Wet avalanches will again be our primary concern today likely becoming active on southerly slopes late in the day as the snowpack continues to absorb solar radiation, subsequently weakening the bonds between individual grains. This is the “melt” process of the melt-freeze cycle. Pay attention to the snow surface throughout the day. Indicators of the avalanche danger rising will come in the form of point releases, roller balls on steep slopes and a boot penetration above your knees. If you are seeing any of these signs it’ll be a good idea to avoid steep slopes on the south end of the compass, as these are all indicators of our snowpack losing strength.
As seen in this photo below, sun induced slabs are also of concern this week. These have been relegated to the upper most layer of our snowpack with no signs of stepping down into older snow, though a potential for wide propagation exists.
Today will be the 5th day in a row of a melt-freeze cycle with cornices undergoing the same diurnal changes as the snowpack. Once the day heats up and individual snow bonds weaken, cornices will be more likely to fail spontaneously. As was the case on Goat Mountain (Girdwood Valley) Tuesday, cornice failure may trigger a slab avalanche once it fails, neither of which you want to be involved with today. Continue to use good judgment around cornices and avoid prolonged exposure, specifically late in the day.
There is still some uncertainty on northerly slopes where shallow wind slabs have been found to be reactive on buried surface hoar and near surface facets. The good news is that our mid-pack is showing respectable signs of strength and wind slabs from last weeks storm don’t appear to be stepping down into deeper layers.
Yesterday was another beautiful spring day in the backcountry. SE winds in the teens and low 20’s kept the snow surface cool enough that we didn’t experience much avalanche activity.
Today looks to be another warm day on tap with temperatures reaching mid-40’s at 1000 feet and winds very light out of the east. Direct sun and less wind than yesterday will contribute to a rise in the avalanche danger this afternoon. No precipitation is expected to fall today.
Temps will again fall overnight though they may not rebound quite as high as we’ve seen this week as a colder air mass begins to move into our area from northwestern Canada.
Kevin will issue the next advisory on Friday, April 5th.
|01/26/21||Turnagain||Observation: Ridge near Seattle Creek Weather Station||Nick Ohlrich|
|01/26/21||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan Alpine||Eric Roberts|
|01/25/21||Turnagain||Observation: Center ridge||Simon Garrard|
|01/24/21||Turnagain||Observation: Pete’s||Mike Records|
|01/24/21||Turnagain||Observation: Triangle bowl||Cooper Street|
|01/24/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Eddies||Johnston-Bloom / Moderow Forecaster|
|01/24/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Eddie’s||Jose Ramos-Leon|
|01/24/21||Turnagain||Observation: Corn Biscuit||Troy Tempel|
|01/23/21||Turnagain||Observation: Seattle Ridge||A Schauer Forecaster|
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.