Fresh wind slab from yesterday’s storm is the most likely problem to find today. This should be a manageable avalanche concern – not dangerous unless you jump into high consequence terrain without sluffing out the run first. I expect a lot of slopes will be easily triggered by skiers today, but this is light density snow and should behave in a predictable manner. It’s the perfect scenario for controlled ski cutting (in areas of safe terrain exposure). The CONSIDERABLE danger rating is for likely human triggered avalanches – of small size, in many areas.
The good skiing will probably be sheltered areas where wind didn’t have a lot of effect.
We’ve been tracking multiple buried weak layers for quite some time. The big meltdown in January caused many large deep slab avalanches, but since cooler temperatures took over, the mountains have gone dormant. We still have some concerns about the persistent weak layers (persistent means they stick around for a long time). The areas of greatest concern include elevations above 3500 feet where the rain and warm temperatures had less effect on the snowpack. It may still be possible for a person to initiate a collapse and trigger a deep avalanche.
This is a MODERATE type concern of low likelihood but higher consequence.
The big news in the weather history is the storm that blew through yesterday. Areas hardest hit by this storm appear to be glacier regions of the southeast Kenai peninsula, Prince William Sound, Turnagain Pass (16 inches?) and Grandview (10-12 inches). If instrumentation is reading correctly, snow density is somewhere around 5%, or very light dry powder. Wind at the ridgetops was blowing 40s-60s mph on Sunburst from an ENE direction. Temperatures during the storm started cold, in the teens and low 20s and rose to what they are currently (mid to high 20s).
Today – mostly cloudy skies, temperatures in the 20s, and a light NW wind.
Weather trend looks to be colder and windier from the north going into next week. No major storms are on the horizon for the coming week.
|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: 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.