Glide avalanches in the Girdwood valley, like this one near Raggedtop, have been reported over the past two days. Aside from that, the advisory area has experienced no avalanche activity that we know of since the cycle on Monday, Dec 9th. We also didn’t see any new activity yesterday in the Summit Lake area.
Up in the high elevation terrain where dry snow exists, wind slabs have been forming in the lee of ridges and gullies since Dec. 9. Ridgetop winds have been persistent and steady from the east and averaging over 30mph over the last 24 hours. This combined with a few inches of new snow from last night and a chance for a few more inches today will keep wind slabs, along with cornice falls, a primary concern. Choose your routes carefully and retreat if the snow beneath you becomes stiff and hollow sounding.
Rain up to 3000′ transitions to snow above, which is adding more snow and stress to a persistent weak layer in the higher terrain above 3,000′. We’ve been tracking a layer of facets sitting over a crust near the ground. Our snowpack stability tests consistently indicated this layer was stubborn, but reactive and planar before these series of storms rolled through. Until we know more, we are still concerned it could become overloaded and produce a larger avalanche breaking near the ground.
Snow depths are minimal up to ~1500′. Near 2500′ and above, snow depths range from 3-6′ where snow is accumulating.
There have been reports of glide cracks and releases within the Girdwood Valley (see photo above). We’ll continue to monitor if this is a trend throughout the advisory area. Glide avalanche failure is difficult to predict – stay out from underneath these cracks!
Yesterday: Cloudy skies with above freezing temperatures were seen all day and overnight up to 2500′. Around .5″ of rain fell in the afternoon and overnight in Girdwood and Turnagain Pass up to 2000′. Ridgetop winds have been persistent, averaging from 25-35 mph with gusts to 60 mph.
Today: Cloudy skies with intermittent rain below 2,000′ through late afternoon, then possibly transitioning to snow as temperatures push toward freezing at 1,000′. Roughly .25″ of rain is forecast today with another .5 possible tonight, equating to a total of 5-8″ of snow by tomorrow morning in the Alpine. Easterly winds will continue to move warm Gulf air and moisture into the region. Ridgetop winds should back off slightly today to the 10-20 mph range with gusts to 40mph.
Tomorrow: Cloudy skies with light precipitation will continue as this Gulf low slowly works its way out of the region. Temperatures will remain near 40F at sea level and 30 F at 3,000′. Persistent moderate to strong winds are expected to continue out of the east.
PRECIPITATION 24-hour data (6am – 6am)
|Temp Avg (F)||Snow (in)||Water (in)||Snow Depth (in)|
|Center Ridge (1880′)||37||0||0.5||18|
|Summit Lake (1400′)||37||0||0||7|
|Alyeska Mid (1700′)||36||0||0.4||12|
RIDGETOP 24-hour data (6am – 6am)
|Temp Avg (F)||Wind Dir||Wind Avg (mph)||Wind Gust (mph)|
|Seattle Ridge (2400′)||N/A*||N/A*||N/A*||N/A*|
*Seattle Ridge weather station is down and as soon as the weather clears we will get it up and running!
|12/10/19||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan and Sunburst from the air||CNFAIC Staff|
|12/10/19||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan||Nancy Pfeiffer|
|12/08/19||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan||Ryan Van Luit Forecaster|
|12/06/19||Turnagain||Avalanche: Sunburst||Billy Finley|
|12/04/19||Turnagain||Observation: Sunburst||A.Johnston-Bloom/ W.Wagner/ R.Van Luit Forecaster|
|12/03/19||Turnagain||Observation: Hippy Bowl||Nick Langowski|
|12/01/19||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan, All elevations||Eric Roberts|
|12/01/19||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan||Andy Moderow|
|11/30/19||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan Treeline Plateau/ Common Bowl/ Ridge||Eric Roberts|
|11/29/19||Turnagain||Observation: Sunburst Ob #2||Aleph Johnston-Bloom Forecaster|
Status of riding areas across the Chugach NF is managed by the Glacier and Seward Ranger Districts, not avalanche center staff. Riding area information is posted as a public service to our users and updated based on snow depth and snow density to prevent resource damage at trailhead locations. Riding area questions contact: email@example.com
|Area||Status||Weather & Riding Conditions|
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