Southern Colorado Avalanche Report & Forecast

The backcountry steeps of the South San Juan Mountains surrounding Durango are ideal for avalanches. Anyone heading into the backcountry around Durango should understand the risks, and be well educated in Avalanche safety. You should have the proper gear and training to not only survive an avalanche, but hopefully avoid getting caught in an avalanche in the first place.

If you don’t fall into the ‘ready’ category, you can still enjoy our local ski resorts, sledding hills or some gentle cross country skiing or snowshoeing.

The following Durango Avalanche report is published daily by the awesome folks at the Colorado Avalanche Information Center where you can find a full report for Southern Colorado, as well as the other avalanche zones of Colorado.

Fri, Apr 30, 2021 at 6:58 AM
Issued by: Chris Bilbrey

Friday

 

Saturday

Moderate (2) Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully.  Moderate (2) Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully.
Moderate (2) Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully.  Moderate (2) Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully.
Low (1) Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.  Low (1) Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.
  Danger Scale

  • No Rating
  • 1
    Low
  • 2
    Moderate
  • 3
    Considerable
  • 4
    High
  • 5
    Extreme

Summary

The avalanche danger increases as the snow surface warms through the day. Steep, east through south to west-facing slopes are likely to warm first, but the warmth and intense sun may affect shady slopes at upper elevations. If you observe rollerballs, wet snow shedding from steep, rocky terrain or you sink past boot tops head for colder snow or exit avalanche terrain completely. 

Slopes that appear firm and frozen in the morning can soften quicker than you might expect. Wet snow avalanches typically start small but can pick up momentum and take you for a nasty ride. Avoid traveling above consequential terrain or below sagging cornices during peak heating and if you observe wet snow activity.

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The CAIC will transition to regional products this afternoon (April 30). Regional backcountry forecasts are issued at 4:30 PM with avalanche danger ratings for the following day.

 

 

 

 

Avalanche Problem

 
problem icon
N
S
E
W
NW
NE
SE
SW
Above Treeline
Near Treeline
Below Treeline
Certain
Very Likely
Likely
Possible
Unlikely
Historic
Very Large
Large
Small
Avalanche Character Aspect/Elevation Likelihood Size

What You Need to Know About These Avalanches


Loose Wet avalanches occur when water is running through the snowpack, and release at or below the trigger point. Avoid very steep slopes and terrain traps such as cliffs, gullies, or tree wells. Exit avalanche terrain when you see pinwheels, roller balls, a slushy surface, or during rain-on-snow events.

Avalanche Problem

 
problem icon
N
S
E
W
NW
NE
SE
SW
Above Treeline
Near Treeline
Below Treeline
Certain
Very Likely
Likely
Possible
Unlikely
Historic
Very Large
Large
Small
Avalanche Character Aspect/Elevation Likelihood Size

What You Need to Know About These Avalanches


Loose Wet avalanches occur when water is running through the snowpack, and release at or below the trigger point. Avoid very steep slopes and terrain traps such as cliffs, gullies, or tree wells. Exit avalanche terrain when you see pinwheels, roller balls, a slushy surface, or during rain-on-snow events.

Avalanche Problem

 
problem icon
N
S
E
W
NW
NE
SE
SW
Above Treeline
Near Treeline
Below Treeline
Certain
Very Likely
Likely
Possible
Unlikely
Historic
Very Large
Large
Small
Avalanche Character Aspect/Elevation Likelihood Size

What You Need to Know About These Avalanches


Persistent Slab avalanches can be triggered days to weeks after the last storm. They often propagate across and beyond terrain features that would otherwise confine Wind and Storm Slab avalanches. In some cases they can be triggered remotely, from low-angle terrain or adjacent slopes. Give yourself a wide safety buffer to address the uncertainty.

Weather Forecast for 11,000ft Issued Sat, May 1, 2021 at 2:33 PM by Mike Cooperstein Statewide Weather Forecast
 Friday NightSaturdaySaturday Night
Temperature (ºF)------
Wind Speed (mph)------
Wind Direction------
Sky CoverOvercastOvercastOvercast
Snow (in)------

Archived Forecasts

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