Turnagain Pass Avalanche Forecast
The avalanche danger remains LOW at all elevations and human triggered avalanches are unlikely. However, glide avalanches have been releasing naturally along southern aspects in Turnagain Pass this week and areas with existing glide cracks or recent debris from glide avalanches should be avoided. Other hazards to pay attention to today are cornice fall and wet loose avalanches that could become more active in the second half of the day due to solar heating. There is an outside chance of finding a small isolated slab avalanche on steep north facing terrain, so stay alert to snow surface conditions.
Another glide release along Seattle Ridge in the first major gully feature south of the motorized uptrack (lookers right debris pile in this photo). Photo 4.13.22
|Signal Word||Size (D scale)||Simple Descriptor|
|Small||1||Unlikely to bury a person|
|Large||2||Can bury a person|
|Very Large||3||Can destroy a house|
|Historic||4 & 5||Can destroy part or all of a village|
It is another beautiful spring day with mostly clear skies and light winds expected. The sun beating down on the snowpack will be the most likely cause of any avalanches today, with an increased chance of glide avalanches, cornice failures, and wet loose avalanches on steeper terrain in the afternoon. Yesterday there was a cold breeze keeping the snow surface from melting much along the upper elevations near Sunburst and the surface just softened enough to help improve the skiing slightly in the early evening. Temperatures stayed cold enough to preserve dry snow on the surface on northern aspects above roughly 1500′.
Glide avalanche releases have been frequent this week along southern aspects in Turnagain Pass and we expect this trend to continue. It is important to recognize and avoid areas with existing glide cracks or avalanche debris from prior glide avalanches. Sometimes these can release even without an obvious crack on the snow surface. Being involved with a glide avalanche would be catastrophic due to the depth of the glide cracks and the very dense avalanche debris.
Even though this is the fifth day in a row of low danger, there is still an outside chance of finding a lingering slab avalanche on steep north facing terrain today. It is important to maintain safe travel protocols to minimize your groups exposure to an isolated and unexpected avalanche. That means trying to expose only one person at a time in avalanche terrain, spotting your partners, and grouping up in safe areas. All these practices will stack the odds in your favor and should be standard practice for mountain travel regardless of avalanche danger level.
Glide releases along the southern aspect of Tincan Proper. Photo 4.13.22
Yesterday: Clear skies and light winds with temperatures rising into the 40’s in the afternoon at lower elevations and staying relatively cool in the upper 20’s at upper elevations.
Today: Another day of calm winds and quiet weather with a chance for clouds to start building in coastal areas in the afternoon as a low pressure system starts to move into the area tonight and tomorrow.
Tomorrow: A low pressure system currently centered in the Bearing sea will move east over the next two days, bringing increased cloud cover and wind speeds. Winds are expected to be light to moderate and start increasing Friday morning. No significant precipitation is expected in the forecast area.
PRECIPITATION 24-hour data (6am – 6am)
|Temp Avg (F)||Snow (in)||Water (in)||Snow Depth (in)|
|Center Ridge (1880′)||32||0||0||110|
|Summit Lake (1400′)||31||0||0||38|
|Alyeska Mid (1700′)||33||0||0||NA|
RIDGETOP 24-hour data (6am – 6am)
|Temp Avg (F)||Wind Dir||Wind Avg (mph)||Wind Gust (mph)|
|Seattle Ridge (2400′)||29||N||2||5|
|05/22/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan||Nick D'Alessio|
|05/12/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan, Sunburst, Magnum, Cornbiscuit||Heather Thamm|
|05/07/23||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan – Bear Tracks||CNFAIC Staff|
|05/05/23||Turnagain||Observation: Seattle Ridge||AS/ WW Forecaster|
|05/02/23||Turnagain||Observation: Cornbiscuit||Schauer/ Sturgess Forecaster|
|05/02/23||Turnagain||Observation: Seward Hwy Turnagain Pass||Joel Curtis|
|04/30/23||Turnagain||Observation: Magnum||Ayla, Kit Crosby, Barton|
|04/29/23||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan||John Sykes|
|04/28/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Taylor Pass/Pastoral||Schauer/ Creighton Forecaster|
|04/28/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan||Andy Moderow|
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: firstname.lastname@example.org
|Area||Status||Weather & Riding Conditions|
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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.