Big thanks to Backcountry Access for sponsoring this avalanche education content. Check out the additional plethora of avalanche safety resources on their website.
West central Colorado is getting nuked with big winter storm number eight (WS8). While avy danger is high at this time, we do have a solid base in many areas so when things settle and bond we might be looking at the best snowpack in years, if not this century. If this keeps up, big lines will fall. Our local avalanche center here in the Aspen area began their forecasting today. They should have started a few weeks ago, but budget concerns probably make that tough. Good reason to remember their fundraisers, which we’ll announce here when they come up.
At any rate, the Roaring Fork Avalanche Center (RFAC) is reporting a highly variable snowpack with many interesting layers, some of which are weak and dangerous. Exactly our observations over the past days. We plan on being quite cautious until we see some bonding within the pack, or that combined with a big “correction” in the form of many natural avalanches. Blessing is that temps have overall been warm and we’ve had lots of cloudy nights, so layers next to the ground remain strong in comparison with the terrifying depth hoar sugar snow that develops during most of Colorado’s early winter seasons.
Ski town thought for the day:
As long as schools might have “snow days” there will be prayers before school.