Avalanche Canada has extended the inland region avalanche warning that was issued on Christmas Day to January 4.
The initial release warned backcountry users that snowfalls coupled with winds and warm temperatures placed a heavy load on a fragile snowpack, and although conditions were predicted to have calmed by December 30, Avalanche Canada is still advising locals and visitors to continue following the proper precautions when visiting the backcountry.
“We had expected the problem layer to calm down by now but it’s still easily triggered,” said Senior Avalanche Forecaster James Floyer. “We have had numerous reports of skiers and snowmobilers involved in avalanches.”
He went on to say, “Luckily there have been no fatalities, thanks to good self-rescue by the parties involved.”
The avalanche warning is in effect for the North Rockies, Cariboos, North Columbia, South Columbia, Kootenay-Boundary, Purcells, South Rockies, Lizard and Flathead, and South Coast Inland regions.
Backcountry users are being advised to stay on simple, low-angle terrain and to avoid large, steep slopes while minimizing any exposure to overhead hazards. Avalanche Canada is also advising backcountry users to avoid travelling while other users are on slopes above and to re-group in safe zones away from avalanche run-outs until conditions improve.
For an up to date avalanche forecast, visit www.avalanche.ca.