THIS AVALANCHE ADVISORY EXPIRED ON January 6, 2018 @ 6:58 am
Avalanche Advisory published on January 5, 2018 @ 6:58 am
Issued by Jeff Thompson - Idaho Panhandle Avalanche Center

Selkirks/Cabinets

bottom line

The lack of snow over the past week has given the layers of snow near the surface (storm slabs) a chance to strengthen. Don't let your guard down though...There are still 2 layers deep in the snowpack that can be woken up if triggered.  Even though the snowpack is healing, it's still quietly near a tipping point.  Don't get tempted to test mother nature right now.  Keep a conservative approach to your terrain selection and keep your group in sight. 

How to read the advisory

Selkirks/Cabinets

How to read the advisory

The lack of snow over the past week has given the layers of snow near the surface (storm slabs) a chance to strengthen. Don't let your guard down though...There are still 2 layers deep in the snowpack that can be woken up if triggered.  Even though the snowpack is healing, it's still quietly near a tipping point.  Don't get tempted to test mother nature right now.  Keep a conservative approach to your terrain selection and keep your group in sight. 

2. Moderate

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

2. Moderate

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

2. Moderate

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Below Treeline
Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.
    Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.
Avalanche Problem 1: Deep Slab
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Deep slab avalanches are the number 1 problem right now. If your digging in the snow while you're out, look for and test that old November crust.  The interface at that old crust seems to be waking up. There's enough weight on now that it's starting to fail. Kootenay Boundary, just to the north, is seeing avalanches occur on that layer.

Avalanche Problem 2: Persistent Slab
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 We're finding the buried surface hoar approximetly 2 ft under the surface. It's alive and well on most slopes between 4500 ft -6500 ft. If you're diging on a solar aspect or an area that gets a lot of wind, you might not find it. In wind protected areas near treeline, it's still really reactive.

Avalanche Problem 3: Storm Slab
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The storm slabs are getting stronger every day, by still a layer to keep an eye on. 

Weather and CURRENT CONDITIONS
weather summary

Look for unsettled weather to show up today and stick around until the middle of next week. This storm doesn't look to have a lot of energy but could produce 8-10'' of snow by next Wednesday. Temperatures will be warmer which could mean rain in lower elevations.

Weather observations from the Region
0600 temperature: 29 deg. F.
Max. temperature in the last 24 hours: 31 deg. F.
Average wind direction during the last 24 hours: WSW
Average wind speed during the last 24 hours: 15 mph
Maximum wind gust in the last 24 hours: 40 mph
New snowfall in the last 24 hours: 0 inches
Total snow depth: 120-220 cm inches
Two-Day Mountain Weather Forecast Produced in partnership with the Spokane NWS
For 2000 ft. to 4000 ft.
Friday Friday Night Saturday
Weather: Rain / Snow Rain / Snow Rain / Snow
Temperatures: 34 deg. F. 33 deg. F. 36 deg. F.
Wind Direction: NE SW SW
Wind Speed: 5-7 5-7 5-7
Expected snowfall: Tr-1'' in. 0-.5'' in. 0-.5'' in.
For 4000 ft. to 6000 ft.
Friday Friday Night Saturday
Weather: Snow Snow Snow
Temperatures: 32 deg. F. 27 deg. F. 31 deg. F.
Wind Direction: SW SW SW
Wind Speed: 10-14 12-17 10-12
Expected snowfall: .5-1'' in. 1-3'' in. .5-1'' in.
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.