Good morning, this is Logan King with the West Central Montana Avalanche Center’s weather update for January 5th, 2018. This danger rating does not apply to operating ski areas, expires at midnight tonight and is the sole responsibility of the U.S. Forest Service.

Weather and Snowpack

Mountain temperatures across West Central Montana are in the low 30’s this morning with many locations already above freezing. Precipitation has been minimal with a few snotels showing and addition of .1-.2 inches of SWE. Winds at Point 6 are 17 mph gusting to 24 mph from the W. Further south at Deer Mountain, winds are 7 mph gusting to 12 mph from the SSW. Weather conditions will be similar to yesterday until moisture returns to the region late today. The snow level is expected to be fairly high through Saturday morning. 

Conditions have not changed much over the last few days and the main avalanche concerns continue to be wind slabs and deep persistent slabs. Wind slab activity continues across the region above 6,500 feet. Deep persistent slabs are hard to trigger but will be high consequence events. Carefully evaluate terrain to identify areas of wind loading and potential trigger zones for deep persistent avalanches.

If you are out in the backcountry, please send us your observation, these are very helpful in producing the advisory. The next advisory will be issued tomorrow January 6th, 2018.

Ski and ride safe.