Hakuba Snow Report January 31st

The good news is the rain that was hammering down early this morning has stopped but it doesn’t make for an inspiring weekend on the slopes. Snow from 1200m up but unsure as to how good the snow is up there…we’ll let you be the judges of that. 5 degrees in the valley right now and looks like it might warm up some more. Yahoo have been spot on the weather though and they’re forecasting cooling temperatures overnight and snow from this evening which may make things better tomorrow. No escape from it today as travel in the backcountry is not recommended…

Snow Stabiliy Information

The heavy rains in the valley up to 1200 m and the heavy new snow above that are putting immense amounts of pressure on the mountain snow pack. There is definitely a higher probability of avalanches propagating from the Dec 23rd rain crust or multiple sun crusts on the solar aspects.
The rain has created a very unstable snow pack. Stay out of the Hakuba back country as slides could be possible.

Rapid increase of weight on snow pack
Increased snowfall adding load to buried week layer
Steadily increasing air temperature
Cornice fall
Radiative cooling of snow surface causing low density snow and frost at surface
rapid settlement of surface snow causing load on buried weak layers
Extreme radiation and warming of southern exposures
Warming of surface snow causing instability in surface and near surface layers
Solar radiated cornices becoming weak with direct solar radiation.
Use caution if crossing solar radiated slopes.
Increased caution advised around rocky outcroppings‚ cliffs and well spaced trees in start zones.
Due caution on cross loaded slopes
Surface hoar frost created overnight
Poor bonding at or around buried crust
Facet layer around buried crust
Due caution in steep and convex terrain

Danger level 4 : High

Natural and human triggered avalanches likely.

Danger level ratings are set for conditions at tree line
and may vary from below tree line and High Alpine areas.
Use this information as a guideline only.