The Canadian Avalanche Centre has issued a special avalanche warning for this weekend for most of British Columbia, including the Columbia Mountains around Revelstoke.
“We have a variety of issues within the snowpack right now that cause us two main concerns,” said Ilya Storm, the CAC’s Public Avalanche Warning Services Coordinator. “The first is that the size of avalanches is likely to be much bigger than might be expected and could be triggered remotely, which means triggered at a distance or from the bottom of the slope. Our other main concern is that slopes generally considered safer – lower angle, below treeline – are primed for human triggering.”
He added that local knowledge and a high degree of training will be key in travelling safety in the avalanche terrain this weekend.
“Knowing the slope history is key to good decisions right now,” he said. “And make sure you park in safe spots—well to the side of any avalanche path or far away from the runout zone. Given the size of recent avalanches, the bottom of runout zones this weekend might be father than you think.”
The CAC is advising all recreational backcountry users to carefully monitor avalanche bulletins before heading out this weekend. It is advising everyone heading out to be equipped with a beacon, probe and shovel and to take an avalanche course.
The avalanche danger is rated high at alpine and treeline and considerable below treeline in the North and South Columbias and Glacier National Park this weekend. A storm system is forecast to bring as much as 50 centimetres of snow to the region this weekend.