19 Mar 2021

March 19, 2021

     YESTERDAY:

      Sunrise Thursday am was at 07:19 Hrs. -0.3 Deg C with a 15-30 KPH ESE wind.

      Front was moving up from the South West quickly, 09:00 Hrs. 

      Blowing and snowing buy 10:00 Hrs.

     Thin cloud cover in the am but still snowing.

     Snowing at 1800 meters.


      Groomers were fun even with the limited visibility.


     Thursday March 18, 2021. 14:00 Hrs. -2 with a 15-45 KPH ESE wind. +4 in the valley.


      Satellite image from the same timeframe as above image.

      Raining below 1200 meters. Spring like snow conditions.


     16:00 Hrs. -2 with a 15-40 KPH ESE wind. Snowing lightly.


Weather Observations for March 19, 2021 taken at 06:00 Hours.

2240 meters      -7, Winds were 50-70 KPH S--Horstman Hut
2180 meters      -7, Winds were 60-75 KPH E--Whistler Peak
1860 meters      -5, Winds were 20-30 KPH SE --Rendezvous 
1835 meters      -5, Winds were 15-35 KPH ESE--Round House
1650 meters      -3, 16 cm in 12 Hrs, 21 cm in 24 Hrs, Base 284 cm --Pig Alley
1570 meters      -3,  9 cm in 12 Hrs, 11 cm in 24 Hrs, Base 202 cm--Catskinner
  660 meters     +1, Valley Temp, Max temp Yesterday was +6.0, 5.6 mm of precip yesterday.


      As of 07:00 Hrs we have overcast skies, limited visibility and snowing lightly.


FORECAST:

A closed low off the coast will send another cold front our way in a Southerly flow aloft. The FL will likely spike to 1500 meters but thinking it will hover around the 1200 m mark. Periods of light precip today will carry over into early Saturday am with moderate winds. A weak dirty ridge is expected by Saturday pm with a mix of sun, cloud and showers in a Northerly flow aloft. Drier and cloudy later in the afternoon. Another weak front arrives early Sunday am with periods of light precip and cooler temps in a North Westerly flow aloft. Drying out again Monday with some flurries. More snow for Tuesday & Wednesday. Guesstimates: 12-16 cm by Saturday am, 2-4 cm by Sunday am, 10-15 cm by Monday am, 1-3 cm by Tuesday am. 


      GOES IR image from this am.


      Low is sending a cold front our way for today with light precip. Still warm.





      Southerly flow aloft.

        Drying trend Saturday with a mixed bag of weather.





.      Another front arrives for Sunday with cooler temps.


      Short wave trough for Sunday.


     AVALANCHE ACTIVITY:

     25 Taliban were killed in an avalanche in Pakistan. Article below.                                        Net Pic

      Large avalanche on Cloudburst Mtn, cornice collapse triggered slide. MIN repot below. 

      Skier partially buried in avalanche at Berthoud Pass Wednesday. Article below.                Net Pic

     Avalanche mitigation on Whistler in the pm produced some Sz 1 soft slabs Sc, 10-20 cm crowns.

      No new avalanches observed on Blackcomb. Some pockets of soft slab on steep lee slopes in pm.

From Sea to Sky avalanche advisory:

Avalanche Summary

Cornices were triggered by explosives on Monday to Thursday, releasing large chunks that could kill a person but they did not trigger slabs. Avalanche activity is expected to increase in the coming days as a series of storms impact the region.

There's been some large avalanches in the past week around the Whistler area, including one on a north aspect on Cloudburst Mountain, some near Mt. Fee (see here and here), and one last week on Mt. Fissile in the Whistler backcountry. These avalanches may be due to extensive wind loading, but they may also be associated with isolated weak snow from earlier this season.

Snowpack Summary

Snow accumulations are expected to be highly variable across the region on Friday, and will likely increase dramatically with elevation. Storm slabs will be reactive anywhere sufficient snow accumulates, especially on northerly aspects that will receive extra wind loading. The new snow will overly a melt-freeze crust up to around 1600 m and higher on sun-exposed slopes or wind-affected dry snow on northerly aspects at high elevations. Remember that cornices along ridgelines are large at this time of year and always have the possibility of failing naturally or from the weight of a human.

Around 100 to 300 cm of consolidated snow may overly sugary faceted grains formed earlier this season. These layers are expected to be spotty around the region and we haven't received conclusive evidence of them being the culprit of avalanche activity. That being said, it is possible they may be associated with a few recent large avalanches around the Whistler area.


      INFORMATION & OBSERVATIONS:

      Red sky in the morning, skiers take warning!!! Storms a brewing!!

      Rumor was there was not enough staff, heard that some employees were getting their shot??!!


     Wind was moving the snow around Thursday am.

      No T-Bar but lots of keeners braving the storm.

     Snow removal at the Glacier Creek Restaurant. Trying to saw off snow slab.

     Someone said the grouse on Blue Line was hit by a skier. Slow down, let her live.


FROM SEA TO SKY MIN REPORTS:

Cloudburst Mountain: March 17, 2021


VIDEOS:

Beautiful but Deadly: Avalanche Control, Austria

The Farmer: Alta, Utah

Powder Picker March 18, 2021: David Jones


ARTICLES:

25 Taliban rebels were killed in an avalanche in the Zaghni Valley: Pakistan

Skier caught, partially buried in avalanche at Berthoud Pass on Wednesday: Colorado

Where should you wear your beacon: Pocket vs Harness

Avalanche Canada in need of sustainable funding: MLA Clovechok


       Submit your best avalanche photo for a pair of Goggles March 1-31, 2021. Sea to Sky Area.

                                                    Thanks to Volkl Canada for sponsoring.

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