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.

Sat, Apr 30, 2022 at 6:11 AM
Issued by: Chris Bilbrey

Saturday

 

Sunday

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.
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.
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 chance of triggering a wet snow avalanche increases during the day as temperatures warm and are most concerning on steep, rocky slopes with about 8 inches of wet snow. Breezy afternoon wind may limit wet snow problems at upper elevations, but pay attention to rollerball activity as clues the surface is getting wet and losing cohesion. You can gauge how quickly conditions deteriorate by stepping onto the snow surface and assessing how deep you sink. Most slides will remain small, but a long-running isolated slide could gouge deeper, making a more significant pile at the bottom and be a challenge to escape. Start early and finish early to help avoid wet snow issues.

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On May 1, we will switch to Regional Backcountry Avalanche Forecasts. We will issue a single danger rating and written forecasts for Colorado's Northern Mountains, Central Mountains, and Southern Mountains. We will publish these products every day by 4:30 PM through May.

 

Avalanche Problem

 
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

 
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.

Avalanche Problem

 
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.

Weather Forecast for 11,000ft Issued Sat, Oct 1, 2022 at 1:09 PM by Mike Cooperstein Statewide Weather Forecast
 Saturday NightSundaySunday Night
Temperature (ºF)32 to 3740 to 4531 to 36
Wind Speed (mph)7 to 179 to 196 to 16
Wind DirectionSSWSSWSW
Sky CoverMostly CloudyMostly CloudyMostly Cloudy
Snow (in)000

Archived Forecasts

  • Select Forecast: Valid

 

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