There were two skier/snowboarder triggered avalanches on Tincan yesterday, Saturday 2/2. There was no other avalanche activity seen or reported. It sounds like these were soft wind slabs formed on a rollover overlying a hard crust. Today similar conditions remain as winds have continued to blow moderate to strong from the east overnight, though should be on a decline through the day.
If skies clear enough today for travel above treeline, wind slab avalanches and cornice breaks will be the primary concern. Watching for areas with current or recent wind deposited snow will be key. These are likely to be found in the usual places: lee sides of ridgelines, rollovers and cross-loaded in gullies and sub-ridges. In areas around treeline where an old melt-freeze crusts sits under the snow that has accumulated the past few days, these slabs could be quite tender still as was seen yesterday. Slabs could range anywhere from 6” to 2’ and sussed out by watching for smooth rounded surfaces, stiff feeling snow and shooting cracks.
Below treeline, intermittent rain has been falling on snow for two days and today will be the third. Small wet loose avalanches were seen Friday with no new activity noted yesterday. The Turnagain Pass and Summit areas have only seen ~.5” of rain below 2,000’ during the past 48 hours while the Girdwood Valley has seen double that, ~1” in 48 hours. In valleys such as Girdwood and Portage, with higher amounts of rainfall, wet avalanches are possible.
It has been nearly three weeks now since the last known deep slab avalanche occurred. However, the weak early season snow still resides at the bottom of the pack and therefore the deep slab problem still resides in the bottom of our minds. Triggering one of these large and dangerous avalanches is low but the consequences are high. keeping to safe travel practices remains a must.
Off and on rain and snow showers associated with a warm southeasterly flow has been dominating our weather the past two days. Conditions at 1,000′ on the Pass have been quite soggy. Temperatures have been in the upper 30’s F below 1,000′ and in the upper 20’s F at 3,000′. The easterly flow on the ridgetops has been averaging 25mph with gusts in the 50’s. As far as precipitation, the rain/snow line has been hovering around 1,500′ with water numbers listed below.
Rundown on water numbers:
24hr totals 48hr totals
Turnagain Pass (1880′) .3 € .5 €
Girdwood Valley (1700′ / 2800′) .7 / 1 € 1.3 / 1.9 €
Summit Lake (1400′) 0 € .2″
Today, we can expect the rain snow line to drop slightly with .25″ of rain below 1,000′ and 2-5 € of snow above. Precipitation should begin to taper off through the day but skies look to remain cloudy with low visibility (could be a great day for watching the Super Bowl). Temperatures should decrease slightly to 32F at 1,000′ and mid 20’s at 3,000′. Winds are forecast to abate today to the 10-30mph range and shift to a more southerly direction.
Fitz will issue our next advisory tomorrow morning, February 4th.
|01/19/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Cornbiscuit||Schauer/ Johnston-Bloom Forecaster|
|01/18/21||Turnagain||Observation: Turnagain Pass Road Obs.||A Schauer Forecaster|
|01/16/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan Trees||A Schauer Forecaster|
|01/15/21||Turnagain||Observation: Sunburst||Schauer/ Wunnicke Forecaster|
|01/13/21||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan||Johnston-Bloom / Moderow Forecaster|
|01/13/21||Turnagain||Observation: Center Ridge Meadows||Alaska Avalanche School Rec Level 1 Roberts|
|01/12/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Seattle Ridge/Center Ridge||A Schauer Forecaster|
|01/11/21||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan Trees||Schauer/ Roberts Forecaster|
|01/10/21||Turnagain||Observation: Center Ridge Meadows||Alaska Avalanche School Pro 1 Course Latosuo|
|01/10/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan trees||Anonymous|
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.