5 Mar 2017

March 5, 2017


   An avalanche at Hanging Lake near Whistler has killed a ski tourer, story in article section.

    Man rescued after being buried 2 meters in Cypress Prov Park, story in article section.

    Another avalanche was set off by some skiers near Tricouni Peak, no involvement.

    Avalanche control on WB yesterday produced Sz 1-2 avalanches Xc, Xh, Xe, Sc.


    Whistler Saturday morning, March 4, 2017.

    Mount Currie.

    Good conditions on Saturday.

    Saturday Morning.

    Eventually some cloud rolled into the valley.

    Cougar Chutes.

    Flurries in the afternoon.

    Unsettled later in the afternoon.

    Phalanx Ridge.

    Sunset was at 17:58.

Weather Observations for March 5, 2017: taken at 06:00 Hours.

2240 meters      -13, Winds were 20-45 KPH NE --Horstman Hut 
2180 meters      -14, Winds were 15-30 KPH SW--Whistler Peak
1860 meters      -13, Winds were 10-25 KPH W   --Rendevous
1835 meters      -12, Winds were   5-10 KPH SW --Roundhouse
1650 meters      -11, 3 cm of new snow, 5 cm in 24 hrs, 280 cm Base, RH 90%  --Pig Alley
1550 meters      -10, 1 cm of new snow, 3 cm in 24 hrs, 198 cm Base, RH 92%  --Catskinner 
  660 meters        -5, Valley Temp, Max Temp Yesterday was +1.1, 0.2 mm of Precip recorded yest

   As of 07:00 hrs this am we have obscured skies, limited visibility and it is snowing lightly.


A cold upper trough will bring overcast skies with light snowfall in a Southerly flow aloft.
The FL will remain below surface for the next few days. A weakening series of frontal bands
will bring light to moderate snowfall into Wednesday. Models have taken a dramatic shift
for the long range, with the low that was to bring warmer temps and some mod/heavy precip
is now moving South. Wednesday and Thursday are now looking unsettled with some flurries.
Standby as things change quickly.

Guesstimates: 8-12 cm by Monday morning, 8-12 cm by Tuesday morning, 5-10 cm by Wednesday morning.

     GOES IR image this am.

    Overcast with light snow today.

    Flow last night into Sunday.

    Low moves East today.

    Snow for Monday into Tuesday.

    Unsettled on Wednesday.


     Saturday morning.

    Avalanche at Hanging Lake.                                                                             Brian Fishbook Pic

March 4 at 9:58pm

Avalanche fatality today at Hanging Lake. 

Our group aided SAR with recovery. Crown was 80-100cm deep, 200m wide (multiple breaking points), NW aspect and debris path went right to Hanging Lake, a distance of over 1km. SAR said avi size was 2-2.5 and happened at 11:30am. Slide path went over the ski track we used on way up. 

SAR said no one was able to get a beacon signal, despite multiple passes down slope. They then asked us to help, by trying to probe the entire slope. A big team was set up at lake, moving upward in line, and we spread out in debris up high, probing areas around trees and benches. We had a few false hits and made digs to 3m. They also had dogs going up and down slope and said probing would help dogs by releasing scent from snowpack. We learned a bit more about incident while probing with SAR. They said victim had on avalanche airbag backpack which was ripped off. His buddies had last seen him as soon as he had dropped off ridge, yet two other people had skied same line just before him. They had found one of his skis. No one else was involved in slide. 

Finally, after nearly 3 hrs of probing, around 3:30pm, we got a call on radio that they had a good probe strike from a dog, and asked me to ski down O2 canister. When I got down, they had just gotten him out and were performing CPR. Location was behind me and to left, in lake photo. He had slid full distance from ridge to lake bottom, but was buried less than 1m. They said his beacon was in ‘search mode’; no idea if he set it wrong, or force of avalanche did this. We left soon after, quite shooken up by whole ordeal. 

Stay safe out there…

    Probe Line at accident site.                                                      

   NW facing slope, 35 Deg, 80 cm crown at 1800 meters, ran on rain crust.

    Hanging Lake avalanche site.

    Armchair Glacier Saturday afternoon.


An avalanche has claimed the life of a ski tourer near Whistler: Hanging Lake

Man rescued from 2 meters of snow after avalanche in Cypress Prov. Park: CBC News

Coquihalla closed with high avalanche hazard: Hope

Avalanche-hit Shershal still looks like a ghost village: Pakistsan

Avalanches threaten Juneau neighbourhood, briefly close Klondike Hwy: Alaska

Skier injured on intermediate run at Vail sues "Negligent" snowboarder: Colorado

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