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Avalanche Advisory

Turnagain Area Avalanche Advisory
Forecaster:   Kevin Wright  
Friday, January 20th 2012
Created: Jan 20th 6:42 am
1 Low Alpine / Above 2,500' Travel Advice: Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.
1 Low Treeline / 1,000'-2,500' Travel Advice: Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.
1 Low Below Treeline / Below 1,000' Travel Advice: Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.
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The Libby Group
The Bottom Line
Good morning. This is Kevin Wright with the Chugach National Forest Avalanche Information Center on Friday, January 20th at 7am. This will serve as 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).

BOTTOM LINE
The avalanche danger is LOW through the core zone of Turnagain Pass. Steep alpine zones still have some potential for small sluffs and occasional small wind slabs. Extreme terrain, which includes areas with cliffs, very steep and sustained slopes, and terrain traps can still be life threatening during times of LOW avalanche danger.

AVALANCHE DISCUSSION
Our extended period of clear, cold, and calm weather has led to generally safe avalanche conditions in the backcountry. A number of reports from big and steep terrain have all come back with positive reviews of the snowpack. Our own slope testing shows loose snow on top of a strong snowpack. The surface layers are building surface hoar and faceting out, creating a potential for small sluff avalanches in steep terrain.

Under the definitions of LOW avalanche danger, there still remains a possibility for unstable snow on isolated terrain features. Small avalanches are still possible in extreme terrain. Steep and unforgiving terrain carries its own risks. Small sluffs can provide the surprise push to send a person over a cliff.

The clear and cold weather is building large surface hoar, primarily at lower elevations below treeline. Faceting of the surface layers is also loosening the snow. Both of these processes could create problems when the weak surface snow gets buried by the next storm.


MOUNTAIN WEATHER
The weather forecasters are calling for anCNFAIC Staff 2 days of clear and cold weather before a storm system finally breaks in again. Today is anCNFAIC Staff dvu of yesterday with clear skies, below zero temperatures, and light wind. A temperature inversion is likely again today with ridgetop temps reaching into the positive single digits.

The next storm could break through our blocking high pressure ridge in the near future. Snow is now in the forecast for Saturday night.


CNFAIC Weather Page and the NWS forecast

I will issue the next advisory Saturday morning. If you get out in the backcountry we want to know what you are seeing. Please send us your observations using the button at the top of this page or give us a call at 754-2369. Thanks and have a great day.

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: May 16, 2017 )

AREA STATUS WEATHER AND RIDING CONDITIONS
Glacier District
Johnson Pass: Closed
Placer River: Closed
Skookum Drainage: Closed
Turnagain Pass: ClosedThanks all for a safe and fun season on the Chugach NF! Stay tuned for the 2017/18 season. #playsafe #snowtosealevel
Twentymile: Closed
Seward District
Carter Lake: Closed
Lost Lake Trail: Closed
Primrose Trail: Closed
Resurrection Pass Trail: ClosedResurrection Pass trail will be open to snowmachine use during the 2017/18 winter season.
Snug Harbor: Closed
South Fork Snow River Corridor: Closed
Summit Lake: Closed

Subscribe to the Turnagain Area Avalanche Advisory:

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 or questions regarding CNFAIC operations or winter recreation management, please email staff@chugachavalanche.org
© 2017 Chugach National Forest Avalanche Information Center. All rights reserved.
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