Avalanche Advisory

---------- Terrace & Coastal Areas ----------
  Saturday Sunday Monday
Alpine 2 - MODERATE 2 - MODERATE 2 - MODERATE
Treeline 2 - MODERATE 3 - CONSIDERABLE 3 - CONSIDERABLE
Below Treeline 2 - MODERATE 3 - CONSIDERABLE 3 - CONSIDERABLE
---------- Smithers & Interior Sections ----------
  Saturday Sunday Monday
Alpine 3 - CONSIDERABLE 2 - MODERATE 2 - MODERATE
Treeline 2 - MODERATE 3 - CONSIDERABLE 3 - CONSIDERABLE
Below Treeline 2 - MODERATE 3 - CONSIDERABLE 3 - CONSIDERABLE
 
Confidence: Fair: Complex snowpack with significant variations between areas, limited field data, disagreement amongst weather forecasts.
Primary Concerns:
  • Wind Slab:
    Snow and wind have loaded N'ly and E'ly slopes so watch for pockets of
    wind slabs on the lee side of ridges and similar terrain features. It
    also means cross loaded slopes and gulleys.
  • Solar Radiation: & Warm Temperatures:
    will weaken surface snow, especially Sunday & Monday. Watch for a
    loose wet avalanche cycle from solar aspects. If overnight temperatures
    remain above freezing, these could become larger wet slab avalanches by
    Monday.

Special Message:   Here's a photo analysis from a few recent incidents (click here).
Although they aren't from deep coastal snowpack areas, they are
instructive. There's lots of similar terrain in the NW and this winter
you lack the typical strong coastal snowpack.

Travel Advisory:  
Issued: Fri, Apr 3 Next Scheduled Update: Mon, Apr 6

On
shady slopes, or higher elevations where a cool winter snowpack
remains, watch for wind effect: that means recently formed pillows or
drifts of deeper "slabby" snow on steep slopes. This is the type of
"soft slab" problem where testing small slopes with minimal
consequences can help you assess what's going on and where the slabs
are found - whumpfing, shooting cracks, and small slides are what
you're looking for.

Southerly
facing slopes are where the trouble's gonna be brewing the next few
days so caution around SE slopes in the morning, southerly slopes
around noon, and then both S and W slopes in the afternoon.  
Consider
not being on OR below warming and melting terrain. This includes small
low elevation slopes with terrain traps. I'm thinking road cuts,
gulleys above creeks, and similar terrain traps where even a small
blooper could turn ugly. I
also wouldn't want to spend much time under cornices this weekend.
Cooler, shady aspects without wind affected slabby snow is your best
bet.

Avalanche Activity:  
Issued: Fri, Apr 3 Next Scheduled Update: Mon, Apr 6

Recent avalanches reported from northern areas were older cornice
failures and natural slabs to size 2.5. Otherwise either no new
avalanches were reported, or small controlled slabs (size 1) and
sluffs.

Snowpack:  
Issued: Fri, Apr 3 Next Scheduled Update: Mon, Apr 6

There's around 20cm of recent snow around Terrace, 10 cm near Smithers,
and around 35 near Ningunsaw. S'ly and W'ly winds created slabs on the
downwind side of ridges. This snow rests on crusts (solar aspects) and
possibly surface hoar. Southerly aspects are turning moist up to 1600 m
near Terrace and only 800 m up near Ningunsaw. 
There are several PWLs buried deeper in the snowpack being monitored by pros. The uppermost (consisting of surface hoar, facets and/or a crust) is approximately 40 cm deep in the inland section and 70-140 cm deep in the coastal part of the region.


View Avalanche Observation Summary

(NEW!)

Weather:  
Issued: Fri, Apr 3 Next Scheduled Update: Mon, Apr 6

Saturday:
Moderate precipitation near Stewart, likely only a couple of cms in the
mountains near Terrace, dry near Smithers. Strong southerly winds.
Warmer than Friday with freezing line near 1000m.
Sunday: dry,
sunny, continued but weaker southerly winds. Likely still warmer with
freezing line between 1100 and 1600 metres, depending on which forecast
you believe.

Monday: Diminishing wind, still dry, sunny and warmer still.


Issued by: ilya storm

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