Lake Louise Area
The ACMG Training and Assessment Program just completed a Ski Guide Exam based in Lake Louise April 15-23. Groups did the following trips:
-Observation Sub Peak and North Glacier
-Cirque Peak, North Couloir and North Glacier
-Mt Victoria / Collier Col
-Overnight at Balfour Hut via Vulture Glacier
The report from the other exam group summed things up well. In addition to what Kevin said we would add that the coverage on the glaciers in these areas is generally pretty good with depths in the 250-300cm range in most places.
We also directly observed a few avalanche events worth mentioning:
On April 16 one exam group directly observed a close call involving a recreational party of two skinning up to the Cirque Peak Col at 2900m. They triggered a size 1.5 windslab on a SE asp which ran over a large cliff with high consequence.
On April 19, during the most recent storm one group triggered a small storm slab while descending the South Ridge of Observation Sub Peak on a short slope. That remote triggered a cornice about 20m away. Though the visbility was poor we suspect the cornice fall triggered a size ~2.5 slab in the adjacent bowl.
On April 20 one of the groups remote triggered a size 2 storm slab from 10m away while on the Pumpkin Traverse. The slab was 30-100cm deep, 60m wide and only ran a short distance. The slab was confined to the immediate lee of an east facing ridge feature at 2500m.
All in all a good week in the Rockies with variable spring conditions and a mixed bag of weather. Terrain choices were conservative following the storm on April 19th.