THIS AVALANCHE ADVISORY EXPIRED ON March 27, 2019 @ 6:36 am
Avalanche Advisory published on March 26, 2019 @ 6:36 am
Issued by Melissa Hendrickson - Idaho Panhandle Avalanche Center

St. Regis Basin/Silver Valley

bottom line

We've started to return to more of a normal spring cycle; freezing temperatures at night then warmer days. The cloud cover and lower temperatures will help reduce the potential for wet, loose slides.  Be aware that the danger rises as the sun comes out.  Plan to hit the slopes early on the warm days and leave when pinwheels start showing up.  

How to read the advisory

St. Regis Basin/Silver Valley

How to read the advisory

We've started to return to more of a normal spring cycle; freezing temperatures at night then warmer days. The cloud cover and lower temperatures will help reduce the potential for wet, loose slides.  Be aware that the danger rises as the sun comes out.  Plan to hit the slopes early on the warm days and leave when pinwheels start showing up.  

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.
Avalanche Problem 1: Loose Wet
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We've had lots of warm days in a row that have destabilized the snowpack.  Freezing temperatures overnight will have the mornings more stable, but as the slopes heat up with the sun and rising temperatures expect the loose, wet danger to increase.  Watch for pinwheels and rollerballs to give you an indication as to when it's time to head to the more shady side.  

Avalanche Problem 2: Glide
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As more and more water filters down through the pack we are seeing more glides open up around the area.  Glide cracks are caused by free water lubricating the bed surface underneath.  When that bed surface is smooth, such as rock slabs or bear grass, the snow starts to slide.  There is a potential for larger slides to be triggered underneath as all that weight starts moving, so if you see a crack seperating in the snow, avoid that area!  

recent observations

We had a week of very warm temperatures that caused a lot of water to travel down through the pack.  As I've been out travelling the past couple of days, there has been plenty of evidence that the warm cycle took a toll on our snowpack.  We've obsereved pinwheels that are up to 5' in size, loose wet slide paths, the snow collapsing around our skis, mushy snow that we sunk into up to our boot tops, and glide cracks.  All of these are signs of wet avalanche danger potential.  If you are seeing fresh sign, it's time to relocate to a cooler aspect or to get out of avalanche terrain.  

Weather and CURRENT CONDITIONS
Two-Day Mountain Weather Forecast Produced in partnership with the Spokane NWS
For 2000 ft. to 4000 ft.
Tuesday Tuesday Night Wednesday
Weather: Slight chance showers then partly sunny Partly cloudy increasing clouds
Temperatures: 48 deg. F. 31 deg. F. 52 deg. F.
Wind Direction: SW E NE
Wind Speed: 8 - 10 6 6-14
Expected snowfall: 0 in. 0 in. 0 in.
For 4000 ft. to 6000 ft.
Tuesday Tuesday Night Wednesday
Weather: Snow Showers likely then mostly cloudy Partly Cloudy Increasing Clouds
Temperatures: 36 deg. F. 28 deg. F. 40 deg. F.
Wind Direction: SW SW E
Wind Speed: 9-14 5-10 10-16
Expected snowfall: <1 in. 0 in. 0 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.