Share your feedback! Share your feedback!

How’s our new website?
How can we better serve you?

Turnagain Pass Avalanche Forecast RSS

Archives
ARCHIVED FORECAST - All forecasts expire after 24 hours from the posting date/time.
Issued
Fri, November 14th, 2014 - 7:00AM
Expires
Sat, November 15th, 2014 - 7:00AM
Forecaster
Wendy Wagner
The Bottom Line

Springtime in November?   Unseasonably warm temperatures continue to delay winter, but not necessarily avalanche season.

Avalanche activity over the past week has quieted down substantially during the past few days, however there are still a few things to be on the lookout for. First, Glide avalanches: Be aware of glide cracks and avoid being near or under them. Second, wet avalanches: Keep in mind wet sluffs could be initiated if you find yourself in snow that is soft and saturated.

*We will continue to post intermittent updates. Advisories are scheduled to begin Saturday, November 22nd.
For the most up to date information keep tabs on our observation page. Please, send us an observation if you are getting out this weekend!!

Thanks to our sponsors!
Fri, November 14th, 2014
Alpine
Above 2,500'
No Rating (0)
Avalanche risk
Treeline
1,000'-2,500'
No Rating (0)
Avalanche risk
Below Treeline
Below 1,000'
No Rating (0)
Avalanche risk
Alpine
Above 2,500'
Avalanche risk
No Rating (0)
Treeline
1,000'-2,500'
Avalanche risk
No Rating (0)
Below Treeline
Below 1,000'
Avalanche risk
No Rating (0)
Danger Scale:
No Rating (0)
Low (1)
Moderate (2)
Considerable (3)
High (4)
Extreme (5)
Avalanche Problem 1
  • Glide Avalanches
    Glide Avalanches
Glide Avalanches
Glide Avalanches are the release of the entire snow cover as a result of gliding over the ground. Glide avalanches can be composed of wet, moist, or almost entirely dry snow. They typically occur in very specific paths, where the slope is steep enough and the ground surface is relatively smooth. They are often proceeded by full depth cracks (glide cracks), though the time between the appearance of a crack and an avalanche can vary between seconds and months. Glide avalanches are unlikely to be triggered by a person, are nearly impossible to forecast, and thus pose a hazard that is extremely difficult to manage.
More info at Avalanche.org

For anyone venturing to Turnagain Pass, it is clear there is not much snow below treeline and a lot of old avalanche activity above treeline. Although things have quieted down avalanche-wise, glide avalanches remain something to keep on your radar. These are simply unpredictable and destructive avalanches. The good thing is most of the time glides are preceded by a slowly opening crack and therefore easy to identify and avoid. Hence, be aware of glide cracks and avoid being under them.

Below is a photo of several glide cracks on the west nose of Eddies (popular ski/snowboard slope). This is just an example of how much glide activity is present right now. This photo is from 5 days ago and some have released but many are still in wait.


Matt Murphy photo from Nov 9th.

Avalanche Problem 2
  • 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

With persistent warm temperatures, including a spike on Thursday (chart below), the snowpack could be fairly wet near treeline. The clear skies are likely freezing the surface to some degree but there also could be areas where the snow remains soft. Triggering a wet loose slide into a terrain trap comes to mind as something to be aware of in soft saturated snow.

Check out the warm ridgetop temperatures at the Sunburst weather station (3812′) below. And, two days ago on Nov 11th the Girdwood Yard station in Old Girdwood recorded a record high temperature for November: 50F!

Weather
Fri, November 14th, 2014

After a 10-day long bout of warm, wet and windy weather, the wet and windy parts have moved west but the warm remains. For the next week or so a complex set of low pressure systems will spin to our south and continue to pump warm air our way. Sunday and mid-week there may be some moisture associated with the southerly flow, but all in all, winter remains on the horizon.

Observations
Recent Observations for Turnagain Pass
Date Region Location
05/06/20 Turnagain Avalanche: Pastoral Peak, north face
04/10/20 Turnagain Avalanche: Wolverine
04/10/20 Turnagain Observation: Eddies lookers right shoulder
04/09/20 Turnagain Observation: Bench Peak
04/04/20 Turnagain Observation: Tincan
04/04/20 Turnagain Observation: Pete’s North
03/26/20 Turnagain Avalanche: Tincan – Proper (SW facing)
03/26/20 Turnagain Avalanche: Seattle Ridge
03/25/20 Turnagain Avalanche: Sunburst Uptrack @ 2000′
03/24/20 Turnagain Observation: Turnagain – Road Observations
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

Subscribe to Turnagain Pass
Avalanche Forecast by Email

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.