The avalanche hazard is Considerable at all elevations.  A strong storm will test the strength of our snowpack 1/18.  Stay out of the way of avalanche terrain while this test is in progress. Rain line is forecasted to rise up to 2,000' with up to 2 feet of snow falling above that.  Human triggered avalanches 1-4 feet deep will be likely and natural avalanches will be possible.  Rain below 2000' will saturate snow surfaces and create the potential for wet loose avalanches.   Persistent weak layers that exist north of Thompson Pass may come alive today and produce natural avalanches up to 4 feet deep. For more information click the (+full forecast) button below. Help to improve your community avalanche forecast!  Visit our observation page to leave a comment or you can email me directly at [email protected]
The avalanche hazard is Considerable at all elevations.  A strong storm will test the strength of our snowpack 1/18.  Stay out of the way of avalanche terrain while this test is in progress. Rain line is forecasted to rise up to 2,000' with up to 2 feet of snow falling above that.  Human triggered avalanches 1-4 feet deep will be likely and natural avalanches will be possible.  Rain below 2000' will saturate snow surfaces and create the potential for wet loose avalanches.   Persistent weak layers that exist north of Thompson Pass may come alive today and produce natural avalanches up to 4 feet deep. For more information click the (+full forecast) button below. Help to improve your community avalanche forecast!  Visit our observation page to leave a comment or you can email me directly at [email protected]
The avalanche hazard is Considerable at all elevations.  A strong storm will test the strength of our snowpack 1/18.  Stay out of the way of avalanche terrain while this test is in progress. Rain line is forecasted to rise up to 2,000' with up to 2 feet of snow falling above that.  Human triggered avalanches 1-4 feet deep will be likely and natural avalanches will be possible.  Rain below 2000' will saturate snow surfaces and create the potential for wet loose avalanches.   Persistent weak layers that exist north of Thompson Pass may come alive today and produce natural avalanches up to 4 feet deep. For more information click the (+full forecast) button below. Help to improve your community avalanche forecast!  Visit our observation page to leave a comment or you can email me directly at [email protected]
The avalanche hazard is Considerable at all elevations.  A strong storm will test the strength of our snowpack 1/18.  Stay out of the way of avalanche terrain while this test is in progress. Rain line is forecasted to rise up to 2,000' with up to 2 feet of snow falling above that.  Human triggered avalanches 1-4 feet deep will be likely and natural avalanches will be possible.  Rain below 2000' will saturate snow surfaces and create the potential for wet loose avalanches.   Persistent weak layers that exist north of Thompson Pass may come alive today and produce natural avalanches up to 4 feet deep. For more information click the (+full forecast) button below. Help to improve your community avalanche forecast!  Visit our observation page to leave a comment or you can email me directly at [email protected]
MaritimeIntermountainContinental
Forecast as of 01/18/2021 at 08:00 and expires on 01/19/2021

Current Advisory Level

Considerable

Above 3,000ftConsiderable

1,500 to 3,000ftConsiderable

Below 1,500ftConsiderable

+ FULL FORECAST
Forecast as of 01/18/2021 at 08:00 and expires on 01/19/2021

Current Advisory Level

Considerable

Above 4,000ftConsiderable

2,000 to 4,000ftConsiderable

Below 2,000ftConsiderable

+ FULL FORECAST
Forecast as of 01/18/2021 at 08:00 and expires on 01/19/2021

Current Advisory Level

Considerable

Above 4,000ftConsiderable

2,000 to 4,000ftConsiderable

Below 2,000ftConsiderable

+ FULL FORECAST
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Observations

Tell us what you're seeing out there.

Forecast Center Observation

Date2021-01-18
LocationValdez
ObserverDan van
AvalancheN

General Observations

Natural avalanches likely, human triggered very likely!  Any bets going on when the pass gets shut down?  

 
Date2021-01-16
LocationValdez
Observerksobek
AvalancheN

General Observations

Great quality, but much less quantity of snow along the Richardson highway north of 50 mile, compared to 46 mile and south. More wind blown snow in the alpine as well. Questionable stability in the northern Chugach alpine due to wind effect and intercontinental snow pack. No avalanches spotted. 

 
Date2021-01-16
LocationValdez
ObserverAidan Shafland
AvalancheN

General Observations

Touring up towards Lower Dimond with the intention of digging some pits looking for burried surface hoar. Dug pit at ~2400ft, NW aspect slope with an angle of 33° found no shearing or propagation in our ECT, however when loaded with a skier above the pit, the EC failed at a depth of ~45cm, and…

 

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Valdez Avalanche Center

Valdez Avalanche Center

Support the education and sharing of avalanche information for mountains surrounding the Port of Valdez to Milepost 65 on the Richardson Highway. Our membership keeps the mission going. Join as a Valdez Avalanche Center member today, or donate directly.

The Valdez Avalanche Center has been providing safety information in the Chugach Mountains surrounding Valdez since 2006. It began as a radio interview discussing snow and avalanche conditions. Locals asked for information they could make plans with. Forecasts are currently issued Friday through Sunday with special alerts for significant weather or avalanche events. Information contained in the forecasts is intended to be used as a tool in conjunction with your personal backcountry hazard evaluation.

Public observations are encouraged and aid the accuracy of the avalanche forecasts in our data-sparse region.

Valdez Avalanche Forecasters

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Other:

 


2019/2020 Staff & Volunteers

 

Forecaster:  Gareth Brown

 Gareth grew up backcountry skiing in Colorado.  He moved to Valdez, AK in 2010 and currently resides in Serendipity, AK, on the north side of Thompson Pass.  Gareth has spent the last 10 seasons exploring the Chugach by splitboard.  He completed his Pro 2 avalanche certification last year in Girdwood with AAI.

[email protected]    907-255-7690

kyle_sobek

Sarah Carter: Forecaster/Instructor/Valdez Avalanche Center Director5

[email protected]

Sarah loves SNOW! She forecasts for VAC. She also teaches avalanche classes with the Alaska Avalanche Information Center, Prince William Sound College, Backcountry Babes, and UAA.

Kyle Sobek: Instructor/Forecaster

Kyle rides every moment he gets. Kyle is now a Kenny Lake resident and calls Alaska home. He seeks out every opportunity to learn about snow and mountain riding. Kyle instructs avalanche courses and forecasts part-time for Valdez Avalanche Center.

Sean Wisner: Rescue Coordinator

Ben Stolen: Observer

Gareth Brown: Observer

Josh McDonald: Observer


Dr. John Cullen, M.D.: Advisory Board Member and Medical Advisor

Will Stark: Advisory Board Member

Will grew up in Little Tutka Bay, across Kachemak Bay from Homer and attended college at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.  After obtaining his bachelors degree he entered the management training program with First National Bank Alaska.  In 1997, the bank offered him a job opportunity in Valdez; over the last 20 years, the bank and Valdez have treated him well and he is proud to be associated with both.  Valdez has provided his wife, Erin, and Will an exceptional place to raise their two children, Liam and Noah.  In Valdez they have made great friends and find the town has the perfect mix of ocean and mountains with unparalleled access to both.  Will says he is honored and humbled to provide what help he can to the Valdez Avalanche Center.

Rich Loftin: Advisory Board Member

Erica Shirk: Advisory Board Member

DB Palmer: Advisory Board Member

Interns:

2016 Josh Hege & Bobby Lieberman
2015-2016 Kyle Sobek
2014 Kevin Salys
2014 Monica Morin
2013 Dusty Reed
2012 Katreen Wikstroem
2011 Sam Benoit
2010-2012 Ethan Davis
2009 Jordan Pond
2009 Brad Deringer
2008 Elise Leahy


Sponsors

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Thanks to all our members and community supporters!


Valdez Gallery

Tailgate Alaska at Thompson Pass

hybrid users are common in Valdez

Powder!

 

Surface Hoar

 

Thompson Pass Terrain