THIS AVALANCHE ADVISORY EXPIRED ON January 12, 2017 @ 6:59 am
Avalanche Advisory published on January 11, 2017 @ 6:59 am
Issued by George Halcom - Payette Avalanche Center
bottom line

Today, the avalanche danger is CONSIDERABLE for elevations above 6,000 feet. Human triggered avalanches are LIKELY on steep, wind drifted slopes, and rocky slopes, especially those facing the north half of the compass. 

Below 6,000 feet MODERATE avalanche danger exists and human triggered slides are possible.

How to read the advisory


  • Dangerous avalanche conditions. Careful snowpack evaluation, cautious route-finding and conservative decision-making essential.
Avalanche Problem 1: Wind Slab
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The first warm, wet, windy system impacted our region Monday, creating fresh wind slab hazard. Due to the strong South-southwest winds and snow available for transport, drifting occurred in unusual locations and lower down slope. Yesterday another 3-5 inches of new snow and moderate to light winds out of the SSW continued to form windslabs on our Northern aspects until about noon when the winds died down. I was able to get some cracking in the new,10 inch wind slabs that had formed. Cautious routefinding and overall safe travel protocols are going to be important in wind effected and wind loaded terrain. If you do go out today, you will want to steer clear of steep, wind drifted terrain and be on the look out for and avoid any rounded, fat, pillows of snow, especially if they feel or sound hollow like a drum. See our observations section for a report of skiers triggering wind slabs on Saturday on a NW slope in the Lick Creek drainage.

Avalanche Problem 2: Storm Slab
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With the high winds, storm slabs will be found in areas sheltered by the wind. However, if you were to find an are the a storm slab exists, it could be really easy to trigger depending on the snow surface that it is sitting on. For example, if the snow from the past 24 hours is resting on windboard it will be easy to trigger due to the new snow having trouble bonding with that old hard surface. Play it safe for the next few days and ride in low angle terrain that is not under or connected to any steeper avalanche terrain.

advisory discussion

Remember your information can save lives. If you see anything we should know about, please participate in the creation of our own community avalanche advisory by submitting snow and avalanche conditions. It's okay if you leave some fields blank, just quickly fill out what you know. Or you can email us at  forecast@payetteavalanche.org.

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recent observations

Yesterday, we toured near Fisher Creek Saddle. The South/Southwest winds left their mark on the East aspect that we climbed...wind drifts and spines were the theme on the way up...I was able to get some cracking within the new 10 inch wind slabs that had formed. The snow had an upside down feeling when you walked in it where the wind had effected it, but pits didnt show much difference in the new snow near the top. We were able to get moderate results in our pits: CT17Q3 on the new/old snow interface about 35 cm down from the surface. We are still seeing areas around rocks and trees with a tendancy to harbor weak and faceted snow that will swallow you, and have the potential to be a trigger point, especially in thinner areas. 

Remember your information can save lives. If you see anything we should know about, please participate in the creation of our own community avalanche advisory by submitting snow and avalanche conditions. It's okay if you leave some fields blank, just quickly fill out what you know. Or you can email us at  forecast@payetteavalanche.org.

 

weather

A Winter Storm Warning is still in effect through 5pm this afternoon due to the chance for additional snowfall and wind for the West Central Mountains.

Last night temperatures hovered just below freezing at snowtel sites throughout the advisory area, and local resorts picked up around 3 inches of snow...winds have been out of the south and southwest blowing in the teen's until dropping down to single digits yesterday afternoon.

For today expect the temperatures warm up until noon then trend downward. The mountains will pick up another 2-4 inches of snow and Long Valley around another 1-3 inches. Winds will be out of the West-southwest 3-11 MPH.

 

Two-Day Mountain Weather Forecast Produced in partnership with the NOAA-NWS
McCall Airport at 5021 feet.
  Wednesday Wednesday Night Thursday
Weather: Snow showers. Temperature rising to near 31 by noon, then falling to around 21 during the remainder of the day. South southwest wind 3 to 8 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches possible. A 40 percent chance of snow showers. Patchy fog after 11pm. Otherwise, cloudy, with a low around 6. Wind chill values between -1 and 4. West southwest wind 5 to 7 mph becoming light and variable in the evening. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible. Patchy fog before 11am. Otherwise, partly sunny, with a high near 22. Light and variable wind.
Temperatures: 21 deg. F. 29 deg. F. High 28 deg. F.
Wind direction: South-southwest East Northwest becoming West-southwest
Wind speed: 3 to 8 3-7 7
Expected snowfall: 1-3 in. less than one in. 0 in.
Granite Mountain at 7700 feet.
  Wednesday Wednesday Night Thursday
Weather: Snow showers. High near 23. West wind 7 to 11 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches possible. A 40 percent chance of snow showers. Cloudy, with a low around 9. Wind chill values between -2 and 3. South southwest wind around 8 mph. New snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible. Partly sunny, with a high near 17. Wind chill values between -3 and 7. South southwest wind 5 to 8 mph.
Temperatures: 23 deg. F. Low 9 deg. F. High 17 deg. F.
Wind direction: West South-southwest South-Southwest
Wind speed: 7 to 11 8 5 to 8
Expected snowfall: 2 to 4 in. 1 to 2 in. 0 in.
Disclaimer

This avalanche advisory is provided through a partnership between the Payette National Forest and the Friends of 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.