Turnagain Pass Avalanche Forecast
Confidence in the overall stability of our snowpack is increasing each day. It has been a full week since the end of the last storm. Since then we saw a typical rash of avalanches immediately following the storm. The last few days people have really started skiing on steep terrain, without triggering the deep slab that has concerned us.
Come join CNFAIC forecasters this Sunday for a FREE AVALANCHE RESCUE WORKSHOP at Turnagain Pass! Focus will be on beacon practice through avalanche rescue scenarios. We’ll meet in the motorized lot at 10:30am and wrap up by 1:30pm. Skiers and sledders welcome! Please drop a note to email@example.com to reserve a spot for you and your crew, as space is limited.
This problem is increasingly becoming unlikely, but the hazard associated with it could be dangerous if triggered. The storm snow from last week has now settled to about 3+ feet of hard consolidated snow. This slab is strong and difficult to trigger, but it sits at an interface that sometimes shows poor bonding to the older layer below it.
The deep slab is most likely to be triggered from a shallow area where the slab tapers down to 1 foot deep or less. Alternatively a large trigger like multiple skiers or a snowmachine could initiate through a deeper portion of the slab.
Photo – Typical steep terrain with deep slab avalanches evident from the storm and large cornice features.
We got a report of a small wind slab triggered in Pastoral a couple days ago. Click here for observation. An east wind was loading up westerly aspects. Today it is possible to find stiff aging wind slab that could pop when traveled on. Keep this in mind, especially in steeper terrain.
Cornices are big and mature this time of year. As people get onto steeper terrain the cornice factor becomes more significant. In some steep areas they are a mandatory nuisance to be negotiated.
Remember to scope out a safe entrance that avoids a blind approach onto overhanging cornice features. Take a rope for a safe belay if you think your chosen line can’t avoid cornice exposure.
The last storm ended more than a week ago. High pressure and sunny skies have dominated the weather pattern since then. We had some moderate wind on Thursday that blew some snow around.
We are looking at another calm sunny day ahead of us. Temperatures will start out cold this morning, ~10 degrees at valley floor and ~20 degrees at the ridgetops. The sun will quickly warm things up to the high 30s in the afternoon. East wind to 10mph.
Sun will stay in the forecast into mid week. No major storms are on the horizon as the Rex block continues to dominate weather over Alaska.
|05/22/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan||Nick D'Alessio|
|05/12/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan, Sunburst, Magnum, Cornbiscuit||Heather Thamm|
|05/07/23||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan – Bear Tracks||CNFAIC Staff|
|05/05/23||Turnagain||Observation: Seattle Ridge||AS/ WW Forecaster|
|05/02/23||Turnagain||Observation: Cornbiscuit||Schauer/ Sturgess Forecaster|
|05/02/23||Turnagain||Observation: Seward Hwy Turnagain Pass||Joel Curtis|
|04/30/23||Turnagain||Observation: Magnum||Ayla, Kit Crosby, Barton|
|04/29/23||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan||John Sykes|
|04/28/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Taylor Pass/Pastoral||Schauer/ Creighton Forecaster|
|04/28/23||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan||Andy Moderow|
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|
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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.