Potentially Skier Triggered Avalanche Buried Teton Pass, WY Under 20-Feet of Snow Today:

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Twin Slides area is great for skiing and has serious avalanche potential. This is the zone that avalanched on Teton Pass today. image: Creative Commons
Twin Slides area is great for skiing and has serious avalanche potential. This is the zone that avalanched on Teton Pass today. image: Creative Commons

A potentially skier triggered avalanche came down this evening and buried Teton Pass, WY (highway 22) in what is being reported as 20-feet of snow.  The avalanche came down onto highway 22 just below the popular Twin Slides ski zone.

Teton Pass is currently closed due to the avalanche.  

“WY 22: Teton Pass closure due to avalanche. Maintenance crews will be working on snow removal.” – WYDOT, today

Crews are currently removing the snow and searching for possible trapped skiers and/or cars.  WYDOT will reevaluate opening the pass again Friday morning.

Teton Pass right now.
Teton Pass right now.

According to the Jackson Hole News & Guide, WYDOT officially reported the avalanche coming down at 4:52pm today.

WYDOT believes the avalanche was skier triggered.

“They do believe it was skier triggered.  They’re looking into that right now.” – Stephanie Harsha, public relations specialist for WYDOT District 3

image: WYDOT today
image: WYDOT today

Harsha also mentioned that the avalanche may have “knocked over a car.  No injuries have been reported.

The Bridger-Teton National Forest Avalanche Center issued a backcountry avalanche warning in effect from 6 pm Thursday evening until 6 pm Friday.

AVALANCHE WARNING EFFECTIVE 12/15/2016 AT 6:00 PM EXPIRING ON 12/16/2016 AT 6:00 PM

For zones: Southwest/Greys River, Continental Divide/Togwotee, Teton
.AVALANCHES ARE LIKELY AND HAVE ALREADY IMPACTED ROADS ON TETON PASS AND IN THE HOBACK CANYON. VERY DANGEROUS AVALANCHE CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED TO CONTINUE THROUGH THE NIGHT AND INTO FRIDAY. – Bridger-Teton National Forest Avalanche Center

Avalanche danger is rated as HIGH today.

High and Extreme avy danger in USA today. image: avalanche.org
High and Extreme avy danger in USA today. image: avalanche.org

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