Share your feedback! Share your feedback!

How’s our new website?
How can we better serve you?

Turnagain Pass Avalanche Forecast RSS

Archives
ARCHIVED FORECAST - All forecasts expire after 24 hours from the posting date/time.
Issued
Mon, March 8th, 2010 - 7:00AM
Expires
Tue, March 9th, 2010 - 7:00AM
Forecaster
CNFAIC Staff
The Bottom Line

Good morning backcountry travelers this is Lisa Portune with the Chugach National Forest Avalanche Information Center on Monday, March 8th 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).

WEATHER ROUNDUP

After a beautiful bluebird day yesterday, anCNFAIC Staff major storm moved onshore early this morning. Hold onto your hats as this storm is shaping up to be like last Friday’s storm. The NWS has issued a blizzard warning in effect until 6pm tonight. It started snowing around 3am this morning, so only a couple inches of snow have fallen so far. Ridgetop winds started to pick up around midnight last night and are currently averaging 40-50mph out of the east gusting to 63mph. Temperatures have increased by about 10 degrees in the last 6 hours and currently range from 30F at sea level to 12F at 3800 feet. It is snowing sideways in Girdwood right now, and the winds are plastering the snow to my window as I write. We could get up to 2 feet of snow at the higher elevations today with an additional 6-14 inches this evening. Gale to storm force easterly winds averaging 40-65mph and hurricane force gusts over 75mph are forecasted for today.

AVALANCHE DISCUSSION

The avalanche danger will increase to HIGH today as this storm progresses. Human-triggered avalanches will be very likely on steep windloaded slopes with natural avalanches likely on actively loading slopes greater than 35 degrees. Storm force easterly winds and up to 2 feet of snow today at the higher elevations equals dangerous avalanche conditions. Travel in avalanche terrain is not recommended.

The cold light density snow that is falling right now at the higher elevations will be the foundation for the rest of today’s snowfall, so I would expect the initial bonding with the old snow surface to be poor. The old snow surface varies from powder to soft windslab to supportable hardslab to windhammered boilerplate. There are probably thin suncrusts on southerly aspects as well from yesterday’s intense sunshine. In CNFAIC Staff words, there are many areas with slick bed surfaces for today’s avalanches. As temperatures warm up and the wind continues to form fresh windslabs, an increasingly top-heavy slab will form on top of the lighter density snow creating unstable conditions. Visibly drifting snow and shooting cracks are the most obvious clues to windslab formation.

A glide crack in the upper Girdwood Valley around 2300 feet avalanched yesterday morning when temperatures bottomed out to the low single digits. We also received a report of some wet loose snow sluffs triggered by skiers yesterday on the steep southerly slopes of Goat Mountain in the upper Girdwood Valley. Despite the single digit temperatures, the March sun was strong enough to melt the snow surface.

Matt will issue the next advisory tomorrow morning at 7am. Thanks and have a great day.

The NWS weather forecast for:

WESTERN PRINCE WILLIAM SOUND-

INCLUDING…WHITTIER…SEWARD…GIRDWOOD…MOOSE PASS

500 AM AKST MON MAR 8 2010

…BLIZZARD WARNING NOW IN EFFECT UNTIL 6 PM AKST THIS EVENING

THROUGH PORTAGE VALLEY AND TURNAGAIN ARM…

.TODAY…SNOW. SNOW AND BLOWING SNOW REDUCING VISIBILITY TO ONE

QUARTER MILE OR LESS THROUGH PORTAGE VALLEY AND TURNAGAIN ARM. SNOW

MAY BE HEAVY AT TIMES IN THE MORNING. SNOW ACCUMULATION 5 TO 12

INCHES…HEAVIEST NORTH OF MOOSE PASS. HIGHS IN THE LOWER 30S. NORTH

TO EAST WIND 15 TO 30 EXCEPT EAST 50 TO 65 MPH THROUGH PORTAGE VALLEY

AND TURNAGAIN ARM.

.TONIGHT…SNOW…POSSIBLY MIXING WITH RAIN AT SEA LEVEL IN THE

EVENING. SNOW ACCUMULATION 2 TO 6 INCHES. LOWS IN THE MID 20S TO

LOWER 30S. NORTH AND EAST WIND 15 TO 30 MPH BECOMING SOUTH AND EAST

AFTER MIDNIGHT. THROUGH PORTAGE VALLEY AND TURNAGAIN ARM…EAST WIND

30 TO 45 MPH DECREASING TO 15 TO 30 MPH AFTER MIDNIGHT.

.TUESDAY…SNOW SHOWERS. SNOW ACCUMULATION 1 TO 4 INCHES. HIGHS

IN THE MID 20S TO LOWER 30S. SOUTHEAST WIND 10 TO 25 MPH.

TEMPERATURE / PRECIPITATION

SEWARD 33 30 30 / 100 100 80

GIRDWOOD 31 27 29 / 90 90 80

WEATHER STATION SUMMARY for Turnagain Pass:

-3800′ Sunburst Wx Station-

recorded light winds yesterday averaging 5-15mph out of the west shifting to the south. The current temp is 12F (14 degrees warmer than yesterday) with gale force winds averaging 40-50mph out of the east gusting to 63mph.

-2600′ Seattle Ridge Wx Station-

is currently recording moderate southeasterly winds averaging 20mph with gusts to 34mph.

-1800′ Center Ridge Wx Station-

recorded no new snow in the last 24 hours. The current temp is 19F (13 degrees warmer than yesterday) with a total snowpack depth of 122 inches (3 inches of settlement since yesterday).

Thanks to our sponsors!
Mon, March 8th, 2010
Alpine
Above 2,500'
High (4)
Avalanche risk
Treeline
1,000'-2,500'
High (4)
Avalanche risk
Below Treeline
Below 1,000'
High (4)
Avalanche risk
Alpine
Above 2,500'
Avalanche risk
High (4)
Treeline
1,000'-2,500'
Avalanche risk
High (4)
Below Treeline
Below 1,000'
Avalanche risk
High (4)
Danger Scale:
No Rating (0)
Low (1)
Moderate (2)
Considerable (3)
High (4)
Extreme (5)
Observations
Recent Observations for Turnagain Pass
Date Region Location
05/06/20 Turnagain Avalanche: Pastoral Peak, north face
04/10/20 Turnagain Avalanche: Wolverine
04/10/20 Turnagain Observation: Eddies lookers right shoulder
04/09/20 Turnagain Observation: Bench Peak
04/04/20 Turnagain Observation: Tincan
04/04/20 Turnagain Observation: Pete’s North
03/26/20 Turnagain Avalanche: Tincan – Proper (SW facing)
03/26/20 Turnagain Avalanche: Seattle Ridge
03/25/20 Turnagain Avalanche: Sunburst Uptrack @ 2000′
03/24/20 Turnagain Observation: Turnagain – Road Observations
Riding Areas
Updated Mon, October 26th, 2020

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: mailroom_r10_chugach@fs.fed.us

Area Status Weather & Riding Conditions
Glacier District
Johnson Pass
Closed
Placer River
Closed
Skookum Drainage
Closed
Turnagain Pass
Closed
Twentymile
Closed
Seward District
Carter Lake
Closed
Lost Lake Trail
Closed
Primrose Trail
Closed
Resurrection Pass Trail
Closed
Snug Harbor
Closed
South Fork Snow River Corridor
Closed
Summit Lake
Closed

Subscribe to Turnagain Pass
Avalanche Forecast by Email

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.