Alpine : Moderate
Travel Advisory : Spring-like conditions are going to persist through the weekend. Ten centimetres of low density snow fell with the most recent storm, depositing up to 30cm deep soft slabs into lee alpine terrain. Solar-triggered wet avalanche activity on east, south and west aspects is likely this week. Variably hard icey crusts in the mornings will give way to loose wet snow by midday. Cornices have been very fragile with the daily freeze-thaw cycle and should be treated with a lot of respect.
Avalanche Activity : Explosive and ski testing on Monday produced several size one soft slab avalanches releasing high in lee alpine start zones. Solar warming triggered a widespread loose wet avalanche cycle from sun-exposed terrain on Tuesday. Several large cornice noses were released with explosives testing on Tuesday while large natural cornice failures were reported from the backcountry.
Snowpack: Strong winds accompanied the last two storms leaving exposed alpine areas scoured while 30cm of low density snow was loaded into lee and cross loaded areas. On solar exposed slopes there are melt-freeze crusts on the surface and buried in the upper snow pack. In some spots these buried crusts are hard ice layers. The most recent avalanche activity on the Dec. 5 th facet/crust weakness was triggered by a large cornice release on Jan. 21.
Weather : Clear skies with mild daytime temperatures and nighttime cooling should last into Friday when a weak weather system will bring some cloud and flurries to our area. Friday night's low pressure system should start to clear by Saturday morning. A more significant system is forecast for Monday.