2022 Spring Statement

Avalanche forecasts have ended for the 2021-2022 winter season.

Mild weather and potential for stable snowpack conditions can make our mountains inviting in the spring and early summer. However, avalanche accidents can and do occur year-round. Any kind of weather can occur any month of the year and unstable snow may develop quickly. Keep your avalanche brains engaged. Your ability to evaluate the snowpack and terrain remain crucial for safety in snow-covered mountains. When in doubt, remember you can almost always avoid avalanches by avoiding travel on or below slopes steeper than 30 degrees.

In “typical” springtime nightly freeze, daily thaw cycles:

  • Avalanche danger is lowest in the morning—plan to travel in and out of the mountains early
  • Wet snow avalanches may occur with daytime warming
  • If you see recent avalanches, or your boots sink easily in soft, wet snow, avoid similar slopes

In multi-day periods without an overnight freeze:

  • Wet snow avalanches may occur any time of day
  • Extended warm weather may produce large, destructive wet slab, wet loose, or glide avalanches
  • Cornices can fail and may trigger larger wet snow avalanches

During wintry storms: 

  • Wind slab or storm slab avalanches may occur during or immediately after a storm
  • Consider avoiding avalanche terrain when you find more than 6-8” of new snow, and during times of heavy snowfall or wind drifting.
  • Warm weather or sunshine immediately following a storm may increase avalanche danger and could produce natural avalanches

Also remember that spring melt/freeze cycles produce non-avalanche hazards, like weak snow bridges above flowing water and hard, refrozen snow conditions that easily allow a long sliding fall. Keep these and other hazards in mind as you stretch out your snow season. You can help your fellow backcountry users by submitting observations on our website. Continue to choose terrain appropriate to the conditions and have a fun, safe spring and summer in the mountains!

Doug Abromeit Avalanche Scholarship

The application deadline for the Doug Abromeit Level 1 scholarship is quickly approaching! Attend a Level 1 avalanche course for free.
Do you know a budding skier, snowboarder, snowshoer between the ages of 14 and 24 that has an interest in the backcountry and avalanche safety? Apply with a short essay on why you should be selected to attend the Level 1 Avalanche Course and how you will use this education to promote avalanche awareness.

Get more details on how to apply here: https://www.idahopanhandleavalanche.org/doug-abromeit-avalanche-scholarship

2021/22 Avalanche Courses Posted!

Friends of Idaho Panhandle Avalanche Center's avalanche safety courses are ready for signup for the 2021/22 winter season! We hope you will join us this winter to further your backcountry and avalanche safety education here in the Idaho Panhandle: Sign up here and get more information on available courses!

We're Hiring: Friends of IPAC Executive Director Position

The Friends of Idaho Panhandle Avalanche Center is excited to annouce the search for a passionate Executive Director to support administrative operations of the Friends’ group, organization of educational programs, management of social media programs, and other tasks assigned by the Board of Directors.

The Friends of the Idaho Panhandle Avalanche Center is a 501(c)3 nonprofit dedicated to supporting the Idaho Panhandle Avalanche Center (IPAC) and providing avalanche education and awareness to backcountry snowsports participants in North Idaho and Northwestern Montana. The primary focus of the Executive Director is to support administrative operations of the Friends’ group, organization of educational programs, management of social media programs, and other tasks assigned by the Board of Directors.

If interested in this position, please review the PDF below of the job posting.

Please email gabe@idahopanhandleavalanche.org with any questions related to this posting.


Support your local avalanche center!

Friends of IPAC needs your help! Make a donation to Friends of IPAC on our donation page: https://www.idahopanhandleavalanche.org/donate Donations can be directed towards a specific cause, made monthly or just once off. We appreciate your support!

The Friends of IPAC is a non-profit 501c3, organized to support and contribute to the educational and public advisory activities provided for the public by the Idaho Panhandle Avalanche Center.