Issues directly related to new storm snow will be at the forefront of our avalanche concerns today.
4” of snow overnight combined with another 3-4” today will help to build small slabs in the Alpine. These slabs will be thicker on leeward slopes and require terrain at least 35 degrees in steepness to trigger. Bonding of these slabs will be generally good as the current storm progression is going from warm to cold, laying down “right side up” slabs. The exception to this will be in isolated pockets on steep leeward slopes. It is in this terrain where wind slabs could become as thick as 10” by the end of the day. Avoid slabs in this terrain that sound hollow, are “punchy”, or produce shooting cracks.
Low volume sluffing will be possible in very steep terrain (over 40 degrees). These should be slow moving and easy to avoid. Sluffs will be dry above 3,000’ and gradually more damp as you lose elevation. Heightened awareness of sluffing will be important when traveling above or towards terrain traps such as gullies, cliffs and trees.
Weak layers buried 1-2’ deep seem to be dormant for the most part around Turnagain Pass. More uncertainty exists in the Girdwood Valley where we have less information about this layer. Yesterday my partner and I had a good look at the late January facet layer in steep Alpine terrain and found it to be unreactive. Testing over the past week has been consistent with what we found. New snow will not be enough of a load to awake this layer today. However, the possibility still exists to trigger slabs in the 2 foot range in isolated pockets in very steep (over 40 degrees) terrain. Focused assessment of this layer will be important if you find yourself venturing into steep Alpine terrain.
Warm air continued its chokehold on the region over the past 24 hours. Temperatures have begun to dip slightly in the early morning hours with freezing levels around 1,000′. Moisture associated with a large system moving in from the Southwest has brought light amounts of snow with the Center Ridge SNOTEL recording 4 €/.4 H20 and Alyeska Midway station with 3.7 €/.3 €H20. Ridgetop winds have been light to moderate out of the East.
Today we can expect to squeeze another 3-4 € of snow/.3 € of H20 out of this system. Ridegtop winds will be out of the Southeast at 15 to 20 mph. Rain/snow line will be around the 1,000′ level and slowly drop to 500′ by the evening hours.
The extended outlook is showing a gradual clearing and cooling trend. Precipitation will linger through the weekend with clear skies and daytime highs in the teens by the beginning of next week.
|Temp Avg (F)||Snow (in)||Water (in)||Snow Depth (in)|
|Center Ridge (1880′)||33||4||.4||44|
|Summit Lake (1400′)||36||trace||.1||7|
|Alyeska Mid (1700′)||34||4||.3||25|
|Temp Avg (F)||Wind Dir||Wind Avg (mph)||Wind Gust (mph)|
|Seattle Ridge (2400′)||27||n/a||16||32|
|01/20/21||Turnagain||Observation: Sunburst||Johnston-Bloom / Roberts Forecaster|
|01/19/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Cornbiscuit||Schauer/ Johnston-Bloom Forecaster|
|01/19/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Sunburst and Tincan||CNFAIC Staff|
|01/19/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Seattle Ridge||CNFAIC Staff|
|01/19/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan 2900′ SW aspect below Hippy Bowl.||Kris Marshall|
|01/18/21||Turnagain||Observation: Turnagain Pass Road Obs.||A Schauer Forecaster|
|01/16/21||Turnagain||Avalanche: Tincan Trees||A Schauer Forecaster|
|01/15/21||Turnagain||Observation: Sunburst||Schauer/ Wunnicke Forecaster|
|01/13/21||Turnagain||Observation: Tincan||Johnston-Bloom / Moderow Forecaster|
|01/13/21||Turnagain||Observation: Center Ridge Meadows||Alaska Avalanche School Rec Level 1 Roberts|
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: email@example.com
|Area||Status||Weather & Riding Conditions|
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.