We saw a few small natural wind slabs yesterday on Magnum that probably released during the last wind event on 12.1.22. Otherwise the last observed avalanche activity were small natural wind slabs last weekend during the 11.25-26 outflow wind event.
|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|
The last known avalanche activity on the facet layer on the ground was back on 11.13.22, nearly three weeks ago. We are keeping it in the forecast due to uncertainty about the distribution and sensitivity of this layer at higher elevations. Our recent snowpit tests have shown a mixture of results, with some areas producing full propagation on this layer and other areas having no results. This is pretty typical for a deeply buried persistent weak layer. While we think it is unlikely for a person to trigger an avalanche 2-4′ deep on this layer today, we are still looking for more information from higher elevations (above 3000′) so please submit an observation if you get a chance to test this layer today!
There is also a possibility of finding a lingering wind slab up to 1′ deep today. The most recent round of wind slabs formed on 12.1.22 on top of a layer of near surface facets which can help them stay reactive longer than normal. These are most likely to be found in steep terrain along upper elevation ridgelines and cross loaded gullies. Keep an eye out for firm hollow feeling snow and shooting cracks to identify areas that could be holding onto a stubborn wind slab.
Finally, the clear skies this week have lead to faceting on the surface in areas protected from the wind which can lead to fast running loose snow avalanches (aka sluffs). If you are travelling in steeper terrain today be aware of your sluff because they can easily knock you off balance. We recommend always using safe travel practices to limit the exposure of your group to avalanche terrain. Travelling one at a time, spacing out, and always spotting your partners are critical to manage your avalanche risk even when it has been awhile since a recent snowfall event.
Yesterday: A strong inversion was in place yesterday, with temperatures remaining in the single digits at the road elevation and reaching up to the low 30s at upper elevations. Winds were light, averaging 5-10 mph with gusts into the teens at upper elevations. High clouds moved into the area but the sun still shined through.
Today: Temperatures are getting downright balmy at upper elevations, as of 4am Sunburst weather station is reporting 35 F and Portage is reporting 2 F. That is one strong inversion! Temperatures at lower and mid elevations are expected to increase slightly later this afternoon, but the inversion should remain in place through the weekend. Winds will remain light with averages of 0-10 mph today. Some high level cloud cover is expected in the area today.
Tomorrow: Sunday looks like a repeat of Saturday except with clearer skies. A storm should to move into the area on Monday and provide us with a little refresh of snowfall on Monday afternoon and evening.
PRECIPITATION 24-hour data (6am – 6am)
|Temp Avg (F)||Snow (in)||Water (in)||Snow Depth (in)|
|Center Ridge (1880′)||21||0||0||22|
|Summit Lake (1400′)||9||0||0||15|
|Alyeska Mid (1700′)||21||0||0||20|
|Bear Valley (132′)||6||0||0||–|
RIDGETOP 24-hour data (6am – 6am)
|Temp Avg (F)||Wind Dir||Wind Avg (mph)||Wind Gust (mph)|
|Seattle Ridge (2400′)||29||SW||2||7|
|01/29/23||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan Backdoor||AAS-Level 1 1/27-1/30|
|01/28/23||Turnagain||Observation: Sunburst||Brooke Edwards|
|01/28/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Seattle Ridge||W Wagner|
|01/28/23||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan Common||Tony Naciuk|
|01/27/23||Turnagain||Observation: Sunburst||John Sykes|
|01/27/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Lynx Creek||Megan Guinn / W Wagner|
|01/25/23||Turnagain||Observation: Cornbiscuit||John Sykes Forecaster|
|01/22/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan||Schauer/ Guinn|
|01/21/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Seattle Ridge||Elias Holt|
|01/21/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Lynx drainage – avalanche||CNFAIC Staff|
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|
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.