Another storm rolls into Vail Valley, increasing backcountry slide danger

By Real Vail
Real AspenJanuary 27, 2012
A winter storm produced nearly a foot of new snow in Vail Thursday night and Friday morning and 6 inches new at Beaver Creek. It was still snowing lightly in Vail at 6 a.m. today.

Ski conditions will be excellent today at both Vail and Beaver Creek, but backcountry snow riders should proceed with extreme caution due to the highly unstable snowpack throughout much of Colorado's high country.

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC) has an avalanche watch in effect through noon today in the Vail area and Summit County.

Powder at Beaver Creek last weekend.
Cody Downard/Vail Resorts

"Periods of heavy snowfall and moderate to strong west and northwest winds Thursday night will combine to raise the avalanche danger to HIGH (Level 4) if the forecast verifies or snowfall amounts are exceeded," CAIC's website read Thursday night.

"The weak snowpack has still not recovered from the last round of loading that came over the weekend. Another round of heavy snowfall in less than a 12-hour window will likely produce another natural avalanche cycle for Friday." forecasts a fairly warm and dry weekend, followed by a smaller storm Monday.

Vail now has has 137 inches of total snowfall for the season and a 43-inch mid-mountain base. Twenty-seven of 31 lifts are operating, serving 162 of 193 trails and 3,273 of 5,289 skiable acres.

Beaver Creek now has 123 inches of total snowfall for the season and a 41-inch mid-mountain base. All 25 lifts are operating, serving 138 of 149 trails and 1,541 of 1,815 skiable acres.

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Snow Report

  24hr snow mid dpth snow cond.
A-Basin n/a n/a
Aspen n/a n/a closed
BC n/a n/a closed
Breckenridge n/a n/a closed
Buttermilk n/a n/a closed
Copper n/a n/a closed
Crest. Butte n/a n/a closed
Eldora n/a n/a closed
Heavenly n/a n/a closed
Highlands n/a n/a
Howelsen n/a n/a closed
Keystone n/a n/a closed
Kirkwood n/a n/a closed
Loveland n/a n/a
Monarch n/a n/a closed
Northstar n/a n/a closed
Powderhorn n/a n/a closed
Purgatory n/a n/a closed
Silverton n/a n/a closed
Ski Cooper n/a n/a closed
Ski Granby n/a n/a closed
Snowmass n/a n/a closed
Steamboat n/a n/a closed
Sunlight n/a n/a closed
Telluride n/a n/a closed
Vail n/a n/a closed
WinterPark n/a n/a closed
Wolf Creek n/a n/a closed
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