THIS AVALANCHE ADVISORY EXPIRED ON February 16, 2017 @ 6:11 am
Avalanche Advisory published on February 15, 2017 @ 6:11 am
Issued by George Halcom - Payette Avalanche Center
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The avalanche danger is MODERATE today above 6000 feet. Loose wet avalanches are possible on very steep, sunny slopes in the heat of the afternoon. Wind slabs of varying thickness can still be found on wind-loaded slopes above 7000 feet. Below 6000 feet the danger is LOW.

How to read the advisory


  • Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.
Avalanche Problem 1: Loose Wet
  • Character ?
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    Very Likely
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  • Size ?
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The chances of loose-wet avalanches due to the Sun will be the wild card today. Clouds are forecasted to be increasing as the day goes on? Temperatures last night at the Granite weather station (7600ft) hovered around, and barely dipped below freezing. Today, with the lack of sustained freezing, possible solar radiation, and a high temperature near 7600 feet of 37 degrees, we are still going to be thinking about loose-wet avalanches. 

 

Avalanche Problem 2: Wind Slab
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Wind slabs around the advisory area have continued to stabilize over the last few days due to mild temperatures, light winds, and a lack of loose snow for transport. That being said, there is a lot of country out there and wind slabs still exist on shady, steep, leeward, and/or cross-loaded slopes. Before committing to any large slopes today, evaluate smaller slopes with similar elevation, aspect, and slope angle to see if any wind slabs are still lingering. On steep slopes on the north half of the compass, where wind slabs are most likely to exist, even a small ride from an avalanche could beat you up pretty good. Think about where that slide would take you. Are you riding above gullies, trees, or cliffs? 

advisory discussion

 

***Warren Wagon Road is back OPEN! But be prepared for water on the road.

 

Snowmobiler/Snowbiker Travel Restrictions:  a quick reminder that the Granite Mountain Area Closure is now in effect, please respect Snowcats operating in this and nearby areas.  In addition there are other areas on the Payette National Forest that are CLOSED to snowmobile traffic including Jughandle Mt east of Jug Meadows, Lick Creek/Lake Fork Drainage (on the right side of the road as you are traveling up canyon), and the area north of Brundage Mt Ski area to junction "V" and along the east side of Brundage and Sergeants' Mts. with the exception of the Lookout Rd( junction "S").  Please respect these closures and other users recreating in them.  Winter Travel Map(East side). You can download the map to the AVENZA app on your phone, and know your exact location while you are out riding.

The Friends of the Payette Avalanche Center (FPAC) needs YOU! We are in desperate need of more user support and financial assistance. The avalanche forecast is not a guaranteed service, and is in jeopardy of dwindling down to only a couple of days a week in the near future. Please help if you can by clicking the DONATE tab above. If you value this life saving information, make a donation or help the FPAC in raising funds for the future.

recent observations

Dave and Kent were fortunate enough to take a flight over a good chunk of the advisory area on Monday with a local friend and pilot. There were quite a few impressive slab and loose snow avalanches from last weeks storm cycle around the mountains above McCall (pictures below). They also got to fly over and get a better look at the accident site from Saturday's cornice fall avalanche. Saturday's accident is a good reminder to always be thinking of what could happen/would happen. Example being. The side that people were snowmobiling on the terrain is mellow and travel looked to be easy due to supportable snow. However, there are quite a few tracks that were traversing out on to the cornice (pictures below) that is above a large cliff, and above a drainage that is not easy snowmobiling. And as it turned out, not an easy place to perform a rescue. Third picture down is a fly by of accident sit from Saturday's cornice fall avalanche. Look at where the tree line ends. Use vegetation and rocks as clues to where a cornice begins and ends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CURRENT CONDITIONS Today's Weather Observations From the Granite Weather Station at 7700 ft.:
0600 temperature: 32 deg. F.
Max. temperature in the last 24 hours: 42 deg. F.
Average wind direction during the last 24 hours: southeast
Average wind speed during the last 24 hours: 15 mph
Maximum wind gust in the last 24 hours: 20 mph
New snowfall in the last 24 hours: 0 inches
Total snow depth: NA inches
weather

Today, expect increasing clouds, with a high near 37. South wind around 16 mph.

LONG TERM...Thursday night through Tuesday...A weak cold front will move through the region on Friday morning, ending precipitation during the day Friday. An upper level trough digs southward along the CA coast on Friday afternoon. Precipitation associated with a warm front will move northward into the area late Friday night as the upper level trough moves into southern CA. A secondary wave and cold front will move across the region on Sunday morning. Snow levels will range from 5,000-6,500ft. After this system pushes east, WSW flow will develop across the Western US ahead of a powerful trough in the Gulf of Alaska. An impressive band of precipitation will move into the CA coast with this system and move into our area on Monday afternoon, the Sierras will take a lot of the moisture from this system, but the central Idaho mountains should see a good amount of precipitation, with moderate snow above 7,000ft. Snow levels rise to around 6,500ft with this system, and portions of southeast Oregon could be shadowed from the Sierra Nevada under southwest flow aloft. Moist southwest flow will continue as this trough off the Pac NW coast slowly moves southward and approaches the Pac NW. A series of waves will move through the area keeping precipitation going for most places and snow levels around 4,500-5,000ft MSL for Tuesday.

Two-Day Mountain Weather Forecast Produced in partnership with the NOAA-NWS
McCall Airport at 5021 feet.
  Wednesday Wednesday Night Thursday
Weather: Increasing clouds, with a high near 39. South southeast wind 3 to 5 mph. Rain and snow likely after 11pm. Cloudy, with a low around 32. South southeast wind 6 to 9 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. Little or no snow accumulation expected Rain before 11am, then rain and snow. High near 39. South wind 8 to 14 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. Little or no snow accumulation expected.
Temperatures: high 39 deg. F. low 32 deg. F. high 39 deg. F.
Wind direction: southeast south-southeast south
Wind speed: 3-5 6-9 8-14
Expected snowfall: 0 in. 0 in. 0 in.
Granite Mountain at 7700 feet.
  Wednesday Wednesday Night Thursday
Weather: Increasing clouds, with a high near 37. South wind around 16 mph Snow after 11pm. Low around 29. Breezy, with a south wind 18 to 23 mph, with gusts as high as 32 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible. Snow. Temperature falling to around 25 by 2pm. Breezy, with a south wind 24 to 29 mph decreasing to 18 to 23 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 39 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New snow accumulation of 3 to 7 inches possible.
Temperatures: high 37 deg. F. low 29 deg. F. high 25 deg. F.
Wind direction: south south south
Wind speed: 16 18-23 Gusting to 32MPH 29-18, Gusts to 39MPH
Expected snowfall: 0 in. 1-2 in. 3-7 in.
Disclaimer

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.