Météo France warns of avalanche risk this weekend

French weather service Météo France has warned winter sports enthusiasts of the risk of avalanche in the Alps over the coming days due to a very active weather system currently traversing the region. With many ski resorts in the region now currently open the worry is that off piste skiers will be tempted by the fresh snow, particularly on Sunday and Monday with fine, sunny weather conditions.

Around 40 to 80cm of fresh snow is expected at 2000 meters altitude in the departments of the Northern Alps (two Savoies/Isere) and the Hautes Alpes. Fresh snow is also expected in Corsica and the Alpes Maritimes. The risk is of spontaneous avalanches as slopes purge with the fine weather on Sunday and skier triggered slabs. Although the base is currently good in places the fresh snow will fall on fragile layers and the strong winds of the last few days have formed accumulations and unstable snow slabs. Anyone planning a trip outside of marked and open ski pistes, be they are skier, snowboarder, snowshoer or climber should take extreme care with route planning. Meteo France has not yet started its full avalanche bulletin service for the winter season.

Site: http://www.meteo.fr

Posted by davidof on Friday, 05 December, 2008 at 02:35 PM

Fair to say skied on Tuesday at Bareges.  There was 30cms of fresh sat on a nice layer of ice!  Particularly on West and North West facing slopes.  Also some evidence of a couple of hefty slabs breaking away close to or on closed runs - notably Combe Laise.  Have had rain and snow since 2000m falling to 1200m today.

Hopefully, the Basques will use their common sense over the weekend....

Posted by Chopper on  Friday, 05 December, 2008  at 11:29 PM
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