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ARCHIVED FORECAST - All forecasts expire after 24 hours from the posting date/time.
Issued
Tue, December 2nd, 2014 - 7:00AM
Expires
Wed, December 3rd, 2014 - 7:00AM
Forecaster
John Fitzgerald
Avalanche risk The Bottom Line

The avalanche danger is MODERATE today in the alpine, where newly formed wind slabs up to 10 € in depth will be easy to trigger on steep leeward slopes.   At treeline the danger is LOW, with the exception of isolated wind loaded pockets in steep terrain.   Below treeline the snowpack is still too shallow to warrant a danger rating.

Early season hazards such as shallowly buried rocks, stumps and small glide cracks require careful travel, especially below treeline.

——————————————————————–

The next advisory will be Thursday Dec 4th at 7am.

Avalanche Outlook for Wednesday: Expect wind slabs to continue to build at a modest rate through Wednesday.   A pattern of unsettled weather will bring some additional light snowfall and enough wind to keep the danger at MODERATE in the alpine for Wednesday.

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Tue, December 2nd, 2014
Alpine
Above 2,500'
Moderate (2)
Avalanche risk
Treeline
1,000'-2,500'
Low (1)
Avalanche risk
Below Treeline
Below 1,000'
No Rating (0)
Avalanche risk
Alpine
Above 2,500'
Avalanche risk
Moderate (2)
Treeline
1,000'-2,500'
Avalanche risk
Low (1)
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
  • 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

A modest amount of new snow combined with older low density snow and steady winds out of the East/Southeast have formed wind slabs on leeward aspects.  These slabs will be sensitive to human triggers and will be up to 10” in depth.  Expect them to be easiest to trigger as they are forming.  Keep in mind that while the predominant winds have been out of the East, wind changes direction as it interacts with terrain.  Your best bet is to be on the lookout for shooting cracks in the snow, upside down snow, or surfaces that are smooth and pillowy.  These are signs of recently formed wind slab.  Avoiding these wind loaded areas, especially in terrain over 35 degrees will be the best way to manage this avalanche problem today.

Weather
Tue, December 2nd, 2014

A large Low pressure system centered in the Bering Sea that has made its way eastward along the Aleutians has brought with it precip and winds to the mountains around Eastern Turnagain Arm.   Snowfall amounts have been greater to the West and less on Turnagain Pass.   Weather station data from the Girdwood Valley is currently unavailable.

A warm front associated with this Low has brought slightly warmer air over the area this morning.   Fortunately temps have remained cool enough to keep the precip in the form of snow. As this frontal boundary passes expect temperatures to cool and light snow to continue into the daytime hours.

Today we can expect another 3-5 inches of snow.   Temperatures at 1,000′ will be in the low 30s F.   Ridge top winds will be in the 10-20 mph range.

PRECIPITATION 24-hour data (6am – 6am)

  Temp Avg (F) Snow (in) Water (in) Snow Depth (in)
Center Ridge (1880′) 25  2  .2  20
Summit Lake (1400′)  24  3  .3  5
Alyeska Mid (1700′)  n/a  n/a  n/a  n/a

RIDGETOP 24-hour data (6am – 6am)

  Temp Avg (F) Wind Dir Wind Avg (mph) Wind Gust (mph)
Sunburst (3812′)  19  E  13  30
Seattle Ridge (2400′)  21  SE  18  37
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Riding Areas
Updated Tue, January 12th, 2021

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
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Johnson Pass
Open
No parking in turnaround at end of the road near the outhouse.
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Open
Early season conditions exist, including thin ice on rivers, swamps and lakes. Please do not ride along Railroad tracks. Cross tracks at 90 degree angle and clear the right of way.
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Open
Early season conditions exist, including thin ice on rivers, swamps and lakes. Please do not ride along Railroad tracks. Cross tracks at 90 degree angle and clear the right of way.
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Primrose Trail
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Closed for the 2020/21 winter season.
Snug Harbor
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South Fork Snow River Corridor
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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.