The possibility of Loose/Wet slides will be increasing today. Rain and warm temperatures are going to have an effect on the snowpack. The duration and amount of rain will be the determining factors today on the avalanche danger. If the snowpack becomes saturated before it has a chance to refreeze, wet slabs may also become more likely especially on slopes with older crusts buried below the surface. Rain on snow, warm temperatures, and high winds are all red flags that you can't ignore in the mountains. Large, overhanging cornices and lingering windslabs that get saturated will be tested on the leeward aspects. Travel below heavily corniced areas today is not a good idea. Paying attention to changing conditions is going to be essential!
Winds are forecasted to be out of the South and Southwest today steady in the mid 20 mph range with gusts into the 30+ range. New, dense windslabs will be likely on the northerly aspects while East and West aspects will begin to get crossloaded as winds intensify combined with increasing snow showers later in the day. Higher winds and additional snow overnight will add to the problem.
We toured around the Northern aspects of Squaw Point yesterday and found a solid snowpack with a few areas of thin windslab on leeward aspects. These windslabs were unreactive in our hasty pits and did not fail on ski cuts or sled cuts. Rain on these remaining windslabs combined with a thick layer of Grauple deposited on Thursday will have the potential to increase their sensitivity especially if wind transport of the new snow is occurring later in the day today. Tomorrow is going to be a different world in the mountains and caution will need to be part of your travel plan as additional rain today, new snow, high winds and above average temperatures change conditions literally overnight.
Large cornices near Lava Point on Thursay that were already failing before the rain.
RAIN and above average temperatures will be the theme today and tomorrow. A cold front will likely bring snowlines down to the valley floors by mid day tomorrow. Today expect a high near 43 degrees at 7700 feet with increasing S and SW winds. Total snow accumulation will be 2-4 inches today with an additional 1-3 overnight. Winds will increase later in the day today with gusts overnight expected to be near 55 mph as a cold front enters our area. Tomorrow brings the bulk of the moisture plume to the West Central with 3-7 inches of snow forecasted and a short lived cooling trend to start the week.
This avalanche advisory is provided through a partnership between the Payette National Forest and the Payette Avalanche Center. This advisory covers the West Central Mountains between Hard Butte on the north and Council Mountain on the south. This advisory applies only to backcountry areas outside established ski area boundaries. This advisory describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur. This advisory expires at midnight on the posted day unless otherwise noted. The information in this advisory is provided by the USDA Forest Service who is solely responsible for its content.