Increased winds Thursday may add to recently formed wind slabs that can still be triggered by people in steep leeward areas in the alpine. Cornices have grown very large in recent weeks, so watch your exposure to them carefully.
Several large avalanches failing naturally on the basal facet/depth hoar have been observed in the past week. These are hard to predict, but are most likely in areas with a thin snowpack (~150cm) where the basal facets and depth hoar are prominent.
Deep persistent slabs are best managed by:
Cornices are best managed by:
A temperature inversion (warmer in the alpine, colder in the valley) will start to break down Thursday bringing with it increased winds which will be in the strong range (up to 80kmh) in the alpine. Temperatures will be in the -10C range but likely colder in the Louise region in the AM. No snow is forecast in the next 24 hours.
Continued settlement and cool temperatures are slowly stabilizing the recently formed windslabs, which could still be triggered in steep, loaded areas in the alpine. Some sun crust formation on steep S and SW facing terrain. Weak, facetted snow near the base of the snowpack persists in much of the range, producing isolated but large avalanches.
No new avalanches today. There was a report yesterday of a size 2.5 wind slab that was triggered by ski tourers on the scramblers route of Cascade Mountain. It was on a steep SW slope in the alpine with no involvement.