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Avalanche Canada extends Special Public Avalanche Warning for Purcells

In a media release Friday, Avalanche Canada is extending the Special Public Avalanche issued earlier this week and revising the regions involved.

Avalanche Canada said the warning will continue through the weekend but only for the Purcells and Kananaskis Country.

Avalanche Canada said forecasters remain concerned about the persistent weak layer that is now buried more than a metre deep in these regions with this weak layer is continuing to produce large avalanches that are easily triggered by the weight of a human or a snowmobile.

“We’ve been tracking this layer since we issued the warning on Dec 23,” explains James Floyer, forecast program supervisor for Avalanche Canada.

 “It seems to be settling down in a number of regions that were originally identified but it remains very active in the Purcells and Kananaskis Country.

“We are urging backcountry users in these areas to choose simple terrain or avoid avalanche terrain completely,” Floyer added.

Avalanche Canada warns all backcountry users and anyone recreating in avalanche terrain, including those going outside ski area boundaries, to always check the regional avalanche forecasts at www.avalanche.ca.

Everyone in a backcountry party needs the essential rescue gear—transceiver, probe and shovel—and the knowledge to use it. Ensure your party re-groups well away from avalanche slopes, including overhead hazard such as cornices.