|Travel Advice||Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.||Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.||Dangerous avalanche conditions. Careful snowpack evaluation, cautious route-finding, and conservative decision-making essential.||Very dangerous avalanche conditions. Travel in avalanche terrain not recommended.||Extraordinarily dangerous avalanche conditions. Avoid all avalanche terrain.|
|Likelihood of Avalanches||Natural and human-triggered avalanches unlikely.||Natural avalanches unlikely; human-triggered avalanches possible.||Natural avalanches possible; human-triggered avalanches likely.||Natural avalanches likely; human-triggered avalanches very likely.||Natural and human-triggered avalanches certain.|
|Avalanche Size and Distribution||Small avalanches in isolated areas or extreme terrain.||Small avalanches in specific areas; or large avalanches in isolated areas.||Small avalanches in many areas; or large avalanches in specific areas; or very large avalanches in isolated areas.||Large avalanches in many areas; or very large avalanches in specific areas.||Very large avalanches in many areas.|
We did not observe any new avalanches yesterday. We saw widespread loose snow avalanches during the warm spell between Monday and Tuesday, and the last known slab avalanche was a skier-triggered avalanche in the Ohio Creek drainage of Bench Peak on Monday.
Over the past week, we saw a period of very strong outflow winds followed by an extended spell of unusually warm temperatures for this time of year. While that combination hasn’t done much to improve skiing and riding conditions, it has left us with a snowpack that is generally safe. Under most circumstances, the strong outflow winds we are expecting to see continue through today would give us more cause for concern, but at this point there isn’t enough soft snow on the ground to make for a widespread wind slab concern. It is important to remember that we are talking about region-wide patterns here, and even though the snowpack is generally stable, you can still find pockets of snow where a person could trigger an avalanche.
For today avalanches are unlikely, not impossible. Be sure to maintain safe travel protocols by only exposing one person at a time to steep terrain, watching your partners from safe spots out of runout zones, and always carrying a beacon, shovel, and probe. Keep an eye out for isolated wind slabs forming today, and avoid steep terrain if you notice active wind loading.
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We are still concerned with a layer of facets buried 1-2′ deep in the southern corner of our advisory zone between Pete’s North and Johnson Pass. This is the only chunk of terrain where we keep seeing unstable test results and large collapses, and it is where a skier triggered a large avalanche on Monday. The danger may be low over the majority of the forecast zone, but this small area is the exception. Be aware of potentially dangerous conditions in this southern portion of our forecast area, and dial back terrain accordingly if you are trying to get out in this zone.
Yesterday: Skies were clear with weather stations showing temperatures getting up into the upper 30’s to low 40’s F at lower elevations and the upper 20’s to low 30’s F at higher elevations. Winds were 5-10 mph with gusts of 15-20 mph out of the northwest for most of the day.
Today: Clear skies and northerly winds continue today. Winds have been blowing 10-20 mph with gusts 20-30 mph since last night, and are looking to get up to sustained speeds of 15-30 mph with gusts of 25-50 mph this morning before slowly backing off through the day. High temperatures should reach the mid 20’s to 30 F with overnight lows dropping into the single digits to low teens F. No precipitation is expected today.
Tomorrow: Clear skies continue tomorrow, with light westerly winds expected to stay around 5 mph. Temperatures should reach the mid 20’s F during the day and drop down to the single digits to low teens F overnight.
PRECIPITATION 24-hour data (6am – 6am)
|Temp Avg (F)||Snow (in)||Water (in)||Snow Depth (in)|
|Center Ridge (1880′)||33||0||0||65|
|Summit Lake (1400′)||32||0||0||37|
|Alyeska Mid (1700′)||33||0||0||66|
|Bear Valley – Portage (132′)||34||0||0||–|
RIDGETOP 24-hour data (6am – 6am)
|Temp Avg (F)||Wind Dir||Wind Avg (mph)||Wind Gust (mph)|
|Seattle Ridge (2400′)||28||NNW||6||19|
|11/27/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan Ridge||Schauer/ Stiassny Forecaster|
|11/26/23||Turnagain||Observation: Road report: Slide with dirt on Repeat offender||Anonymous|
|11/26/23||Turnagain||Observation: Pete’s North||Ben Sullender|
|11/25/23||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan trees||John Sykes Forecaster|
|11/21/23||Observation: Spokane Creek||John Sykes Forecaster|
|11/19/23||Turnagain||Observation: Magnum – PMS Bowl||Schauer/ Cullen/ Jonas Forecaster|
|11/19/23||Other Regions||Observation: Sunnyside/Penguin||Jose Ramos-Leon|
|11/19/23||Turnagain||Observation: Eddies||Andy Moderow|