Parks Canada warns of high risk of avalanches through Glacier National Park
Parks Canada is warning the public about a high avalanche risk in Glacier National Park and say explosives are being used to mitigate problems. (Parks Canada)
CALGARY -- Officials are warning the public about a high avalanche risk in Glacier National Park, saying large portions of the park have been closed as crew members will be using explosives to clear problem areas.
Parks Canada issued a bulletin on Tuesday, after 20 centimetres of new snow fell in the area overnight, leading to "very dangerous avalanche conditions" in the alpine regions and considerable risks in the treeline and below-treeline areas.
As a result of the advisory, officials say travel through avalanche terrain in the alpine region is not recommended as natural avalanches and human-triggered avalanches are likely to occur.
Explosives are being used for avalanche control, but the advisory also says forecasted high winds may also trigger storm slabs.
According to Avalanche Canada, a storm slab is where one or more layers of snow collect into a slab above a weaker layer. It is one of eight avalanche problems identified in avalanche forecasts.
"The two main interfaces to watch for are the storm slab interface down 30cm+ and the Nov 23rd surface hoar/crust buried 40-60cm. Multiple buried crusts exist lower in the snowpack, but recent profiles are showing no significant shears on stability tests," the advisory reads.
A Winter Permit program is also in place to allow backcountry users conditional access into the closed areas when avalanche control measures are not planned.
The closure is expected to remain in place until Wednesday.