9 Dec 2016

December 9, 2016


      Sz 1.5's Na Lakeside Bowl Thurs, there was an avalanche closure in effect. Mark Klassen Pic

A Sa (skier accidental) and several Na (natural) avalanches Sz 1-2 reported in the area               yesterday. Redistributed snow with reverse loading in steep start zones one of the issues,
wind slabs were also forming on Northerly aspects as well. Temperature gradient will continue
to penetrate into the snowpack.


    First Light Thursday December 8, 2016.

    Cirrus cloud began to move in by Noon.

     Cold Temperatures are creating some cool ice formations in Horstman Creek.

    Strong outflow winds Thursday. Max gust yesterday afternoon 98 KPH NNE at 17:30 Hrs

    Wind loading on SW slopes.

    Just before sunset.

Weather Observations for December 9, 2016,: taken at 06:00 Hours.

2240 meters  -12, Winds were 25-35 KPH SE    --Horstman Hut 
2180 meters  -12, Winds were 30-40 KPH SE    --Whistler Peak
1860 meters  -12, Winds were     0-5 KPH ESE --Rendevous
1835 meters  -12, Winds were   5-10  KPH E     --Roundhouse
1650 meters  -13, 1 cm of new snow, 1 cm in 24 hrs, 152 cm Base, RH 85%  --Pig Alley
1550 meters  -14, trace of new snow, trace in 24 hrs, 101 cm Base  RH 85%  --Catskinner 
  660 meters    -9, Valley Temp, Max Temp Yesterday was -8.9. 0.0 mm of Precip recorded yest

    As of 07:00 Hrs we have overcast skies, unlimited visibility and it is snowing less than 1 cm per hr.


A weak slow warm front has pushed into our area early this am in a Southwesterly flow aloft. We can expect light snow throughout the day and into Saturday. We may get more snow Saturday as the low stalls over the area. Lingering flurries for Sunday as the high strengthens. By Monday the arctic high will bring colder temperatures in a strong Northerly flow into at least Wednesday. Slightly warmer temperatures over the weekend with the FL remaining below surface. Most of the moisture out of the low on the coast has gone North or South. Guesstimates: 8-12 cm by Saturday morning, 10-15 cm by Sunday morning. Still some uncertainty in these numbers, we might get up to 20 cm by Sunday morning. Will update amounts by this evening!!                                                                                      

    Goes Satelitte image from this am.

    Most of the forecasted moisture in this image appears to have gone North.

     Centre of the low is still well off the coast. 850 MB image.

    500 MB flow for today into Saturday.


Triggered: Fernie Alpine Resort

The Art of Skiing: Disney Cartoon

Avalanche Tilt Test: Timothyozerkov--Instagram

Avalanche captured on video at Lake Louise: Eric Frigon Instagram


Social Media vs Snow Safety: Backcountry Magazine

Roof avalanche kills an 81 year old man: Russia

Snow concerns for many Euopean Ski Areas: Planet Ski

How to build a snow shelter: Winter Survival


    Blowdown Area                                                                                               Jeff Van Driel Image

Skied up towards Blowdown Peak today. Strong northeast winds were blowing large plumes of snow off of peaks and ridges on the south side of the Duffy Lake Road except for the Blowdown Peak area. Here we saw 2-3 mm surface hoar sitting on top of 20cm of low density snow starting to facet which overlies a layer of surface hoar 2-3mm at 1930m NW aspect. No results yet on this layer as there was not enough load or cohesion above, although the top 20cm sluffed easily in steeper terrain in reaction to skier traffic. Below this, the snowpack resistances increase gradually to the crust down 75cm. Facets forming on the crust, yet no results on this interface. The height of snow at the profile site was 130cm and still variable in other areas. In shallow, rocky and wind scoured areas, faceting was prominent at the basal interface. In the alpine the snow surface had variable wind effect in specific areas with some windslab formation now hidden by redistributed snow. 
Skies were clear, -18 and ridge top winds were light from the southeast. No new avalanches observed. 
Stay warm out there!



         Duffy Lake                                                                                            Jeff Van Driel Image

    Natural activity in Lakeside Bowl Thursday around 12:30 Hrs.                         Mark Klassen Image

    Cirrus Cloud moved in mid day.

    Not looking very cloudy at noon.

    Fresh untouched man made snow!!

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