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Fri, October 28th, 2011 - 7:00AM
Sat, October 29th, 2011 - 7:00AM
Kevin Wright
Avalanche risk The Bottom Line

This is Kevin Wright with the Chugach National Forest Avalanche Information Center on Friday, October 28th. After that last shot of snow on Tuesday the current conditions are worth a quick discussion as we go into the weekend.

The storm on Tuesday dropped up to 20 inches of snow in some areas of the Kenai peninsula. It came in with intensity and caused a number of reported avalanches. If you drive towards Girdwood from Anchorage, take note of the avalanche that came down on Bird Flats close to the highway. This happened during the height of that last storm. Glide avalanches, breaking full depth to the ground are being reported throughout the region. Higher elevation zones, including all the popular backcountry areas got the same shot of snow and wind. The avalanche season is here!

As we go into the weekend, be aware that a shallow snowpack can be just as dangerous as a deep snowpack. Do not assume that early season conditions are somehow safer than late season. Be sure to carry your beacon, shovel, and probe. Travel with a partner, and constantly evaluate the snow conditions as you go.

AnCNFAIC Staff storm is forecasted to hit us in the next day, so we can assume that avalanches will again become more likely with more snow and wind over the weekend. The snow and rain will be more focused towards Seward and the Southern Kenai peninsula.

We will be updating this advisory on an irregular basis until we have the resources to resume a daily schedule. Check back for updates and keep sending us your observations from the backcountry.

Fri, October 28th, 2011
Above 2,500'
0 - No Rating
Avalanche risk
0 - No Rating
Avalanche risk
Below Treeline
Below 1,000'
0 - No Rating
Avalanche risk
0 - No Rating
1 - Low
2 - Moderate
3 - Considerable
4 - High
5 - Extreme
Avalanche risk Avalanche risk Avalanche risk Avalanche risk Avalanche risk
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.
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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.