Snow Report - 14-04-2015

Avalanche

Risk: Medium

Daily Update

Weather

We might have a few thin clouds at altitude but nothing that will come close to spoiling this fantastic spring day here in Val d’Isere. Today we’ll enjoy loads of sunshine and extremely warm maximum temperatures of +16° at 2000m and +7° at 3000m.  Winds will be variable and light throughout the day.

Clear skies tonight mean you can enjoy a good view of the stars.  Temperature in resort will drop to around 0°.

Tomorrow is set to be another great sunny day.

Ski Report

A few more small restrictions to add to the list today as we get towards the end of the season: in the Bellevarde the bottom of the Joseray and the bottom of the Epaule de Charvet join the piste Triffolet.  In the Fornet only the Table d’Orientation and the Cognon are closed, in the Solaise the top of the Aiglon and the bottom of Marmottons are shut.

The risk of avalanche is going up to a 3 out of 5. Watch out for slopes that get a lot of sun.   If you are at all unsure about your abilities off-piste please think about hiring a professional guide.

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Pisaillas

Henry's Avalanche Talk

Off Piste Snow Conditions

We're finding quite a variety of off-piste conditions, a lot of it excellent, and ski touring is really the best way to find it at the moment:

On cold, high, N facing slopes sheltered from the effects of the sun and wind, we can still find cold, light powder snow (although this is becoming more and more scarce). A lot of it has been wind-affected, though, particularly at high altitude, becoming densified and hardened. 

Below 1800 m on N facing slopes and 2100 on S facing ones, spring conditions are now in place, with the snow melting and humidifying in the sun and refreezing overnight. With the warmer predicted temperatures and not so much overnight refreeze, the slopes will start warming up and humidifying earlier in the day (see link to tips on smooth spring skiing below!).

Snow depths are good at higher altitudes, with over 2 m above 2000 m and over 1 m above 1700 m.

Snow Stability

With the warm temperatures, the avalanche danger ratings are often increasing in the afternoons from a 2 to a 3, as the snow warms up and humidifies in the sun, increasing the frequency of natural purges, especially below 2700/3000 m. The weight of one or more skiers, etc, passing by could also trigger one of these. These slides may sometimes be large, involving the full-depth of snowpack. The sunny E to S to SW facing slopes are particularly in question.

There are also some surface and full-depth windslab around which we need to look out for, particularly on the steep cold NW to NE facing slopes and high leeward slopes. See the avalanche bulletins on the link below for more precise detail.

See our 'HAT Advice' for the danger ratings' definitions:  http://www.henrysavalanchetalk.com/avalanche-forecasts-danger-rating.

 

Tip of the Week

Check out our tips on how to enjoy smooth spriing skiing off-piste on this link! http://www.henrysavalanchetalk.com/ski-smooth-tips-spring-skiing-piste


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