Vancouver Island Avalanche Forecast

Issued: Mar 13th, 2020 2:00AM

Thu Mar 12th Current Conditions
Alpine Considerable Treeline Moderate Below Treeline Moderate
Fri Mar 13th 2 Day Outlook
Alpine Moderate Treeline Moderate Below Treeline Low
Sat Mar 14th 3 Day Outlook
Alpine Moderate Treeline Moderate Below Treeline Low

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

No new avalanches have been observed or reported.


Past Weather

Cool temperatures with daytime sunshine and moderate to strong south west wind.

Weather Forecast

A strengthening high pressure system will push the storm track to the south of the forecast region.Friday: Trace of new snow, Winds Moderate from the North West, Freezing levels to 500 meters.Saturday: No new snow, Winds Moderate from the North, Freezing levels to 400 meters.Sunday: No new snow, Winds strong from the North, Freezing levels 500 meters.

Terrain Advice

Careful and cautious route finding when transitioning from scoured areas into areas of wind loaded snow.If choosing to travel in exposed terrain, take time to identify and avoid large areas of drifted and wind transported snow and slopes below cornices. Avoid traveling both above and below cornice features.

Snowpack Summary

Past strong wind has scoured, stripped and pressed areas that are exposed to the wind and as well transported and redistributed the available snow. The wind transported moderate amounts of available low density storm snow. This wind transported snow has buried a surface hoar layer that formed during a brief period of cool and clear conditions. The mid and lower snow pack continues to gain strength and settle during the past period of cool and consistent temperatures. On solar aspects the past forecast experienced a period of clearing and warming and daily unconsolidated snow in the upper snow pack began to refreeze overnight forming a crust on steep solar aspects.

Snowpack Details

  • Surface: A variety of surface conditions exist that include, wind scoured, and wind loaded in areas that are directly lee of winds.
  • Upper: A supportive and strengthening bond between the past melt freeze crust down from 15 to 30 cm.
  • Mid: A variety of old crusts can be found.
  • Lower: Well settled and dense.


High - Very good agreement between weather models and numerous field reports and observations.


Wind Slabs

An icon showing Wind Slabs


Expected Size

1 - 1
Found on predominantly North aspects, but will begin to build on south aspects with forecast strong north wind. This avalanche problem is likely to persist as wind transport is forecast to continue to load a variety of surfaces including, buried surface hoar interface and melt freeze crust. **Location:** All aspects and found in both the Alpine and at Tree line in areas protected from the wind. **Possibility:** Triggering of this avalanche problem is possible to likely from light loads such as skiers. Natural avalanches are possible. **Size:** If triggered expect these avalanches to be small, and on isolated terrain features large, size 2.

Valid until: Mar 14th, 2020 2:00AM

Forecast Trend

The latest forecast danger ratings, broken down to elevation. See how an elevation is trending.