Wind, snow and cold temps keep avalanche danger up
February 3, 2008
SUMMIT COUNTY ” A snowmobiler killed by an avalanche in the Flat Tops area Feb. 1 was the sixth avalanche death of the season in Colorado, equaling the historic average annual total. A persistent snowy pattern across the state has kept the risk of triggered avalanches high for the past several months. Avalanche experts are urging continued caution for backcountry travelers.
An observer near Arapahoe Basin noted reactive slabs in the area, with cracks shooting 75 feet, showing the tension and energy stored in the new windslabs.
The avalanche danger rating in the Vail and Summit zone remains at considerable on north, northeast, east, southeast, and south aspects near and above treeline.
Check the avalanche hotline at (970) 668-0600 or visit the avalanche center website at http://avalanche.state.co.us for updated forecasts and warnings before planning backcountry travel.