Avalanche Advisory

Issued: Thursday, November 30, 2017 7:30 AM Forecaster: Victor McNeil

Primary Problem

Secondary Problem


BOTTOM LINE:

It's still early season, so until we build a deeper base snowpack I don't anticipate significant recreation in our local mountains. One of the biggest concerns early season is injuring yourself, or your equipment due to rocks and trees which aren't deeply buried. Fortunately the base we do have thus far has received significant heat and been rained on, so it has settled out and is hardening up. As we continue to receive more snowfall this weekend folks might begin to think about getting into the backcountry. Remember a early season snowpack can often be weak, due to lack of consistent snowfall to insulate what's on the ground, low overall snow depths and cold temperatures. Facets (sugar snow) will often times develop and should be watched as it gets buried. A good rule of thumb is the weight of a skier or rider impacts the top three feet of the snowpack. Right now that's everything between your skis and the ground, so you could potentially trigger a slide to the ground.

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT:

We are offering a Free Avalanche Awareness Presentation tonight (Thursday) at Blue Mountain Outfitters at 6pm. On Saturday, December 2 the EOU, ODP will be showing the new Warren Miller movie, Line Of Descent at 5:30 PM on campus in Zabel Hall. Following the film join us at Side A Brewing for a fundraiser to support the WAC, 8 PM. $2 per pint will go to the avy center to help pay for avalanche advisories this winter. On Tuesday, December 5 we will be in Baker City at 6 PM for a Free Avalanche Awareness Presentation at the Baker School District 5J at 2090 4th St. Following the presentation we'll head down to Barley's for a flick and again $2 per pint will go to the WAC. A Huge thanks to Blue Mountain Outfitters, Side A Brewing, Barley Brown's, Terminal Gravity, and Ember's for supporting the WAC and avalanche education. For more info check us out on Facebook/Instagram or at www.wallowaavalanchecenter.org.

Recent Activity

None observed.

Current Conditions

This morning at 5 am skies are partly cloudy, winds are recording in the single digits and temperatures range from the upper teens to upper twenties. At Anthony Lakes ski area (8,000') it was 25 degrees, with winds from the SSW at 5 MPH. In the Southern Wallowas the Schneider Meadows Snotel (5,400') was registering 19 degrees, with a snow depth of 8". In the Northern Wallowas at Mt Howard (8,100) it was 29 degrees, with winds from the SW at 7 MPH. At Salt Creek at 6,000 it was 26 degrees with a SW wind of 7 MPH. The Aneroid Lake Snotel (7,400') was registering 19 degrees with a snow depth of 6". Expect partly cloudy skies today and Friday, with minimal new snowfall and light winds. On Saturday afternoon a Upper Level low off the Pacific Coast will dig south and begin to impact our area by mid day. Snowfall amounts are forecasted up to 7" on Saturday, with a couple more inches falling on Sunday. Temperatures will vary across our forecasting zone with highs landing in the mid to upper twenties and lows in the low twenties to high teens through Sunday. Snow levels will continue to decrease with the temperature. Winds are not forecasted to be a big concern, with forecasts calling for SW winds in the single digits to low teens.


Avalanche Problem #1

ASSESSMENT
It's still very early in the winter season, so expect to come across many exposed trees, sticks, rocks, etc. The overall snowpack depth varies greatly depending on elevation, aspect and exact location.
TREND

Same over next hours


Avalanche Problem #2

ASSESSMENT
By the end of Sunday the local mountains could have around 1' of new snow. This new snow will be sitting on a shallow base, but if its deep enough to ride, it's deep enough to slide. Before getting on slopes greater than 30 degrees, take time to carefully asses the snowpack structure.
TREND

Increasing over next hours


Mountain Weather


        
                
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General Annoucement

A big thanks to everyone who attended the Avalanche Awareness Presentation last night in Joseph at the Winding Waters Boat House. We had a great turnout, roughly 56 folks, enjoyed beer from TG and pizza and wings from Embers. Thanks to Winding Waters for hosting and TG and Embers for the beer and pizza. Victor McNeil will issue the next advisory on Thursday, December 7th at 7am.


DISCLAIMER: This advisory does not apply to developed ski areas and avalanche terrain affecting highways.