Avalanche Dangers Present in Boise National Forest


This avalanche was skier-triggered on Dec. 21, 2014 near Mores Creek Summit. - BOISE NATIONAL FOREST
  • Boise National Forest
  • This avalanche was skier-triggered on Dec. 21, 2014 near Mores Creek Summit.
The mountains of the Boise National Forest are not so stable today as snow falls and weather warms. According representatives of the Boise National Forest, backcountry skiers and snowmobilers are warned to use caution over the next few days and carry avalanche rescue gear when traveling on or near steep slopes.

The warning comes after remote SNOTEL weather stations across the forest report heavy, wet snow with up to two inches of water equivalent in over a foot of snow from Sunday night's storm.

The Payette Avalanche Center is calling the the avalanche hazard considerable today on all slopes over 30 degrees. 

"Heavy snowfall, winds gusting over 25 mph and warming temperatures added a lot of new weight on top of a variety of old snow surfaces including ice crusts and surface hoar," wrote a representative of the Payette Avalanche Center advisory for Jan. 5. "Ski and ride low angle slopes today or utilize inbounds terrain at local ski resorts to get your fresh snow fix."

David Olson, of the Boise National Forest, said in a news release that it takes several days for the avalanche risk to dissipate as new snow settles and bonds with existing snowpack.

"Although the Payette Avalanche Center does not forecast specifically for the Boise National Forest, their updates relate to snow conditions within the forest," he added.

The Sawtooth Avalanche Center is also reporting considerable avalanche danger for the Sawtooth National Forest. The rating scale goes from low to moderate to considerable to high to extreme.