19 Dec 2014

December 19, 2014

    Light snow at 07:30 Hours Dec 18, 2014

    Short lived ridging yesterday morning.

    With the new snow covering hazards its a good time to be careful if exploring.

    A break in the approaching front near dusk.

Weather observations for December 19, 2014, taken at 06:00 Hours this Am.

2240 meters      -7, Winds were 45-65 KPH from the S
2180 meters      -6, Winds were 25-45 KPH from the SSW
1860 meters      -5, Winds were 30-45 KPH from the SSE
1835 meters      -3, Winds were 10-30 KPH from the SSE
1650 meters      -2, 13 cm of new snow, 15 cm in 24 hours, Base 105 cm
1550 meters      -2, 13 cm of new snow, Relative Humidity 99%, Base 74cm
  660 meters       0, Valley Temp, Max Temp Yest +1.1, 4.4 mm of Precip recorded yesterday

    As of 07:00 Hrs we have broken cloud, variable visibility and very light flurries.

For the forecast, the cold front has moved East with an upper level trough following in its wake. The air mass is somewhat unstable so we can expect light snow during the day with overcast skies. A warm front arrives this evening into Saturday morning with a second warm front arriving Saturday evening. The majority of the precipitation in this system is heading South of our zone, snow amounts are now less then forecasted yesterday. Westerly flow will ramp up late on Saturday with strong winds in the alpine. The flow will diminish on Sunday and freezing levels will come back down to a desirable level. ( Max 1500 meters Saturday night-1000 meters by Sunday night) As of now an upper level ridge will bring drier conditions for Monday, still cloudy with some light snow.  Next week has a series of weak fronts moving onshore with seasonable temperatures. Guesstimates: 10-15 cm by Saturday morning, 10-12 cm by Sunday morning, 1-3 cm by Monday morning.

    Satellite image from noon yesterday.

    Still looking favourable for some snow today.


Snow Flakes Forming: No More Rain Drops

Skiing Through an Avalanche: Big Mountain Pillow

Whistler Blackcomb Conditions; Dec 13, 2014: Dave Treadway

Bicycle and Deer Collision: California

Past post, but worthy of a watch: Clemina High marking: Rated R, Some descriptive language

Backcountry Starts Here: Donny Roth's Avalanche Experience


Jumbo Resort decision delayed: Avalanche Concerns

Marker King Pin review: Burly

After nearly dying in avalanche, rider teaches safety first: SnowRiders

Violent snowstorm leaves Five Dead, Cuts off Northern Japan: December 18, 2014

Thanks to Jeff Van Driel for these observations and photo:

Hi Wayne,
I went skiing with friends today up Steep Creek on the Duffey Lake Rd. 
We experienced a low snowpack as expected, but there was some skiing to be had. There was about 30cm at the highway, 80cm at 1775m, and 160cm at 2050m. The upper snowpack was right side up and we had 55cm of boot penetration in the alpine. For snowpack structure, have a look at the graph below. We had a deep tap test fail below the crust on mixed forms. The layer was down only 120cm where we did the test, contrary to our pit wall. We were able to find the dec 4 surface hoar, but it was unreactive to column tests or ski testing. There was evidence of light snow transport on lee features in the alpine and below ridge tops. We experienced mainly cloudy skies, light snowfall, temperatures around -5, and light and variable winds. As we all know, snowpack diminishes quickly below 1800m, and travel through below treeline is best done on a logging road to avoid the inevitable thrash. 
Jeff Van Driel

     Enjoying some turns in the Steep Creek Area.                                                                            Jeff Van Driel Image

    Lower Disease Ridge yesterday afternoon.

    Winch Snow Cat working on preparing the Horstman T-Bar.

    Pakalolo looked more like a Blue Run yesterday afternoon.

    Grooming Wishbone at 16:30 Hours.

    Lights and low level moist cloud. Tube Park at Base 2.

   Old Avalanche Debris near the lake in Steep Creek.                                         Rena Worden Image

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