Hakuba Snow Report March 7th

Fairly cold at altitude due to some strong gusts from the North-West but out of the wind the sun has warmed up the resort so depending where you are there’s a mix of slushy soft stuff and icy rain-wash…and plenty of people out this weekend making the most of it. There was a little bit of snow overnight but nothing noticeable…but with blue skies this weekend could be a lot worse. Clear tomorrow morning clouding over in the PM…


The powder has come and gone and now we are left with rain soaked past storm snow over the February 26th crust. This rain along with below zero temperatures and strong winds at Friday midnight will no doubt create another very strong rain crust. That is forecasted to to have new snow overtop come midday Saturday.

The past melt freeze crusts should not be forgotten too soon as all this new snow and rain could provide just enough weight to produce avalanches from the old crust / faceted interfaces. There is the possibility for step downs to older layers If slides in the new snow cause extra pressure on the weak faceted interfaces around the crusts. This new snow will be putting extra weight on the multiple faceted rain crusts and with the addition of wind loaded snow combined with possible mid day solar radiation there is still the chance that slabs down to past melt freeze crusts may propagate from shallow points neer ridges and around rocks and trees on solar aspects.

Travel Advisory:

Avoid solar radiated start zones especially around rocks in steep avalanche terrain.

Avoid steep convex‚ rocky and sparsely treed slopes especially on lee aspects. Expect to trigger avalanches in lee loaded avalanche terrain and from cornices.

Avalanche Hazard Rating:

Below Tree Line: Moderate
Tree Line: Considerable
Alpine: Considerable

Increased snowfall adding load to buried weak layer
Rapid settlement of surface snow causing load on buried weak 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.
Development of cornices in lee slopes
Lee side loading
Due caution on cross loaded slopes
Poor bonding at or around buried crust
Facet layer around buried crust
Wide propagation due to wind slab
Stay away from steep and convex terrain

Danger level 3 : Considerable

Natural avalanches possible. Human triggered avalanches probable.

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.

Current snow depth Goryu:
220 cm at 1800 masl
105 cm at the base
Temperature bottom 8 degrees C (800m asl)
Temperature top 3 degrees C (1500 asl)
Weather condition Bluebird
Wind condition Gusting NW’s
Visibility Excellent
Lift operation All resorts are open…check with resorts for details.