A lot of people are wondering if the earthquake shook loose any avalanches yesterday? Well, the answer is yes, but not anything too big or bad or ugly – that we know of. With ok visibility yesterday, it looked as though several chunks of cornice fell and some of these triggered small wind slab pockets below them.
Below is a photo from South facing Magnum Ridge:
Check out the many observations sent in to us yesterday – many of these were from the Alaska Avalanche School’s Level 2 course – thanks!
Avalanche concerns for today at the higher elevations (above 2,500′ where it is snowing) will focus on the new snow and wind. We have seen another 4-6″ of snow along with strong Easterly ridgetop winds overnight; this is on top of the 6″ from Saturday night. Today we are expecting an additional 2-6″ of snow with the moderate to strong winds remaining. Yesterday, wind slabs were stabilizing rapidly due to the warm temperatures and ‘sticky’ nature of the snow. We are expecting similar conditions for today. What to look for if visibility allows for travel above treeline:
If you find cracking or any signs pointing to sensitive wind slabs steer clear of that slope. These slabs are sitting on a generally stable snowpack and not expected to step down into any deeper layers in the pack.
**However, shallow zones such as the Summit Lake area and South of Turnagain Pass harbor a variety of old weak layers in the pack. These have been mostly unreactive but something to keep in mind if a new load is placed on them. See the Summit Lake Summary from Saturday for more on this.
Although cornices got a good shake early yesterday morning, give these a wide berth as they could still be prime to fall.
Glide cracks continue to open and widen, yet we did not see any new releases yesterday. See video below from Corn Biscuit ridge (we were almost sure this thing was going to avalanche while we were up there…). As we keep mentioning, limiting time, or avoiding time altogether, under these things is highly recommended!
Closeup of a portion of the Corn Biscuit glide crack.
Obscured skies along with pockets of blue holes covered the area yesterday. Winds were in the moderate range on the ridgetops, 15-20mph from the East. Intermittent light snowfall (rain below 1,000′) was seen with no accumulation.
Overnight, another warm and wet front has moved over us associated with a large low-pressure in the Gulf. Precipitation started falling around 9pm and as of 6am this morning, .5″ of rain has fallen below 1,500′ with 5″ of dense snow above treeline. The Easterly ridgetop winds have jumped as well, these are blowing in the 30’s mph with gusts in the 60’s. Temperatures are in the mid 30’s at 1,000′ and the mid 20’s F at 4,000′.
Today we should see cloudy skies with continued snowfall adding 2-6″ of dense snow above 2,000′ and ~.25-.5″ of rain below 1,800′. Ridgetop winds are slated to remain in the 20-30mph range from the East with stronger gusts and temperatures will stay warm…(mid 30’s F at 1,000′ and mid 20’s F on the ridgetops). Keep in mind with this weather pattern it will be possible to see more snowfall than predicted.
Tuesday, a break between systems will bring intermittent snow showers with some possible sunny breaks. Stay tuned.
|Temp Avg (F)||Snow (in)||Water (in)||Snow Depth (in)|
|Center Ridge (1880′)||32||3||0.5||90|
|Summit Lake (1400′)||35||1||0.1||27|
|Alyeska Mid (1700′)||33||2||.6||74|
|Temp Avg (F)||Wind Dir||Wind Avg (mph)||Wind Gust (mph)|
|Seattle Ridge (2400′)||27||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|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.