CALGARY (660 NEWS) — Avalanche warnings may have expired for both Kananaskis and The Purcell but there is still a risk of triggering a snowslide if you plan to head to the backcountry.
As per Avalanche Canada’s website, K-Country received 15-20 cm of new snow in the past 36 hours, helping to cover some of the avalanche debris.
The Purcell has also received its fair share, being hit with 10-15 cm of snow since January 1. The alpine has also been hammered by wind creating wind slabs around the treeline.
“The main problem to watch out for is wind slabs, where the wind has loaded the snow in specific features,” Avalanche Canada Forecaster Ari Hannah said.
Avalanche Canada is keeping its eyes on the South Rockies as slabs up to 20 cm deep have been found in the alpine and treeline.
“A bit of snow and strong winds are in the forecast for the South Rockies on Saturday resulting in avalanche danger in upper elevations,” added Hannah.
In the Banff region, Environment Canada forecasts 2 to 4 cm of snow, with Parks Canada warning about potential dangers on certain trails.
“Visitor safety is obviously of major importance for Parks Canada, but it’s a bit of a shared responsibility and people need to arm themselves with knowledge by taking avalanche skills training courses and travelling with experienced partners,” Lisa Paulson, a visitor safety specialist with Parks Canada said.
At the beginning of trailheads, there are education signs that show the terrain ahead and what areas are exposed to avalanche danger.
Anyone who is heading out to the backcountry is being urged to check Avalanche Canada’s website and have the proper gear; such as a transceiver, snow shovel, and probe.
While driving in the Rockies make sure to have extra clothes and blankets along with a safety kit in case of changing weather conditions.