The main concerns today are more associated with mountain travel than with avalanches. A weak, shallow and thin snowpack warrants caution as rocks and stumps can be found everywhere. In the higher elevations snow densities are inconsistent resulting in pockets of stiff snow in an otherwise soft and loose snowpack. A slick crust will form as temps begin to cool slightly in the next day. This will make travel challenging in many areas. If you head into the mountains today pay attention to these real hazards.
GENERAL SNOWPACK DISCUSSION
After roughly a week of clear weather the snowpack has shown signs of weakening (faceting). Beginning on 12/4 warm moist air started saturating the top layer of the snowpack. While this has weakened the snow surface, it has not been wet or warm enough to de stabilize the snowpack. We will be paying close attention to this new snow surface as it forms. It will be important to note if there is still weak snow below it (likely) as well as what falls on top of it with the next storm system.
Warm air aloft has been trying to run over an established ridge of high pressure that is sitting to our east and north. This has resulted in freezing rain up to ridge top levels. Mountain temperatures have been hovering around freezing for the past 24 hours with latest readings of 29 F at Sunburst and 32 F on Seattle ridge. Winds at the Seattle ridge station have averaged in the teens and have been lesser at Sunburst.
Today expect cloudy skies and occasional light precipitation, primarily in the form of rain and freezing rain. Temperatures will remain mild and winds will be light out of the South.
High pressure will re establish itself over South Central AK as we head into the weekend. Expect drier conditions, clearing skies and mild temps through the weekend.
|05/06/20||Turnagain||Avalanche: Pastoral Peak, north face||Andy Duenow|
|04/10/20||Turnagain||Avalanche: Wolverine||Mike Records|
|04/10/20||Turnagain||Observation: Eddies lookers right shoulder||Matt Yoder|
|04/09/20||Turnagain||Observation: Bench Peak||Mike Records|
|04/04/20||Turnagain||Observation: Pete’s North||Anonymous|
|03/26/20||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan – Proper (SW facing)||CNFAIC Staff|
|03/26/20||Turnagain||Avalanche: Seattle Ridge||W Wagner Forecaster|
|03/25/20||Turnagain||Avalanche: Sunburst Uptrack @ 2000′||J. Boisvert|
|03/24/20||Turnagain||Observation: Turnagain – Road Observations||W Wagner 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.