Urban Avalanche Advisory
Current Advisory as of
January 21, 2019
Expires 7:00 AM the following morning.
Issued By Tom Mattice
Primary Avalanche Problem
We have seen 12-20cm of new snow around the region in the last 36 hours with winds from 10-20 gusting to 25mph out of SE (130).
This snow came to rest on a hard icy bed surface. Bonding may be in question a while longer.
Look to see shallow windslabs building on NW slopes. These may be fairly easy to trigger. Probably not huge in nature yet on steep slopes may travel faster than average with low density snow on a hard bed surface.Learn more about Wind Slab.
Secondary Avalanche Problem
The rain and warming were not enough to heal some of the deeper weak layers we have present in the snowpack.
Yesterdays snowpit tests still yielded low test scores on these deeper weak layers.
Its hard to always trust snowpit results as we cut the back taking away the snowpack strength to perform our tests as we isolate the weak layers. But the test did snow very clear planar shears at low scores.
I think it will take a bit more loading to where these deeper weak layers come into question. Loading rates have been low to moderate and are forecast to stay that way.
The snowpack may continue to settle and adjust to this loading rate but keep an eye on these deeper weak layers. A slide on them is sure to be more of a hard slab with much greater consequences.
The temperature regime in the snowpack was consistent showing no great temperature gradient. Hopefully these weak layers will continue to heal and build strength.Learn more about Persistent Slab.
Today’s Avalanche Tip
Backcountry Basics: Recognizing Avalanche Terrain
By Dale Atkins
“We didn’t think we were in an avalanche path.”
These were the sorrow-filled words told to me by a couple whose friend was buried and killed in very small Colorado avalanche back in 2000. The problem of not recognizing avalanche terrain is not new. Avalanche survivors have likely uttered similar words for centuries, and even today the message is still heard after some accidents.
Avalanche terrain can be a broad and complicated topic. But here, I’ll introduce some ideas and key points about avalanche terrain that you may not have heard before. I hope this will encourage you to seek out information. Recognizing avalanche terrain is key to staying alive and having fun in the backcountry. You can’t control the weather or the snow conditions but you can control when you go—and where.
To read the full article go to: https://www.msrgear.com/blog/backcountry-basics-recognizing-assessing-avalanche-terrain/
Be safe out there and have a great day.