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Backcountry Advisory

As of Wednesday, Feb. 23


Alpine: LOW

Treeline: LOW

Below Treeline: LOW

Travel Advisory: Surface conditions vary from sun affected crusts on solar exposed slopes to loose facetted snow in sheltered terrain and some pockets of windslab. You may also encounter patches of exposed crust from the January rain as well as summer ice. Many areas above 2,000 mtres are surprisingly well covered while some lines remain virtually unskiable. Be very cautious below 2,000 metres as the good snow cover ends at this elevation in many areas.

Avalanche Activity: We have had only one reported skier-triggered windslab over the past several days. Steep sheltered start zones will likely see some light density loose surface sluffing with skier or boarder traffic. The sun may become a factor in the afternoon hours on sun-exposed slopes. As temperatures rise and the surface layers of snow moisten moist sluffing may begin to occur in steep rocky areas. Cornices should be given wide berth with the temperature swings expected in the alpine.

Snowpack: Facetted weak snow over the 30 to 50 cm ice crust left behind after the January rain is what we will be watching when it snows again. There are also areas of wind slab, layers of surface hoar around tree line, and the variable sun crusts on solar exposed slopes to keep track of.

Weather: The high pressure is going to dominate in our area for the next few days with clear skies and warm daytime temperatures. This ridge is expected to weaken by the weekend, which is expected to result in increasing cloud and wind.

Remember that there are still many exposed early season hazards. Should you choose to leave our area boundaries plan your route carefully. A wrong turn could result in a bush whack to the valley on very little snow! Take it easy and watch for winch cats and snowmobile traffic should you re-enter the ski area

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