The avalanche danger
will rise with the precipitation and rising freezing levels forecast for late
Thursday or Friday.
: Last weekend’s monsoon event brought about 80-90mm of precipitation
and consistently strong winds from the SE and E. The precipitation fell totally
as snow above about 1,900 metres, but below this elevation the post storm
cooling produced a variable surface crust that is now overlain by about 30 cm
of low density snow. Above the rain line, the variable hard windslab from the
weekend is now covered by the wind affected lower density snow. If you are at
treeline or below, watch for frozen avalanche debris that may still not be well
covered. In the high alpine, the strong winds have created many new features.
Take care when following the ridgelines, as cornices have grown.
: Significant natural activity to size 2.5 took
place during the weekend storm. All elevations produced avalanches — moist
sluffs below the rainline and slabs in the higher wind loaded alpine
Further explosive testing
Monday resulted in some hard windslabs to size 2 with crown lines maxing out at
100cm. Avalanche control carried out on Wednesday produced numerous pockets of
soft slab that were running within or below the lower density cold snow that
fell Tuesday and Tuesday night. Cornices were also moving easily.
In the high alpine terrain, Tuesday’s snow combined with prolonged strong winds
from the S and SW have created pockets of soft slab that are sitting on the
older stiff windslab. At treeline and below, the weekend crust can still be
felt in spite of the 30 cm of overlying storm snow. Steep solar aspects are
being affected by the sun today, and the low density snow is thickening. The
forecast warmer storms for the weekend can be expected to create an upside down
slab and the avalanche danger will rise.
The forecast is calling for a series of storms beginning Friday that
will bring periods of precipitation and rising freezing levels.
Conditions may vary and can change rapidly. Check for the most current conditions before heading out into the backcountry. Daily updates for the areas adjacent to Whistler/Blackcomb are available at 604-938-7676, or surf to www.whistler-blackcomb.com/weather where there is also a link to the CAA public avalanche bulletin, or call 1-800-667-1105.