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Current Conditions

Last Updated: Wednesday, December 17th, 2014 by Erik Stevens (Disclaimer | About This Page)
Expires 11pm on December 17th, 2014
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Zones (see map):
Avalanche Problem(s)
Chilkat Pass

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This Season:
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Recent Weather Summary (Chart):

December 7th-11th brought three storms with snow levels around treeline. 2-4 feet of snow fell in the alpine. Winds were variable.

More storms from the 13th-17th brought 1-3ft of additional snowfall above 2000ft. 2.5" of precip. fell in the valleys during this time, with 14" of snow at customs.

Today will be a break in the action as the clouds should clear up and winds turn northerly. Cooler temperatures and some clouds arrive Thursday, with snow starting to fall by evening. Light to moderate accumulations are likely into Friday, with snow falling at sea level. A stronger storm is likely for Saturday, and continued north winds should keep things snowy.

Lutak Zone (see map)

Danger: No Rating See Scale
Observations are lacking from this zone, and snow levels have generally been 1000ft higher here than in the more interior zones. You may encounter a range of potential wind slabs and weak layers in the alpine.

Always wear a beacon, shovel, and probe, and know how to use them.

Transitional Zone (see map)

Danger: Moderate See Scale
The main concern right now is the settling storm snow from the last several days. Non-scoured areas at treeline and higher likely have 1-3ft of settled recent snow. Any soft slabs that formed during the storm still need more time to bond. Be wary of slopes steeper than 30-degrees where skier triggered slides are still quite possible, especially in wind loaded areas.

This week's consistent snowfall above treeline compressed last week's storm snow layers. But on some slopes there will be lingering weakness in those deeper layers, possibly with lingering patches of buried surface hoar 60-90cm down. If you were to trigger any of these deeper wind slabs, they can propagate widely. The consequences would be high. Keep this in mind.

A few close calls have occurred over the last few weeks with skier-triggered avalanches. The depths and weak layers have varied. In areas of shallow snowpack, some slides ran to the ground on deep facets. In thicker areas, slides are running within the recent storm layers. Be careful out there and give our recent heavy snowfall more time to settle.

Always wear a beacon, shovel, and probe, and know how to use them.

Chilkat Pass Zone (see map)

Danger: Moderate See Scale
See above for more information.

Disclaimer: Use the data on this website at your own discretion as part of a thorough evaluation of the avalanche hazard in the field. Remember that conditions vary greatly from place to place and hour to hour, so evaluate the snow you find locally, and compare it to what you read on this website. We are not responsible for how you use the information contained on this site, and assume no liability for its use. Remember, information is no substitute for experience. Educate yourself in avalanche safety. The information on this website is not sufficient for completely safe backcountry decision making. Use at your own risk.

All content copyright © Alaska Avalanche Information Center, 2014

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