Avalanche danger moderate, shifting

RBC I Backcountry enthusiasts should be aware that avalanche danger is shifting due to a combination of warm weather and recent snowfall. Colorado Avalanche Information Center’s (CAIC) Brian Lazar highlighted more than 700 avalanches in the last week of February, including large avalanches near Marble and Crested Butte. Lazar said most activity took place in the central and southern mountains of the state which got more snowfall in recent storm events. 

All regions on the Western Slope including the Flat Tops Wilderness Area are currently listed as “moderate“ danger on the CAIC‘s website.

Lazar described the shifting conditions in the Weekly Avalanche Update for March 3 as “a tricky transitional period with a lot of very warm temperatures.” He explained that these factors are producing a mix of different avalanches types, including:

• wet avalanche activity at sunny and lower elevations, 

• wet-slab avalanches breaking loose on warmer southerly slopes, mostly near tree lines 

• dry slab avalanches breaking loose on northerly colder slopes buried by fresh snow from recent storms.

Anyone heading into the backcountry is advised to check up-to-date avalanche information at avalanche.state.co.us

CAIC also shares weekly safety updates and other avalanche related info on their YouTube page https://bit.ly/3Cr3pzD

By LUCAS TURNER | lucas@ht1885.com