Avalanche Advisory: Wednesday - Apr 1, 2020

THIS AVALANCHE ADVISORY EXPIRED ON April 2, 2020 @ 6:43 am
Avalanche Advisory published on April 1, 2020 @ 6:43 am
Issued by Steve Mace - ESAC

*This will be the final Avalanche Advisory of the 2019/2020 season. On March 31st 2020, Mono county issued a formal request for residents to refrain from high-risk activities echoing this request from the Inyo County Sheriffs Department. In an effort to honor these requests and address worker safety concerns ESAC will cease all field activity at this time.*

Video message from Nate Greenberg, President of the Eastern Sierra Avalanche Center

MODERATE avalanche danger exists at all elevations. With another day of sunny skies and very warm temperatures expected, sizable Loose Wet avalanches will be possible at all elevations particularly on solar aspects. Wind slabs may also be possible near and above treeline. Heightened avalanche conditions exist, and human triggered avalanches remain possible. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully.

 

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: Loose Wet
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Unseasonably warm temperatures are expected again today and the strong California sun will be out in force.  Expect Loose wet hazard to ramp up quickly this morning on easterly slopes transitioning to southerly and westerly slopes by the afternoon.  While Solar aspects will be most concerning today the ambient air temperature may be enough to loosen surface snow on shaded northerly aspects at lower elevations. Wet, sticky snow surface, rollerballs and pinwheels, and increasing boot penetration are all signs of surface warming and may foreshadow larger point release avalanches.  Be aware of hazards posed by terrain features above and below you. Natural or human triggered Loose wet activity today could be large and consequential. 

Avalanche Problem 2: Wind Slab
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The last couple of days of warm temperatures and dry weather have led to a healing trend. While wind slabs deposited during last weekend’s storm will be more stubborn at this point they may still be sensitive to human triggers.  Exposed leeward catchment zones, cross-loaded depressions, steep convexities, and gully features near and above treeline deserve extra consideration. Blowing snow, hollow-sounding dense snow, recent cornice growth, and uneven snow surfaces are all clues that indicate nearby wind deposits. Do your own localized assessments, be aware of what is above you, and be suspect of terrain features that encourage drifting particularly in extreme or complex terrain. 

 

advisory discussion

More Avalanche activity has been observed over the last two weeks than we have seen for most of the season. Those of you who see MODERATE danger as the new LOW may be in for a surprise today. Large human triggered avalanches remain possible at all elevations and on all aspects. Keep your eyes open for signs of instability today and use terrain choice to limit your exposure.  

If you are choosing to venture into the Backcountry despite the request of local and state governments, please keep in mind the elevated risks you are taking. Be aware that the typical emergency rescue services are diminished at this time and may not be available if you get injured. Every effort should be taken to limit your risk and to avoid putting additional strain on our limited rescue and healthcare resources. Slow it down, keep it mellow and stay healthy.

Weather and CURRENT CONDITIONS
weather summary

Expect clear skies and unseasonably warm temperatures today. Day time highs may reach into the upper 40°F near 10000’.  Winds are expected to be strong out of the southwest today with ridgetop gusts as high as 75 mph. 

Sunny skies and cooler temperatures are expected tomorrow and Friday before another period of unsettled weather moves through the region this weekend. 

Two-Day Mountain Weather Forecast Produced in partnership with the Reno NWS
For 8,000 ft. to 10,000 ft.
Wednesday Wednesday Night Thursday
Weather: Sunny. Clear. Sunny.
Temperatures: 37 to 47. deg. F. 12 to 20. deg. F. 32 to 40. deg. F.
Mid Slope Winds: Southwest 15 to 30 mph with gusts to 50 mph. West 15 to 25 mph. Gusts up to 45 mph. Northwest around 15 mph. Gusts up to 35 mph decreasing to 25 mph in the afternoon.
Expected snowfall: 0 in. 0 in. 0 in.
Over 10,000 ft.
Wednesday Wednesday Night Thursday
Weather: Sunny. Clear. Sunny.
Temperatures: 28 to 36. deg. F. 10 to 16. deg. F. 23 to 31. deg. F.
Ridge Top Winds: Southwest 30 to 50 mph with gusts to 75 mph. Southwest 30 to 50 mph with gusts to 65 mph. West 15 to 30 mph. Gusts up to 45 mph decreasing to 35 mph in the afternoon.
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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