25 Dec 2018

December 25, 2018

                                        Merry Christmas


    Awesome light in the morning, forgot my camera. All images from an I-Phone.

    Stratus layer in the valley, that persisted to the North end of the valley most of the day.

    Looking toward Ipsoot early Monday morning.

    Blackcomb Glacier has been opened since Sunday.

    Nice conditions at the top of 5-0. Still a rock in the guts.


    Looking North, same time line as below.

    Looking Southwest.

    Just before sweep time.

    Later in the afternoon.

    Monday afternoon.

Weather Observations for December 28, 2018  taken at 06:00 Hours.

2240 meters     -10, Winds were 10-15 KPH S--Horstman Hut
2180 meters       -7, Winds were     0-5 KPH WSW--Whistler Peak
1860 meters     -10, Winds were     0-5 KPH SE--Rendevous
1835 meters       -8, Winds were     0-5 KPH SSW--Round House
1650 meters       -9, 0 cm of new, trace in 24 hrs, Base 215 cm--Pig Alley
1565 meters       -8, 0 cm of new, trace in 24 hrs, Base 155 cm--Catskinner
  660 meters       -6, Valley Temp, Max temp Yesterday was +1.1, 0.0 mm of precip recorded yest

   As of 06:00 Hrs this am we have clear skies, unlimited visibility and some mid mtn scattered cloud.


An upper ridge will bring mainly sunny skies to the area today in a Northerly flow aloft. The FL will be below surface. A weak front will push onshore later today with an increase in the cloud cover with light precipitation by early Wednesday morning. Wednesday will be overcast with seasonable temperatures. Another weak ridge for Thursday with mostly sunny skies. Unsettled Friday as another weak front pushes into our area with light precipitation for Friday night into Saturday. Weekend forecast is undetermined as the models are in total disagreement so stand by as we get closer. Guesstimates: 1-3 cm by Wednesday morning, 2-4 cm by Thursday morning.

Riding conditions are good everywhere.

    GOES IR Image from this am.

    High pressure with colder arctic air from the North.

   Fronts along the coast.

     Low will send a weak front our way for Wednesday.

    High pressure again for Thursday with cold temps.

    Next low will send a weak frontal band our way by Friday night.


   Old debris from a remote release Xh from last Friday in Blackcomb Glacier. Click: Cool Stauchwall

    Locally a few  Sz 1-2 with cornice control Xe, Xc.



   127 cm in the past week.

    Click here for Definition of Jelly Fish Clouds

    Looks like DOA is good to go!!

    Some cornices are beginning to peal Away. Be aware!!

    Not the place to be standing, ever!!!

    Big picture Monday afternoon.

From Zander Strathearn:
Enjoyed your blog for a while and just thought I would send you a couple shots from around hanging lake today. 

There were probably 15 tourers that came up from the Callahan along with three sledders that did cross into the watershed but were in the hanging lake area. 

First photo is skier triggered on a very steep unsupported south aspect, you can see the people.  There was a firm layer that probably caused by warm air/wind about 20cm down in localised pockets through the area.   Second photo was triggered by sleds remotely I think about 50 m away from the tracks on a north aspect. 

                                                                                                                          Zander Strathearn Image

                                                                                                                            Zander Strathearn Image

Avalanche Canada MIN Reports:

Spearhead Conditions: Dec 24, 2018

Hanging Lake Area: Dec 24, 2018

From South Coast Touring:
Bram Whillock

Conditions update from the spearhead.
Things at this point have filled in nicely and the zone is skiing quite well. Harnesses and rope was brought but never deployed. As you can see from photos there are still significant slots on both the spearman and decker glaciers, but they are quite avoidable in good visibility. There are some surprising holes while skinning high near the Cham chute entrances so keep your wits around there.
Cham 3 is filled enough to ski but quite crusty. Cham 2 looks good as well. Cham 1 is way too rocky. Vista bowl is fairly rocky at the top. Vista chute in good shape as well. Decker 9th hole well filled with some cornice debris, currently a short drop over the cornice to get in.
Windward and rocky areas are extremely poorly filled in. You have to walk from the base of decker through the rock field to ski out decker creek. Upper disease ridge is extremely rocky and unskinnable. Bootpacking is rugged, rocky areas are still faceted and it makes for tricky boot packing.
Merry Xmas shredders!


Advisory warns of heightened avalanche risk in the backcountry: CBC

Avalanche Danger in Aspen-Area Mountains increase with new snow: Colorado

How snow fences are helping to protect you this ski season: MBN

Jo Morgan's miraculous escape from the avalanche that killed two: New Zealand

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