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Avalanche Advisory

Turnagain Area Avalanche Advisory
Forecaster:   John Fitzgerald  
Wednesday, April 23rd 2014
Created: Apr 23rd 6:29 am
1 Low Above Treeline
Travel Advice: Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features. Likelihood of Avalanches: Natural and human-triggered avalanches unlikely. Avalanche Size & Distribution: Small avalanches in isolated areas or extreme terrain.
1 Low Below Treeline
Travel Advice: Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features. Likelihood of Avalanches: Natural and human-triggered avalanches unlikely. Avalanche Size & Distribution: Small avalanches in isolated areas or extreme terrain.
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Special Announcement
  • Turnagain Pass is now CLOSED to motorized use due to low snow cover.

  • Mark your calendars!!  The 2014 Corn Harvest will be Saturday, April 26th at the Turnagain Pass Center Ridge parking lot. Come by for free food, games and fun!  More details HERE.
  • This is the final week of advisories.  They will be issued today through Sunday, April 27th.

The Bottom Line

The avalanche danger is LOW at all elevations.  Cornice fall and very low volume wet loose avalanches are potential snowpack issues to be aware of today.


Primary Concern

The snowpack around the forecast area can be considered “well seasoned”.  Multiple days of no precipitation and diurnal melting and freezing have helped to strengthen the snowpack.  Despite several nights of mild air temps, the surface has been able to refreeze, mainly due to clear skies.  While avalanche activity is unlikely today, as temperatures climb and the sun hits different aspects, it is still worth being on the lookout for the following:

Cornices
These giants are fully matured and sitting above many starting zones.  Keep your distance from cornices when approaching from the side or above.  Know where the snow begins and the underlying terrain ends.  When traveling below cornices, make sure to spread your group out and minimize time spent underneath them.

Wet Loose Avalanches
In terrain over 45 degrees receiving direct sunlight and steep terrain in the lower elevations very low volume human triggered sluffs are possible.  Pay attention to any snow moving around you and get out of its way by either stopping above it or turning away from it.  It should be noted that North aspects are beginning to receive direct sun, so all aspects hold this potential.


Mountain Weather

Clear skies overnight have allowed for freezing to occur on the surface.  Temps (F) in the past 24 hours:

                                      avg.    max.
Sunburst (3,812’)           37       42.3
Seattle (2,400’)              37       43.7
Center Ridge (1,880')    42       52.4

Ridgetop winds have been light and variable.  No new precipitation has fallen.

Today expect another sunny day with occasional cloud cover.  Temperatures at 1,000’ will again climb into the mid 40s F.  Winds will be out of the Southeast at 5-10 mph.

The extended outlook is showing a continuation of generally mild and sunny weather through the end of the week.

This is a general backcountry avalanche advisory issued for Turnagain Arm with Turnagain Pass as the core advisory area (this advisory does not apply to highways, railroads, or operating ski areas).

Winter snowmachine use open/closed status and riding conditions updates

Riding status is not associated with avalanche danger. An area will be open to motorized use in accordance to the Forest Management Plan when snow coverage is adequate to protect underlying vegetation. Backcountry hazards including avalanche hazard are always present regardless of the open status of motorized use areas.

(Updated: Apr 22, 2014 )

AREA STATUS WEATHER AND RIDING CONDITIONS
Glacier District
Johnson Pass: Closed
Placer River: Closed
Skookum Drainage: Closed
Turnagain Pass: ClosedClosed as of April 23rd.
Twentymile: Closed
Seward District
Carter Lake: Closed
Lost Lake Trail: Closed
Primrose Trail: Closed
Resurrection Pass Trail: Closed
Snug Harbor: OpenPlease stay on existing road (and snow) bed to gain access into Lost Lake.
South Fork Snow River Corridor: Closed
Summit Lake: Closed

The information in this advisory is from the U.S. Forest Service, which is solely responsible for its content. This advisory describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur. This advisory provided by the Chugach National Forest, in partnership with Friends of the Chugach National Forest Avalanche Information Center.


USFS SNOW AND AVALANCHE HOTLINE (907) 754-2369
If you have comments regarding CNFAIC operations or winter recreation managment, please email kevin@chugachavalanche.org
© 2014 Chugach National Forest Avalanche Information Center. All rights reserved.
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