Snowpack Summary published on March 9, 2017 @ 9:29 pm
Issued by Ben Bernall - Kootenai National Forest
Avalanche Character 1: Storm Slab
Storm Slab avalanches release naturally during snow storms and can be triggered for a few days after a storm. They often release at or below the trigger point. They exist throughout the terrain. Avoid them by waiting for the storm snow to stabilize.

So, in case you haven't heard.  Winter is still here and about to give us another shot of heavy mountain snows begining Thursday night and rolling into Friday.  This additional rapid loading combined with the high forecasted winds will likely create dangerous avalanche conditions this weekend.

BOTTOM LINE: Avalanche stability decreases rapidly with rapid changes in weath

weather summary

Backcountry Forecast from NWS Missoula issued:
220 PM MST Thu Mar 9 2017

DISCUSSION: Widespread light snow down to 1500 feet this morning
will slowly rise throughout today, particularly for all ranges
south of I-90.

Significant heavy snow remains in the forecast for northwest
Montana ranges,
particularly in the vicinity of Glacier Park, this
evening through Friday. An arctic airmass will move west of the
Continental Divide today and stall along the Canada border today.
The stalled edge of the arctic air will be a focal point for
periods of intense snowfall. Up to 2 feet accumulation is expected
along the Continental Divide. The arctic air will slowly retreat
east late tonight, with snow levels and snow density increasing
over time (i.e., upside down snow pack). Wind will also be a
factor right along the Continental Divide, where east winds
gusting to 30 mph will transport fresh snow to west facing slopes.
Large fluctuations in temperatures will add to dangerously
variable backcountry travel conditions.

Conditions for backcountry travel improve this weekend with high
pressure overhead, however it is not necessarily a dry forecast.
Snow levels will increase substantially through the weekend,
reaching 5000 feet at times. Additional storm systems will bring
more snow, mostly above 5000 feet, through the next week. Mountain
snow pack will continue to steadily increase.


--------------------------- 5000-7000 FT ----------------------------
                               Tonight         Fri                  Fri Night        Sat     
Cloud Cover            95%              90%               75%               80%     
Hi/Lo Temps           21 to 30        34 to 39        22 to 27         32 to 38
Winds(mph)            SW 11G31     SW 21G47     SW 13G33      S  7    
Precip Chc              100                100               30                  40      
Precip Type            snow              snow             snow             snow    
Liquid Amt             0.77                0.49              0.01              0.05       
Snow Amt(in)         9-11                5-8               0                   0-1     
Snow Level           1000                3000            4500             3000  


This advisory applies only to backcountry areas outside established ski area boundaries. This advisory describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur. This advisory expires midnight on the posted day unless otherwise noted. The information in this advisory is provided by the USDA Forest Service who is solely responsible for its content.