April 24 th , 2002
A melt-freeze cycle has left us with a fairly solid surface crust on all but North aspects in the high alpine where the surface layers of snow were relatively unaffected by this process and are still quite winter-like. When the snow goes through these melt-freeze cycles, the integrity of the surface crust is the key to the stability of the snowpack. Once the crust begins to break down with exposure to the sun or with warming, the avalanche danger will begin to increase.
Skiing in some areas in the backcountry right now is akin to skiing on stucco. You might want to let things soften up a bit before your next outing.
The backcountry avalanche danger is currently rated as LOW but may increase with exposure to the sun and warm temperatures.
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 938-7676, or atwww.whistler-blackcomb.com/weather where there is also a link to the CAA public avalanche bulletin, or call 1-800-667-1105
The long-range weather forecast is calling for a weak disturbance to enter our region on Friday. A ridge of high pressure is expected to begin to rebuild on Saturday bringing a gradual return to fair weather conditions.