28 Nov 2015

November 28, 2015

    Size 1 wet snow avalanche over Lakeside Traverse from Thursday, likely later in the day.

    Man made snow storm Whistler Village, Friday November 27, 2015.

    Lower Mountain guns enjoying the -9 temperature early in the morning.

   Glide crack in Burnt Stew getting bigger.

    Found evidence of buried surface hoar at 2000 meters N aspect, 30 cm above ground on crust.

    100 cm column with a 1.5 cm crust 30 cm from the ground.

    Exposed brittle crust with wind blown snow.

    Skin track up body bag Bowl.

Weather Observations for November 28, 2015: taken at 06:00 Hours.

2240 meters      +3, Winds were 10-12 KPH SE   --Horstman Hut Station
2180 meters      +5, Winds were 10-15 KPH NE  --Whistler Peak
1860 meters      +6, Winds were 0-5 KPH SSE  --Rendevous
1835 meters      +4, Winds were 0-5 KPH SSW  --Roundhouse
1650 meters      +2, 0 cm of new, 79 cm Base, Relative Humidity 23%  --Pig Alley
1550 meters      +4, ? cm of new, 49 cm Base  --Catskinner 
  660 meters       -9, Valley Temp, Max Temp Yesterday was +1.

    As of 07:00 Hours we have clear skies and unlimited visibility.

For the forecast, ground hog day, although the high pressure will begin to weaken Sunday and migrate Eastward we are still in a dry Northeast flow aloft. Should see a change Monday afternoon (some clouds) as a series of Pacific frontal systems move onshore Tuesday in a Southwest flow aloft. The freezing level will slowly descend over the next couple of days reaching 1000 meters by Monday night with unsettled conditions. There is a chance of some snow showers Monday evening into Tuesday afternoon before the first frontal band truly arrives Tuesday evening. A break with unsettled weather for Wednesday then another front for Thursday. Freezing levels will fluctuate from 1000-1500 meters in this time period. Still to early to guesstimate but Thursday is looking like a good storm day with 20-30cm in the alpine by Friday morning.

    Ridge will be pushed Eastward Monday.

    High pressure with warm temperatures for today.

    Low pressure will be knocking at our door by Monday evening. Light winds for today.

    First frontal wave for Tuesday, will be the best chance of snow to the valley.


Update on Ophir Brothers surviving massive avalanche: TellurideDaily Planet

Be aware in the Backcountry: Carolyn Grant

One Backcountry skier missing in Hatcher Pass: Alaska

Avalanche destruction potential cannot be ignored-Coroner: Australia

Skiers and hunters warned of avalanche danger: Montana

    Thanks to Mike and Christy for the profile below.

    Folks playing in lower Body Bag.

    Easy access out of the backcountry from lower Body Bag.

    Table Top Mountain and a very shiny variably distributed wind exposed brittle crust.

                 Event tonight, come check it out!!

27 Nov 2015

November 27, 2015

    Photo of Fatwah Couloir, 2 brothers survive 2 avalanches in CO, story below.      Casey Cane Pic

    Full Moon setting Thursday November 26, 2015.

    Thanks to Simon Thomson for these images and observations from Wednesday. Simon Pic

Quick tour around the Blackcomb backcountry Nov 25Th  with Brent Phillips and Nick Velan.  Variable snow distribution on Spearhead Gl. from 50cm to 150cm snow depth.  Difficult travel with lots of sags and open crevasses.  Good mid boot top snow on the glacier.  Skiing down Husume was marginal with 10cm breakable stiff slab overlaying loose snow.  Lots of old fracture lines visible from previous cycle up to size 2.5.  Most scrubbing down to glacial ice.  One quick pit near top of East Col, 80cm HS, showed CTM sudden results in facets below a crust 60cm down.  It’s still early! Simon

    Pit on East Col near Dean's Adieu.                                                                                                  Simon Thomson Pic

    Back side of Husume and Carona                                                                    Simon Thomson Pic

    Lots of folks heading out for some exercise.

    Happy Park People!!

    Nasty High pressure.

    A serious blocking pattern!!

    Sunset Thursday.

Weather Observations for November 27, 2015: taken at 06:00 Hours.

2240 meters      +2, Winds were 10-20 KPH NNE   --Horstman Hut Station
2180 meters        0, Winds were 20-30 KPH SSW  --Whistler Peak
1860 meters      +3, Winds were 10-20 KPH NW  --Rendevous
1835 meters      +2, Winds were 5-15 KPH S  --Roundhouse
1650 meters      +1, 0 cm of new, 80 cm Base, Relative Humidity 22%  --Pig Alley
1550 meters      +2, 0 cm of new, 50 cm Base  --Catskinner 
  660 meters       -9, Valley Temp, Max Temp Yesterday was +0.2.

    As of 07:00 Hours we have clear skies and unlimited visibility.

For the forecast, the strong blocking upper level high will continue giving us dry and stable weather into the weekend. North to Northeast flow will shift to offshore flow with a significant temperature
inversion for the next two days. Freezing level will reach above 3000 meters for Friday and Saturday, slowly descending to around 1000 meters by Monday evening.  Long range models are now looking like the next frontal system will move onshore for Tuesday/Wednesday but more on that as we get closer.  Enjoy the nice weather.

    RRR hanging into the weekend.

    High pressure will begin to move Eastward on Sunday/Monday.

    Change is expected Tuesday into Wednesday. Hopefully for all of next week.


How to build a Quinzhee Shelter: Jim Baird

Mt Cook skier captures glacier collapse: Ryan Taylor

Sony--Best ski line of 2015: James Heim


Brothers survive "massive" avalanche near Telluride: Colorado

Another article on the above story: Telluride, CO

Fetch & Deposition: CSAC

Climate Change means Rocky Patches for Canadian Skiers, Snowboarders: HuffingtonPost

Recent snows prompt avalanche avoidance advice: Montana

    First time I have ever seen a boot pack up OverBite.

    Some good looking snow in Smoked Salmon.

    Blackcomb Bowl.

    Alpin Glow Thursday evening.

26 Nov 2015

November 26, 2015

    Recent Na avalanche on Brandywine South Aspect above Grizzly Lake.   James McSkimming Pic

    Snowmaking to the village on Whistler Mountain. Early Wednesday morning.

    Terrain Park is in awesome shape.

    Gun Pow Turns!!

    Moving guns to where they are needed. Blackcomb Wednesday, November 25, 2015.

    Ridge dominating the weather pattern.

    Blackcomb is opening today. Image from just after sunset Wednesday evening.

Weather Observations for November 26, 2015: taken at 06:00 Hours.

2240 meters      -5, Winds were 30-45 KPH NNE  --Horstman Hut Station
2180 meters      -5, Winds were 40-60 KPH SSW  --Whistler Peak
1860 meters      -2, Winds were 30-45 KPH NW  --Rendevous
1835 meters      -3, Winds were 10-20 KPH NNE  --Roundhouse
1650 meters      -2, 0 cm of new, 80 cm Base, Relative Humidity 48%  --Pig Alley
1550 meters       0, 0 cm of new, ? cm Base  --Catskinner 
  660 meters      -8, Valley Temp, Max Temp Yesterday was +0.2.

Freezing level briefly reached 1600 meters last night.

   As of 06:30 Hours we have clear skies and unlimited visibility under the full moon.

For the forecast, high pressure will continue to build in the area until Monday. We can expect a cool NE flow aloft for the next few days. Inverted temperatures will bring the freezing level up to 2300 meters today, even higher on Saturday, then will slowly come back down to 1400 meters by Monday. Still looking like a weak front will begin to push onshore by Monday evening in a Southerly flow aloft. Models are in disagreement to when the moisture will arrive. At this time the GFS and ECMWF  still maintain ridging where as the NAM has a system onshore by Sunday.  Minimum valley temperatures will fluctuate from -8 to +1 in the next few days.

    High pressure continues to build.

    Warmer temperatures in the alpine today.

    High getting pinched on Saturday.

    Classic Omega Block: Definition


Avalanche buries road under 2.5 meters of snow, backcountry skier missing: Hatcher Pass, AK

Analysis of long term weather, snow, and avalanche data at Glacier National Park: Science Direct

The best avalanche airbag pack review: OutDoorGearLab

New camp teaches girls skiing basics in avalanche territory: Montana

                 Some good info Saturday night.

    Wind has removed snow down to the crust in some areas.

    Ipsoot Wednesday afternoon.

                     Thanks to John for this profile from Ipsoot. CTV Sc cutting block x2

    Snow making going hard.

    Sun setting Wednesday afternoon.