Friday, February 15, 2019
Woohoo! It snowed!!! The sun is shining! The trails are groomed! Ruthie’s Run, Magic Meadows, and the Beaver Trail are groomed today, along with most of the East Side trails. Avalanche danger is HIGH today. Please do not travel off groomed trails and obey ALL trail closures. Travel up Peanut Lake Rd past the Gronk is NOT advised today; please use Beaver trail to access Magic Meadows.
An announcement from the Crested Butte Avalanche Center:
There is an Avalanche Warning for the Gunnison, Sawatch, North San Juan, and South San Juan zones through 8 AM Saturday morning. Backcountry avalanche conditions are very dangerous. A foot or more of dense snow fell rapidly and is being drifted by very strong winds. Human triggered and natural avalanches are very likely. Avalanches will be dangerous, destructive, and run long distances. Backcountry travel in or below avalanche terrain is not recommended.
This heavy, wet storm will also greatly strain buried persistent weak layers 3-6 feet deep. Expect the unexpected. An unusual storm like this will create unpredictable avalanche behavior. Explosive work at Irwin yesterday began to produce large persistent slab avalanches with only 6-8” of new snow. Backcountry tourers remotely triggered a large avalanche in nearby Evans Basin yesterday. We have now doubled or tripled yesterdays snow totals. This is the real deal and travel in avalanche terrain today should not be under-estimated. Maintain very large margins from steep, adjacent slopes. Even routine travel such as the Kebler Pass corridor, slopes near town and Mount Crested Butte will be ripe for human triggered avalanches.
So, please be safe and have fun in the sun! See you out there!