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WHAT A FAB WEEK
Just had one of the best weeks of the season a foot of powder and then wonderful sunny days and relatively quiet pistes with very few queues.Every single run is open in the 3 Valleys including the Grand Couloir
Missed this one from Rich of Ski Magic in the aftermath of those great days at the beginning of the week – bright sun, cloudless deep blue skies and powder (between the avalanche debris) – Go Hard son…
Sun is out once again this morning after a wet day yesterday – raining in resort but pistes still in near perfect condition. Three Valleys posting 2 out of 5 off piste avalanche risk this morning. But as Henry says below – there’s a lot more to it than that…
Courtesy of the excellent Henry’s Avalanche Talk
“The last 7 days have been characterised by a series of modest snowfalls with some sunshine and mildish weather in between. As a result, the recorded snow depths high up have increased by 20-40cm.
This has produced a great improvement compared to the wind packed sun crusted conditions we were experiencing last Tuesday and Wednesday.
The risk is that slabs that were formed when we had strong Foehn winds were covered by more snow early last week and could therefore create some medium size avalanches. The risks of triggering these avalanches are bigger around ridges and convexities.
Reports from high up (above 2750) include references to bottomless powder. Reports from below 2100m suggest the snow is humidified or even crusted a bit. South facing steeper slopes that had crusted in the sun before do not have enough new snow on them, so you can ski them, but you will hit the old crusted layer quite often.
The good news is the base is quite stabilised compared to last season, there is no widespread weak layer of depth hoar, but caution is still required.
The are two recurring themes this season. The situation is constantly complicated by the wind. Yet again we have had snow falling with wind from the south east and then followed by wind from the west. This means you have to really observe where the wind has blown the snow and where any wind slab exists.
Also it has often been the case, that the risk level in the avalanche bulletin is a forecast and not always what the guides find when they get out there. This week some areas reported a risk level 4 on Tuesday and then a risk level 3 today. Then the official position for tomorrow is risk level 2. However reports from Tuesday say that it was not a risk level 4. There was little sign of natural avalanche activity.
The forecast is for a large high pressure to come in a re create springlike conditions with mild sunny afternoons and a good refreeze each night. So the best off piste will be North East to West and high. South East to SW will be sun affected. The February sun may well not be strong enough to create a true “spring snow”.
The long term models suggest more unsettled weather from 15th February (we shall see?) “
Quick mention for these guys – some great stuff, more dance orientated, they can really play – catch ’em, while you can…
Has been dumping since about 11am. Radio says to expect between 10-30cm (fairly precise!) clearing tonight. Sunny tomorrow!
Rich Ski Magic
Snow is sooooooo good
Powder day on Saturday followed by creamy perfectly pisted runs in the sunshine on Sunday. Wind got up to close some top chairs around midday but La Tania was sheltered from it all – more snow on the way….
A good 10cm of fresh at resort level overnight, more higher up. Everything all white again. Lift opening delayed for 30 mins this morning, hence the group of powder hungry dogs salivating above. . . . Go Hard. . . .