18 Dec 2013

December 18, 2013

First avalanche fatality in Europe for the 2013/2014 season. Story below, picture above is the avalanche that involved 3 people, the victim had deployed his airbag. Lech, Austria

First light Tuesday morning December 17, 2013. Did not have a feeling of snow arriving.

Stratus cloud obscuring the valley with other clouds above.

A brief view of a ridge on Whistler Mountain from lower in the valley.

This morning's weather observations taken at 06:00 Hrs this December 18, 2013.

2180 meters    -8, winds were 15-30 KPH from the W
1860 meters    -8, winds were 10-20 KPH from the ESE
1550 meters    -7, winds were 15-25 KPH from the SSW
1650 meters    -5, 1 cm of new snow; Base 83 cm
1550 meters    -4, 1 cm of new snow; Base 58 cm
  660 meters   +1, Valley temp, .4 mm of precip yesterday

Today will bring a cold front through the zone with modified Arctic Air behind it. Unsettled conditions for Thursday morning before a strong warm front moves in bringing rising freezing levels into Friday and the weekend. Moist flow aloft will continue into early next week.  Guesstimates: 0-1 cm today, Possible flurries Thursday afternoon, 2-4 cm by Friday afternoon.

So far this winter it has either been warm or wet; cold and dry; all we need is for a system to move in and be cold and wet, perhaps Thursday night?!  The models have been totally off on precipitation amounts, it snowed in the Callaghan Valley yesterday but not here.

A warm front will move in Thursday afternoon, still cold air in the mountains, lets hope the mix is right and we get some snow out of it. Models are showing 3-5 by Friday afternoon.

The lesson of an avalanche: Liz Onufer

Is the middle class priced out of Skiing: CNBC

Triple Front Flip on Skis: Finland

Most unstable snow pack in a decade for the Alps: Pistehors.com

Avy experts target sidecountry safety programs: Colorado

Avalanche Fatality in Austria: Air Bag had been deployed

Fast moving high clouds with the occasional blue over  stratus cloud, later in the day.

At the end of the day Venus was visible through a brief hole.

Another day where the snow is so close but not helping our needs.

Looking unsettled for the next 2 days.

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