Winter Park Resort should see snow, avalanche watch for backcountry
January 8, 2017
Winter Park Resort saw snow for most of the day on Sunday with more snow expected through Monday night.
Avalanche danger remains at moderate for the Front Range, but there is an avalanche watch in effect until Monday, Jan. 9 at 12 p.m. The Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC) said if the weather forecast verifies, a strong winter storm will arrive in Colorado overnight on Sunday and heavy snow will fall through Monday night. The avalanche danger will increase on Monday, possibly reaching High (Level 4) at all elevation bands by Monday afternoon, according to CAIC. Pay attention to changing conditions and rapidly increasing avalanche danger as the snow accumulates.
CAIC warns "Triggering a Wind Slab avalanche breaking one to three feet deep is the primary concern today (Sunday). The most suspect slopes are at higher elevations, are steeper than around 35 degrees, and face northwest through northeast to southeast. These avalanches will mostly be small, but will grow in size over the next 24 hours with additional snowfall and strong westerly winds. Corniced slopes, cross-loaded gully features, and steep convex shaped pillows of drifted snow on open slopes and gullies are suspect. Avalanches in the upper storm snow could step down into buried weak layers resulting in larger avalanches. You can trigger a Persistent Slab avalanche from a distance or from below, so give yourself a wide berth around slopes steeper than 30 degrees that have this slab over weak snow combination. You are most likely to find this combination on the same slopes where you can trigger a Wind Slab avalanche."