Our primary concern remains in the higher elevation zones, but poor visibility makes travel in those areas difficult. Stormy weather has been ongoing for several days now, and is expected to continue for several more. Storm snow and wind combined with warm temperatures are increasing the avalanche potential across the region.
Yesterday we were somewhat surprised to find softer conditions below treeline where wind has not been affecting the surface. Above treeline is getting raked clean by the wind, resulting in challenging snow conditions. Fresh snow is filling in slowly from the last few days.
With 5-10 inches of snow in the last 24 hours, we expect an elevated and steady danger rating to continue today. Wind slabs should be expected above treeline. The East wind through the pass will be loading West facing slopes and cross loading North and South terrain features.
We continue to find unstable test results in the old November and early December snow. These layers are no longer easy to trigger, but given the right set of circumstances it could result in large avalanches.
Don’t expect to experience collapsing or see shooting cracks on the deep layers any more. These problems are more likely to be quiet and unobtrusive until they awaken in a big way. With both storm layer avalanche problems and persistent slab problems, steep terrain should be avoided until the current storm cycle passes and the snowpack has at least a day to adjust.
The last 24 hours have brought light to moderate snowfall. Weather stations have recorded 0.5 inches (Turnagain Pass) to 1.1 (Alyeska) inches of water equivalent. That adds up to 5-10 inches of snowfall. Wind has also been strong, sweeping ridgelines clean of new snow. Sunburst station had most of the recent wind from the East. Temperatures are staying in the low 30s, with a rain line creeping up to about 1000 feet.
Today looks like more of the same weather. We can expect light to moderate snowfall to continue. Accumulations may be up to 6 inches. Temperatures will hold steady.
The big pulse of moisture in the forecast is expected to happen Friday. Precipitation and wind are both forecasted to increase substantially, starting Friday morning.
|05/18/21||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan Ridge||Joe Kurtak|
|04/30/21||Turnagain||Observation: Sunburst||W Wagner Forecaster|
|04/27/21||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan Ridge||Joe Kurtak|
|04/26/21||Turnagain||Observation: Magnum||Creighton/ Hoople|
|04/25/21||Turnagain||Observation: Sunburst||Nick D'Alessio|
|04/24/21||Turnagain||Observation: Airplane obs||Johnston-Bloom / DiJulia /Hilliard Forecaster|
|04/24/21||Turnagain||Observation: Corn biscuit||Heather Johnson|
|04/23/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Lynx Ck Drainage||W Wagner Forecaster|
|04/23/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Sunburst||Eeva Latosuo|
|04/23/21||Turnagain||Observation: Center Ridge Turnagain pass||Joe Kurtak|
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.