THIS AVALANCHE ADVISORY EXPIRED ON March 5, 2017 @ 7:03 am
Avalanche Advisory published on March 4, 2017 @ 7:03 am
Issued by Dave Bingaman - Payette Avalanche Center
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The Avalanche Danger is Considerable today above 6000 feet where a combination of high winds and heavy snowfall have created new wind and storm slabs that have fallen on a variety of old snow surfaces.  Below 6000 feet the Danger is Moderate due to less snowfall overnight and warmer temperatures.  With warm temperatures and rising snowlines today, the possibility of loose, wet avalanches will increase in the lower elevations throughout the day.

How to read the advisory


  • Dangerous avalanche conditions. Careful snowpack evaluation, cautious route-finding and conservative decision-making essential.
Avalanche Problem 1: Wind Slab
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Moderate to high winds gusting into the 30+ range yesterday and last night have created a variety of wind slabs and scouring across the West Central Mountains.  Most of the winds have been coming out of the S and Sw so the greatest wind loading has occurred on Northerly slopes.  Cornices have continued to grow as well and should be avoided like the plague right now.  Yesterday we observed rapid loading and crossloading near the ridgetops as well as mid slope in exposed terrain.  Shallow wind slabs, very stiff wind board or crust and drifts were forming on all exposed terrain.  7-10 inches of snow ushered in this storm system overnight with an additional 6-10 inches expected today.  With continued moderate to high S and SW winds forecasted through the next 36 hours, you are going to find wind slabs of various thickness and sensitivity scattered across the upper elevation terrain.  Avoid steep, wind loaded terrain today and be aware of what is above you, the possibility of natural avalanches will increase through the day today.

Avalanche Problem 2: Storm Slab
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Upper elevation locations have already picked up 7-10 inches of new snow overnight and the snowfall is forecasted to double by this evening.  The new snow has fallen on a variety of old snow surfaces including surface hoar, old wind slabs, heat and wind crusts.  Expect natural and human triggerable avalanches on steep terrain today.  Avoid steep, committing terrain, know your surroundings and watch your partners.  Please take the time to report any avalanche activity that you see or trigger through this storm cycle.  You can send us an email at: forecast@payetteavalanche.org or better yet take 5 minutes and submit your observations through our website. Photos, aspect, elevation, trigger type and depth will help us get the word out and may save a life.

advisory discussion

Snowmobiler/Snowbiker Travel Restrictions: Please respect these closures and other users recreating in them.  Winter Travel Map(East side). You can download the map to the AVENZA app on your phone, and know your exact location while you are out riding.  It is your responsiblity to know where closures exist on the forest.

The Granite Mountain Area Closure is in effect Jan15-March 31, please respect Snowcats operating, signed and unsigned closures and other users in this and nearby areas.  In addition there are other areas on the Payette National Forest that are CLOSED to snowmobile traffic including Jughandle Mt east of Jug Meadows, North of Boulder Mtn, East of Rapid Peak, North of the 20 mile drainage, Lick Creek/Lake Fork Drainage (on the right side of the road as you are traveling up canyon), and the area north of Brundage Mt Ski area to junction "V" and along the east side of Brundage and Sergeants' Mts. with the exception of the Lookout Rd( junction "S").

The Friends of the Payette Avalanche Center (FPAC) needs YOU! We are in desperate need of more user support and financial assistance. The avalanche forecast is not a guaranteed service, and is in jeopardy of dwindling down to only a couple of days a week in the near future.We have equipment that is overdue for replacement but lack the funds to purchase new gear including weather station parts and our forecast sleds.  Please help if you can by clicking the DONATE tab above. If you value this life saving information, make a donation or help the FPAC in raising funds for the future.

CURRENT CONDITIONS Today's Weather Observations From the Granite Weather Station at 7700 ft.:
0600 temperature: 24 deg. F.
Max. temperature in the last 24 hours: 28 deg. F.
Average wind direction during the last 24 hours: SW
Average wind speed during the last 24 hours: 7 mph
Maximum wind gust in the last 24 hours: 28 mph
New snowfall in the last 24 hours: NA inches
Total snow depth: 57 inches
Disclaimer

This avalanche advisory is provided through a partnership between the Payette National Forest and the Payette Avalanche Center. This advisory covers the West Central Mountains between Hard Butte on the north and Council Mountain on the south. 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 at 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.