Turnagain Pass Avalanche Forecast RSS

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ARCHIVED FORECAST - All forecasts expire after 24 hours from the posting date/time.
Issued
Fri, December 5th, 2014 - 7:00AM
Expires
Sat, December 6th, 2014 - 7:00AM
Forecaster
Graham Predeger
Avalanche risk The Bottom Line

The avalanche danger is LOW today both in the alpine and at tree line elevations.  Pockets of MODERATE danger can be found above treeline in steep complex terrain on leeward slopes  harboring fresh wind slabs up to 12 € in depth.   Any significant rain on snow at the mid-elevations today will also increase the avalanche danger.   A continued lack of snow cover below treeline results in No Rating at this lowest elevation band again today.

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Fri, December 5th, 2014
Alpine
Above 2,500'
Low (1)
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
Low (1)
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
  • Normal Caution
    Normal Caution
Normal Caution
Normal Caution means triggering an avalanche is unlikely but not impossible.
More info at Avalanche.org

Field observations and a lack of avalanche activity over the last several days have given us increased confidence in a strengthening snowpack.  With only modest amounts of new snow showing up precipitation hasn’t been a huge factor in increasing avalanche danger, allowing the snowpack to adjust accordingly, a couple inches at a time.  The most concerning interface in our snowpack at this point is the Nov. 18th rain crust (below ~3,500’).  This can be easily found through pole probing, hand pits or digging a full pit. Recent test results are showing signs of good strength and bonding to this layer.

Winds have been moderate at ridge top locations gusting up to the low 40’s from the north and east.  Caution will be warranted today on steep, leeward slopes at these higher elevations where a shallow wind slab (up to 12” deep) could be found.  Approach this terrain carefully; looking, listening and feeling for a wind slab prior to committing to a slope.

At mid elevations between 1,000 and 2,000 feet the surface snow is moist and somewhat gloppy.  With temperatures on the rise today, any rain we may see in this elevation band could spike the danger for small, wet loose sluffs.  In steep terrain these have the potential to entrain a significant amount of snow.  Fortunately, as of 6am this morning forecasted precipitation appears to be minimal for the eastern Turnagain arm zone.

                                A quick snapshot of depth and structure of our snowpack on the motorized side of Turnagain pass.

Weather
Fri, December 5th, 2014

Yesterday we experienced mostly cloudy skies with light to moderate winds from the northeast.   Snowfall rates were minimal with perhaps an inch stacking up throughout the day in the Turnagain pass area.   Rain was off and on for much of the day below about 500 feet.   Temperatures were hovering right around 32 degrees at the road level (1,000′)

Today appears to be a slight break in this general pattern of warm, moist air streaming into our region.   Though warming slightly from yesterday with temps expected to be around 36 degrees at 1,000′ the associated precipitation looks to be minimal with just a trace of rain/ snow forecasted today.   Any precip we do pick up will be all rain at sea level with that rain/ snow line hovering around 1,500 feet.   Winds will be predominantly from the east in the 10-25mph range at ridgetop locations.

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

  Temp Avg (F) Snow (in) Water (in) Snow Depth (in)
Center Ridge (1880′) 32    1 .1   20  
Summit Lake (1400′)  30  0 0   5  
Alyeska Mid (1700′)  31  1 0.1   19  

RIDGETOP 24-hour data (6am – 6am)

  Temp Avg (F) Wind Dir Wind Avg (mph) Wind Gust (mph)
Sunburst (3812′)  24 E    16  43
Seattle Ridge (2400′) 26   NNE   19   37  
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Riding Areas
Updated Thu, April 01st, 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
Glacier District
Johnson Pass
Open
No parking in turnaround at end of the road near the outhouse.
Placer River
Open
Please do not ride along Railroad tracks. Cross tracks at 90 degree angle and clear the right of way.
Skookum Drainage
Closed
The Skookum Valley is closed to snowmachines. This closure occurs annually on April 1 as per the CNF Forest Plan.
Turnagain Pass
Open
Twentymile
Open
Please do not ride along Railroad tracks. Cross tracks at 90 degree angle and clear the right of way.
Seward District
Carter Lake
Open
Lost Lake Trail
Open
Primrose Trail
Open
Resurrection Pass Trail
Closed
Closed for the 2020/21 winter season.
Snug Harbor
Open
South Fork Snow River Corridor
Open
Summit Lake
Open

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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.