Slabs

An icon showing Persistent Slabs

A weak layer down 80 to 150 cm is suspected to have been the culprit of recent large avalanches in the region. With additional snow and wind we may see more large avalanche activity on this layer on Tuesday. Avoid exposure to overhead hazards.

Aspects: North, North East, East, West, North West.

Elevations: Alpine.



Expected Size

2 - 3.5

Valid until: Jan 9th, 2024 4:00PM