Wet avalanches will be a concern in the afternoon, mostly on sunny south facing slopes and primarily at lower elevations. Overnight temperatures briefly dipped below freezing at sea level last night, which is colder than two nights ago.
Sometime soon we expect to see a more dramatic warmup of the entire snowpack, at which point stability will become a major concern with larger avalanches a possibility. I don’t think we are at that point today, but it can be a tough threshold to predict unless we actually see it happening. Backcountry travel should be more careful late in the day as warmer temperatures cause stability to get worse. If you start seeing spontaneous avalanche activity and you can sink your foot deep into the snow with ease, it’s time to be back at the car or another safe location.
You can still find winter at higher elevations. The recent storm dropped at least 5 inches of new snow in some areas, which will be deeper on wind loaded slopes. Be aware that this new snow could be sitting on slick melt/freeze crusts, especially on south facing slopes.
I continue to be impressed at the size of looming cornices this late in the season. Colder than normal temperatures have been keeping ridgetop melting to a minimum. Just like wet slab problems, cornices will lose strength as they heat up late in the day. They will become increasingly unstable and may collapse spontaneously with warm enough temperatures. Watch your exposure, especially late in the day when temperatures are highest.
Center ridge gained at least half an inch of water equivalent at Turnagain Pass over the last couple days. At higher elevations this means 5 or more inches of new snow.
Temperatures last night dropped to 31 degrees at sea level, colder at higher elevations. We can expect a thin surface crust on the snow this morning.
Today’s weather is expected to be sunny and warm. High temperatures will reach the mid 40s at sea level. A north wind is expected, which may channel into strong wind at Whittier and Seward.
We will issue the next advisory on Saturday, April 27th.
|04/19/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Triangle, Seattle creek||Will Morrison|
|04/18/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Turnagain Pass Road Obs||Andy Moderow|
|04/18/21||Turnagain||Observation: Seattle Ridge, approximately 300 yards south of the up track||Brent Byrne|
|04/17/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Road obs||Johnston-Bloom / Moderow Forecaster|
|04/16/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Seattle Ridge||Wendy Wagner Forecaster|
|04/16/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Turnagain Pass, non-motorized side seen from Seattle Ridge||CNFAIC Staff Forecaster|
|04/16/21||Turnagain||Observation: Sunburst||Lance breeding|
|04/15/21||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan||Schauer/ Rothman Forecaster|
|04/13/21||Turnagain||Observation: Turnagain Pass Road Obs||A Schauer Forecaster|
|04/12/21||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan||Johnston-Bloom / Latosuo 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: email@example.com
|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.