Avalanche Forecasters Urge Extra Caution in Colorado

SnowBrains | | AvalancheAvalanche
snow avalanche in colorado
Southern San Juan avalanche on December 9th, 2013.  photo:  caic.org

Colorado is experiencing above average snowfall this fall.  Colorado is also experiencing some dangerous avalanche conditions this fall.

“Right now we have what appears to be fairly supportable snow but that’s because you’re skiing just in the upper layers of the snowpack.”

“Yet that ‘supportable’ snow is overlying weaker layers.  We’re looking at persistent deep slab instabilities and persistent weak layers, which has created two distinct avalanche problems.” – Telluride Ski Resort Snow Safety Director Craig Sterbenz told thewatch.com

snow avy
Front Range avalanche on December 12th, 2013. photo: caic.org

Telluride is one of the Colorado locations has seen high snowfall and is experiencing high avalanche danger.  Telluride will be hosting an educational event about the current avalanche conditions on Monday, Dec. 16, at 7 p.m. at Rebekah Hall called Venturing into Avalanche Terrain in the San Juan Mountains:

Avalanche Awareness Forum, Telluride, Dec 16th: This forum will include presentations and community discussion about the nature of the San Juan snow pack and thoughts on staying alive in avalanche country, ski area boundary and terrain management, Bear Creek past and present and the issue of uphill travel on the ski area. Guest speakers will include Peter Inglis of the San Juan Field School & Ski Patrol, Scott Speilman USFS, Jon Tukman Telluride Ski Area, and Local Search and Rescue (SAR) members. This event is free an open to the public. Rebekah Hall, Telluride, 7p. 

Fatal avalanche in Colorado last spring
Fatal avalanche in Colorado last spring

“Overall, we have much more snow coverage than we typically do this time of year.”

“On the whole, we’re dealing with more snow, but also a more complex snowpack than what we would normally see this time of year.” – Colorado Avalanche Information Center’s Josh Hirschberg told thewatch.com

Be careful out there and go to this avalanche education event if you’re near Telluride, CO.

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