THIS AVALANCHE ADVISORY EXPIRED ON March 11, 2017 @ 7:02 am
Avalanche Advisory published on March 10, 2017 @ 7:02 am
Issued by Eric Morgan - Idaho Panhandle Avalanche Center

Selkirks/Cabinets

bottom line

We've received about 1 foot of snow on the level since last week and steady westerly winds have piled it up even deeper on lee aspects.  Warming temperatures with the most recent accumulation of several inches last night will have created an unstable situation at the surface, particularly in those wind-loaded areas.  Touching off a small slab in steep terrain could step down to lower layers.  

How to read the advisory


  • Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.

Selkirks/Cabinets

How to read the advisory

2. Moderate

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Above Treeline

2. Moderate

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Near Treeline

2. Moderate

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Below Treeline

We've received about 1 foot of snow on the level since last week and steady westerly winds have piled it up even deeper on lee aspects.  Warming temperatures with the most recent accumulation of several inches last night will have created an unstable situation at the surface, particularly in those wind-loaded areas.  Touching off a small slab in steep terrain could step down to lower layers.  

  • Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.
Avalanche Problem 1: Wind Slab
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    Very Likely
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Wind slabs will be the touchiest feature out there today.  Additional wind-loading and warming temperatures should have you suspect of steep, wind effected terrain today.  Cornices were easily touched off yesterday in the Cabinets due to the heavily build in the last week.  Favor terrain margins and watch for red flags like shooting cracks, high winds, rapid warming, rain, and test snow thoroughly before committing to steep slopes.

Avalanche Problem 2: Storm Slab
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  • Aspect/Elevation ?
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    Certain
    Very Likely
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  • Size ?
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The snowfall has been persistent in the last week and no major weak layers have developed in the pack above the ice crust.  There are failure planes in the upper 3-4 feet above the crust associated with changes in snow density, temperature change, and amount of wind.  These have been failing with moderate to hard force in stability tests.  That means weak layers exist and you need to be careful today but the warming temperatures will settle weak layers as the warm weather continues.

CURRENT CONDITIONS Weather observations from the Region
0600 temperature: 34 deg. F.
Max. temperature in the last 24 hours: 34 deg. F.
Average wind direction during the last 24 hours: W to NNE
Average wind speed during the last 24 hours: 25 mph
Maximum wind gust in the last 24 hours: 52 mph
New snowfall in the last 24 hours: 7 inches
Total snow depth: 108 inches
Disclaimer

Avalanche conditions change for better or worse continually. Backcountry travelers should be prepared to assess current conditions for themselves, plan their routes of travel accordingly, and never travel alone. Backcountry travelers can reduce their exposure to avalanche hazards by utilizing timbered trails and ridge routes and by avoiding open and exposed terrain with slope angles of 30 degrees or more. Backcountry travelers should carry the necessary avalanche rescue equipment such as a shovel, avalanche probe or probe ski poles, a rescue beacon and a well-equipped first aid kit.  For a recorded version of the Avalanche Advisory call (208)765-7323.