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Turnagain Pass Avalanche Forecast RSS

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ARCHIVED FORECAST - All forecasts expire after 24 hours from the posting date/time.
Issued
Wed, April 16th, 2014 - 7:00AM
Expires
Thu, April 17th, 2014 - 7:00AM
Forecaster
Kevin Wright
The Bottom Line

New snow and rain is a minor factor in the current snowpack.  Wind slab from the snowfall a few days ago is possible in steep terrain.  Persistent warm temperatures are increasing the chance for wet avalanche activity, especially at lower elevations.  

The danger rating will be at  MODERATE  both above and below treeline for the reasons mentioned.  Avalanche size is expected to be small, but they may be possible in many areas.  

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Wed, April 16th, 2014
Alpine
Above 2,500'
Moderate (2)
Avalanche risk
Treeline
1,000'-2,500'
Moderate (2)
Avalanche risk
Below Treeline
Below 1,000'
Moderate (2)
Avalanche risk
Alpine
Above 2,500'
Avalanche risk
Moderate (2)
Treeline
1,000'-2,500'
Avalanche risk
Moderate (2)
Below Treeline
Below 1,000'
Avalanche risk
Moderate (2)
Danger Scale:
No Rating (0)
Low (1)
Moderate (2)
Considerable (3)
High (4)
Extreme (5)
Avalanche Problem 1
  • Wet Loose
    Wet Loose
Wet Loose
Wet Loose avalanches are the release of wet unconsolidated snow or slush. These avalanches typically occur within layers of wet snow near the surface of the snowpack, but they may quickly gouge into lower snowpack layers. Like Loose Dry Avalanches, they start at a point and entrain snow as they move downhill, forming a fan-shaped avalanche. Other names for loose-wet avalanches include point-release avalanches or sluffs. Loose Wet avalanches can trigger slab avalanches that break into deeper snow layers.
More info at Avalanche.org

Have we turned the corner to Spring meltdown?  I don’t think we are quite there in the avalanche sense, but cold below-freezing temperatures are getting to be rare.  With rain and no freezing below 2000 feet, watch for surface snow to be pushable, especially late in the day.  If loose, water saturated snow gets to be deeper than about 6 inches, it is a sign that the snowpack is losing strength.  

Wet avalanche activity is most likely to be found below 2000 feet late in the day.  If the sun is shining, then south aspects may be more prone to this problem.

Avalanche Problem 2
  • Wind Slabs
    Wind Slabs
Wind Slabs
Wind Slab avalanches are the release of a cohesive layer of snow (a slab) formed by the wind. Wind typically transports snow from the upwind sides of terrain features and deposits snow on the downwind side. Wind slabs are often smooth and rounded and sometimes sound hollow, and can range from soft to hard. Wind slabs that form over a persistent weak layer (surface hoar, depth hoar, or near-surface facets) may be termed Persistent Slabs or may develop into Persistent Slabs.
More info at Avalanche.org

We saw evidence of one small wind slab 2 days ago on the RWIS camera pointed at Eddy’s.  This is very minor for an avalanche, but it is an indicator of larger possibilities in bigger terrain.  We may still be able to trigger pockets like this in the higher starting zones around Turnagain Pass.  

Wind during that last storm on the 13th-14th was predominately from the east.  Look for more wind slab formation on west aspects.  

 

Weather
Wed, April 16th, 2014

A shot of snow a few days ago laid a thin layer of new snow on the surface, but did not produce much for avalanche activity.  

Today’s weather will include some rain, mixed with snow at higher elevations.  Snowfall amount will be miniscule.  Temperatures are barely reaching freezing at night up to about 2000 feet. Variable wind to 10mph.  

The rest of the work week looks like the same pattern, with a chance of rain and warm temperatures.  The next chance for sun comes on Saturday and Sunday.

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Riding Areas
Updated Mon, October 26th, 2020

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: mailroom_r10_chugach@fs.fed.us

Area Status Weather & Riding Conditions
Glacier District
Johnson Pass
Closed
Placer River
Closed
Skookum Drainage
Closed
Turnagain Pass
Closed
Twentymile
Closed
Seward District
Carter Lake
Closed
Lost Lake Trail
Closed
Primrose Trail
Closed
Resurrection Pass Trail
Closed
Snug Harbor
Closed
South Fork Snow River Corridor
Closed
Summit Lake
Closed

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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.