Issued: Mon, Nov 13, 2017 at 8AM

Expires: Fri, Nov 17, 2017

We will be providing an AIARE Avalanche Level 1 Class this winter in Haines, February 23-25, 2018

More info and signup here.

Above 2,500ft None

1,500 to 2,500ft None

Below 1,500ft None

Degrees of Avalanche Danger ?

1. Low
2. Moderate
3. Considerable
4. High
5. Extreme

Avalanche Danger Rose ?

Avalanche Problems ?

Problem Details

Avalanche season is here. We’ve already had a significant skier-triggered avalanche reported (see below). Early season can be sketchy: several avalanche fatalities have occurred this time of year.

We have an extreme lack of snow so far this season. Total precipitation since October 1st is at 38% of normal. Snow depths are around 10cm at 3,500ft, ranging up to 100cm in wind loaded areas above 5,000ft.  Variability is high due to persistent dry, windy conditions.

Temperatures above treeline are around 0 – 5°F. This has caused faceting of the thin snowpack above treeline. These 2-3mm facets are setting up a weak base to hold up future heavy snows. Keep this in mind as November progresses and snow depths increase.

For now, keep your guard up, and feel around for slabby, layered snow which may be unstable. Probe and dig around. If you find cohesive slabs sitting above softer, weak layers, you have everything you need for an avalanche. Remember that conditions are quite variable right now, and stability will vary from slope to slope. Start the season with fresh batteries in your beacon, and practice with your beacon, shovel, and probe.

If you get out on the snow, send in your observations! We will start regular forecasting when enough obs start coming in.

Recent Avalanche Activity

SS-AR-D2-R3-S | A snowboarder-triggered D2, Nadahini-area, 10-28-2017

October 28th: First rider-triggered slide reported from the peak north of Nadahini (“Sunny Bunny”). D2 soft slab ran in storm snow from Oct 26-27. Nobody caught or injured. [ SS-AR-D2-R3-S ] South aspect @ 6,200ft.

Small – Moderate natural avalanche activity is occurring during/after storms. So far it has been mostly loose-snow slides, with a few slab avalanches as well.

Recent Weather

Alpine temperatures have been hovering around  -15°C (+5°F) for the last several days. North winds have been moderate with occasional blowing snow. This will continue for the next week at least. There are hints of a pattern change with snowy conditions possibly coming in by the weekend. Hope for the best.

 Snow Depth [in] Last 24-hr Snow/SWE [in] Last 3-days Snow/SWE [in]  Today’s Freezing Level [ft]  Today’s Winds Next 24-hr Snow/SWE
Mount Ripinsky @ treeline

4

0 / 0.00 5″ / 0.25 0  strong, N  0″ / 0.00 *
Flower Mountain @ treeline

 8

 0 / 0.00  3″ / 0.15 0 strong, NW  0″ / 0.00 *
Chilkat Pass @ 3,500ft
 4 0 / 0.00 * 1″ / 0.05 * 0 strong, NW  0″ / 0.00 *

( *star means meteorological estimate )

October 5th: 4-10″ of snow fell above 4,500ft.

October 13-15th: 6-12″ of snow fell above 2,500ft in the Lutak and Transitional zones, less snow fell in the Pass zone.

October 18-24th: 2-6″ of snow fell above 2,000ft

October 26th-27th: A warm tropical system brought heavy snow above 3000ft, transitioning to heavy rain as snow levels peaked near 6000ft before dropping again. There was a net gain of around 30cm of new snow above 5000ft.

Additional Info & Media

Posted in Chilkat Pass Forecasts.
Erik Stevens

Forecaster: Erik Stevens