Avalanche Advisory: Monday - Mar 30, 2020

THIS AVALANCHE ADVISORY EXPIRED ON March 31, 2020 @ 6:50 am
Avalanche Advisory published on March 30, 2020 @ 6:50 am
Issued by Josh Feinberg - Eastern Sierra Avalanche Center

SW winds increased last night and will continue thru today with gusts to 50mph over ridgetops, resulting in areas of fresh sensitive windslabs at treeline and above. Warmer temperatures and sunshine will result in loose wet potential on sunny aspects as they warm.  MODERATE avalanche danger exists at all elevations. Triggering avalanches is possible so evaluate snow and terrain carefully, and identify features of concern.  

 

*Given the current situation, an injury at this time requiring medical attention could result in serious consequences for yourself and others. Tone it down, limit your risks! 

 

*Keep at least 6ft of physical distance from others at all times … no car-pooling, no sharing snacks!    

 

*Be respectful of one another, ski one at a time and don’t drop in on top of others.  

 

*To comply with the Inyo County Sheriff’s office request, ESAC’s forecasts and field work is now limited to Mono County.

 

2. Moderate

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Above Treeline
Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.

2. Moderate

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Near Treeline
Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.

2. Moderate

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Below Treeline
Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.
    Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.
Avalanche Problem 1: Wind Slab
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Winds have increased overnight out of the SW and are expected to continue thru today with gusts up to 50mph over ridgetops.  Watch for denser deposits of fresh snow sensitive to human triggering just below ridgelines, sidewalls of gullies, steep convexities, and around cross-slope depressions and rock outcrops on NW-N-E-SE facing slopes at tree-line and above.  A slab could surprise you especially if climbing up from below. Blowing snow and cornices can help you figure out where these slabs may lie, and shooting cracks mean that you are already on one.  Triggering one could sweep you thru trees and result in injury or worse especially on a slope over a cliff band or gully/depression.     

 
Avalanche Problem 2: Loose Wet
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The warmest temperatures we have felt in over two weeks are expected today, with highs reaching near 40°F around 10,000’.  These temps combined with periods of sunshine will lead to loose-wet activity on solar aspects (E-S-W) as they warm, especially near rock bands.  Avoid steep slopes that are becoming wet and manky, and be aware of what could come down on you from above.  Upper elevation slopes that are cooled by the wind may be less concerning.

 
advisory discussion

Cornices have been growing.  Be cautious of getting too close to the edge, and as satisfying as it can be to stomp on them, be aware of how knocking off a large chunk or triggering a potential windslab may effect people below you!  Especially with the amount of people in the backcountry right now it is more important than ever to think about others.  Keep your distance, ski one at a time, don’t drop in on each other.  Carry the right gear - beacon / shovel / probe is still the minimum standard.  

 

If you are choosing to go out despite the requests to avoid the backcountry, slow it down and keep it mellow.  A shallow snowpack with plenty of obstacles means a potential for injury exists for everyone.

 
recent observations

-6-8” sensitive windslabs were found just under the Sherwins ridgeline yesterday, and cornices were actively growing.

 

-Warming air temperatures yesterday combined with some cloud cover resulted in small rollerballs being easily triggered while skiing steeper northerly facing slopes below 9000’. 

 
Weather and CURRENT CONDITIONS
weather summary

Expect sunshine this morning with some clouds, clearing more in the afternoon, with high temperatures warmer than we have seen in a while nearing 40°F around 10,000’.  SW winds have increased into the moderate realm with gusts up to 50mph over ridge tops.  

 

Things will warm up slightly more tomorrow, before cooling back off for the remainder of the week with slight chances of snow again for the weekend.

Two-Day Mountain Weather Forecast Produced in partnership with the Reno NWS
For 8,000 ft. to 10,000 ft.
Monday Monday Night Tuesday
Weather: Partly cloudy. Snow levels below 7000 feet. Chance of precipitation is 5%. Clear. Snow levels 7000 feet. Chance of precipitation is 5%. Sunny. Snow levels 7000 feet increasing to 8000 feet in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 0%.
Temperatures: 39 to 47. deg. F. 24 to 29. deg. F. 41 to 51. deg. F.
Mid Slope Winds: Southwest around 15 mph with gusts to 35 mph. Southwest 15 to 20 mph. Gusts up to 35 mph increasing to 45 mph after midnight. Southwest 15 to 20 mph with gusts to 45 mph.
Expected snowfall: 0 in. 0 in. 0 in.
Over 10,000 ft.
Monday Monday Night Tuesday
Weather: Partly cloudy then becoming sunny. Snow levels below 7000 feet. Chance of precipitation is 5%. Clear. Snow levels 7000 feet. Chance of precipitation is 5%. Sunny. Snow levels 7000 feet increasing to 8000 feet in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 0%.
Temperatures: 33 to 39. deg. F. 20 to 25. deg. F. 33 to 41. deg. F.
Ridge Top Winds: Southwest 20 to 30 mph with gusts to 45 mph. Southwest 15 to 30 mph increasing to 25 to 35 mph after midnight. Gusts up to 50 mph. Southwest 25 to 40 mph with gusts to 55 mph.
Expected snowfall: 0 in. 0 in. 0 in.
Disclaimer
This Avalanche Advisory is designed to generally describe avalanche conditions where local variations always occur. This product only applies to backcountry areas located outside established ski area boundaries. The information in this Avalanche Advisory is provided by the Eastern Sierra Avalanche Center, who is solely responsible for its content.

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