** IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT **

As of March 30th, COAC has suspended backcountry avalanche advisories and pro observations until further notice.

On March 23rd, Governor Brown of Oregon issued Stay at Home orders for the public regarding the COVID-19 outbreak. The directives are clear in that “to the maximum extent possible, individuals stay at home or in their place of residence.” On March 27th the Deschutes National Forest issued a closure of all developed recreation sites including trailheads and snoparks. COAC is committed to supporting our community, local emergency services, and agency partners and because of this we felt it important to cease operations as we all work together to minimize the impacts and spread of COVID-19.   

This decision was not taken lightly. Aside from the need to maintain congruency with the Governors' orders, there are inherent risks with backcountry activities in alpine environments and it’s important to consider unnecessary exposure to COAC forecasters, first responders, and local medical staff in light of the current situation.

We look forward to getting back into the mountains and providing you all with the tools to recreate safely in the backcountry. Until then we thank you for your continued support and wish all our mountain community the best of health and wellness.

Snowpack Summary for 2/23/2018

THIS Avalanche Advisory EXPIRED ON Feb 25, 2018 at 4:58 pm
Avalanche Advisory published on Feb 23, 2018 at 4:58 pm
Issued by Kevin Grove
Bottom Line
Increased caution is advised with high stoke and desire stacked up against an increasing avalanche hazard. Travel in avalanche terrain is not advised for Sunday and possibly Monday as well. Heavy snowfall, strong winds, and increasing temperatures are all contributing to high avalanche danger on Sunday and Monday.
Avalanche Character 1: Wind Slab
The winds are expected to increase tonight and range from moderate to strong the next three days out of the west. I will be looking for wind slab formation near and above tree line on NE, E, and SE facing slopes.
Avalanche Character 2: Storm Slab
Four inches of snow tonight, followed by another nine inches on Saturday and 10-16 inches on Sunday are expected. All of this could bring an additional 2-2.5 inches of water (adding up to a lot of new weight) on top of an already deep and unconsolidated snowpack. Additionally, the snow on Friday and Saturday will remain dry and light with increasing density into Sunday as the temperatures warm up.
Avalanche Character 3: Loose Dry
Two feet of snow is forecast for the weekend with snow falling in the 1-3 inches per hour range.
Snowpack Discussion
Avalanche hazard is on the rise this weekend with increasing snowfall, increasing winds, and increasing temperatures. I will be watching out for wind slabs near and above tree line on east facing slopes along with storm slabs and loose dry avalanches on all aspects and at all elevations.
Recent Observations
Sluffing and small storm slabs were reported last weekend with heavy snowfall along with a possible natural slide on Broken Top and two small wind slabs were also reported on Tumalo on Wednesday.
Mountain Weather
Heavy snowfall, moderate to strong winds, with increasing temperatures throughout the weekend all point to increasing avalanche hazard moving into the weekend. 25-30 inches of snow could fall with winds in the mid 20mph range gusting up into the upper 30's.
Disclaimer

This snowpack summary applies only to backcountry areas. Click here for a map of the area. This snowpack summary describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur. This snowpack summary expires in 48 hours unless otherwise noted. The information in this snowpack summary is provided by the USDA Forest Service who is solely responsible for its content.


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