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Avalanche bulletin through Monday, 18 January 2021

High avalanche danger will be encountered in some regions

Edition: Su. 17.01., 17:00 Next update: Mo. 18.01., 08:00 Validity

Avalanche bulletin through Monday, 18 January 2021

High avalanche danger will be encountered in some regions

Edition Su. 17.01., 17:00 Next update Mo. 18.01., 18:00 Validity

Avalanche bulletin through Monday, 18 January 2021

High avalanche danger will be encountered in some regions

Edition Su. 17.01., 17:00 Next update Mo. 18.01., 08:00 Validity

Avalanche bulletin through Monday, 18 January 2021

High avalanche danger will be encountered in some regions

Edition Su. 17.01., 17:00 Next update Mo. 18.01., 08:00 Validity

 
Level 2, moderate

Wind slabs

Avalanche prone locations
In all aspects above approximately 1400m.

In all aspects above approximately 1400m.

Danger description

The storm force foehn wind will transport the old snow. Avalanche prone wind slabs will form. These are clearly recognisable to the trained eye. The wind slabs are to be avoided in steep terrain.

see also snowpack and weather

Level 4, high

New snow, old snow

Avalanche prone locations
In all aspects above approximately 1600m.

In all aspects above approximately 1600m.

Danger description

The new snow and wind slabs of Sunday can be released by a single winter sport participant. Remotely triggered avalanches are to be expected. Whumpfing sounds and the formation of shooting cracks when stepping on the snowpack serve as an alarm indicating the danger. The snow sport conditions outside marked and open pistes are very dangerous. This also applies below the tree line.
Additionally avalanches can also be triggered in the old snowpack. During the night individual large and, in isolated cases, very large natural avalanches are possible. Exposed parts of transportation routes are endangered in isolated cases.

Gliding avalanches

In particular at low altitude gliding avalanches are possible. Areas with glide cracks are to be avoided.

see also snowpack and weather

Level 3, considerable

Old snow, wind slabs

Avalanche prone locations
In all aspects above approximately 1800m.

In all aspects above approximately 1800m.

Danger description

The new snow of the last few days is lying on top of a weakly bonded old snowpack. Single winter sport participants can release avalanches easily. These can be released in the weakly bonded old snow and reach large size. Remotely triggered avalanches are possible. Whumpfing sounds and the formation of shooting cracks when stepping on the snowpack can indicate the danger.
Fresh wind slabs are mostly small but prone to triggering. They are to be avoided in steep terrain.
Ski touring and other off-piste activities, including snowshoe hiking, call for extensive experience in the assessment of avalanche danger and restraint.

see also snowpack and weather

Level 3, considerable

Old snow, wind slabs

Avalanche prone locations
In all aspects above approximately 1800m.

In all aspects above approximately 1800m.

Danger description

The new snow and wind slabs of the last few days are poorly bonded with the old snowpack. As a consequence of a sometimes strong northerly wind, avalanche prone wind slabs will form as well. Single winter sport participants can release avalanches easily, including large ones. Individual natural avalanches are possible.
The snow sport conditions outside marked and open pistes are critical. Whumpfing sounds and the formation of shooting cracks when stepping on the snowpack serve as an alarm indicating the danger. Remotely triggered avalanches are possible. This also applies below the tree line.

see also snowpack and weather

Level 3, considerable

Wind slabs, old snow

Avalanche prone locations
In particular in west to north to southeast facing aspects above approximately 1200m.

In particular in west to north to southeast facing aspects above approximately 1200m.

Danger description

The new snow and wind slabs of the last few days are lying on the unfavourable surface of an old snowpack. Fresh wind slabs are mostly small but can in some cases be released easily. They are to be evaluated with care and prudence in steep terrain. Avalanches can additionally in isolated cases be released in deeper layers also. These can reach medium size in isolated cases.
Ski touring and snowshoe hiking call for experience in the assessment of avalanche danger.

see also snowpack and weather

Level 3, considerable

New snow, old snow

Avalanche prone locations
In all aspects above approximately 1400m.

In all aspects above approximately 1400m.

Danger description

The new snow and wind slabs of Sunday can be released by a single winter sport participant. Additionally avalanches can also be triggered in the old snowpack and reach large size. During the night natural avalanches are possible. Remotely triggered avalanches are to be expected. Whumpfing sounds and the formation of shooting cracks when stepping on the snowpack serve as an alarm indicating the danger.
The snow sport conditions outside marked and open pistes are very dangerous. This also applies below the tree line.

Gliding avalanches

In particular at low altitude gliding avalanches are possible. Areas with glide cracks are to be avoided.

see also snowpack and weather

High avalanche danger will be encountered in some regions
Edition: 17.1.2021, 17:00 / Next update: 18.1.2021, 18:00
Snowpack
The layers of fresh snow and snowdrifts of this last week, which in some places are quite deep, are settling and stabilising incrementally. They have been deposited on top of a strikingly weak layer at the interface to the old snow, extending to below the timberline. Wherever this weak layer is not deeply blanketed, avalanches can ongoingly be triggered by persons. Fracture cracks, whumpf noises and avalanche releases are all clear and present dangers of the weak snowpack layering. In the Valais and in isolated places of Grisons in particular, avalanches can also fracture inside the deeply embedded layers of the weak old snowpack down to ground level.
As a result of the fresh snowfall and northerly winds during the weekend, new snowdrift accumulations were generated at high altitudes. Particularly in the regions of the Valais and the northern flank of the Alps where snowfall was heaviest, these avalanche prone locations are wide-ranging.
Observed weather on Sunday, 17.01.2021
On Saturday night in the Valais and on the northern flank of the Alps there was snowfall registered down to low lying areas. During the course of the day on Sunday, skies were for the most part heavily overcast in the northern regions, accompanied by snowfall which intensified during the afternoon. In the southern regions it was relatively sunny as a result of the northerly winds.
Fresh snow
Between Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon, the following amounts of fresh snow were registered above approximately 800 m:
  • Lower Valais, northern flank of the Alps not including Urseren: 20 to 40 cm;
  • Jura region, Upper Valais not including Main Alpine Ridge, northern Grisons, northern Lower Engadine: 10 to 20 cm;
  • in the remaining regions of Switzerland only a few centimetres; south of the Main Alpine Ridge it remained dry.
Temperature
At midday at 2000 m, between -7 °C in the northern regions and -4 °C in the southern regions.
Wind
  • Winds in northern regions on Saturday night were blowing at moderate to strong velocity from westerly to southwesterly directions, in southern regions blowing at light to moderate strength;
  • during the daytime blowing from northerly directions, in the western regions initially at light to moderate strength, in the other regions of Switzerland at moderate to strong velocity.
Weather forecast through Monday, 18.01.2021
On Sunday night in the northern and the eastern regions, snowfall is anticipated down to low lying areas. On Monday morning in the northern and the eastern regions, skies will be overcast and an additional small amount of snowfall is expected. During the course of the day it will turn increasingly sunny in the mountains, starting in the west. In the Valais and in the Ticino it will be predominantly sunny.
Fresh snow
Between Sunday evening and Monday midday, the following amounts of fresh snow are anticipated above approximately 800 m:
  • northern flank of the Alps east of the Reuss: 20 to 30 cm, from place to place 40 cm;
  • northern flank of the Alps from the eastern Bernese Alps as far as the Reuss, northern Surselva, northern Grisons, northern Lower Engadine: 10 to 20 cm;
  • Jura region, remaining regions of the northern flank of the Alps, Valais, remaining parts of Grisons not including the southern valleys: maximum 10 cm;
  • on the southern flank of the Alps it will remain dry.
Temperature
At midday at 2000 m, between -9 °C in the northern regions and -5 °C in the southern regions.
Wind
  • On Sunday night: temporarily strong to storm-strength winds at high altitudes, in the southern regions intermittently strong northerly winds extending down into the valleys;
  • during the daytime on Monday: light to moderate-strength winds from westerly to northwesterly directions; in southern and eastern regions at high altitudes blowing at moderate to strong velocity from northwesterly directions.
Outlook through Wednesday, 20.01.2021
Tuesday
In the northern regions it will be partly sunny, in the southern regions predominantly so. As a result of strong westerly winds, additional snowdrift accumulations will be generated at high altitudes in the western and northern regions in particular. The zero-degree level is expected to ascend to nearly 2000 m. A southerly foehn wind will come up, presumably with the approach of evening. The danger of dry-snow avalanches is expected to diminish somewhat. For winter sports enthusiasts, the situation will remain treacherous in outlying terrain away from secured ski slopes. In the northern regions the danger of gliding avalanches will increase particularly at low and intermediate altitudes.
Wednesday
In the northern regions it will be predominantly sunny accompanied by some cloudbanks. Temperatures are expected to rise in the northern regions as a result of strong to storm-velocity foehn wind. In the southern regions, skies will be bright to start with, but become increasingly overcast during the course of the day. The avalanche danger levels can increase somewhat in the northern regions. In the southern regions, avalanche danger levels are not expected to change significantly.
 

Your observations can improve the quality of the avalanche bulletin. We are very grateful for any reports and photos received.

Please report your observations of avalanches or alarm signs, or your estimation of the avalanche danger, or simply send us a picture illustrating the current situation. Your report from the field will be considered along with all the other information when we assess the avalanche danger. It is impossible, however, to reflect the exact content of each individual report in the avalanche bulletin.

The best way to file a report is by completing the interactive form on this page. If your report is to be used in the 5 pm avalanche bulletin, it should be submitted before 2:30 pm if possible. Reports received later will normally be given consideration in the next assessment.

Other reporting options:

High avalanche danger will be encountered in some regions
Edition: 17.1.2021, 17:00 / Next update: 18.1.2021, 18:00
Snowpack
The layers of fresh snow and snowdrifts of this last week, which in some places are quite deep, are settling and stabilising incrementally. They have been deposited on top of a strikingly weak layer at the interface to the old snow, extending to below the timberline. Wherever this weak layer is not deeply blanketed, avalanches can ongoingly be triggered by persons. Fracture cracks, whumpf noises and avalanche releases are all clear and present dangers of the weak snowpack layering. In the Valais and in isolated places of Grisons in particular, avalanches can also fracture inside the deeply embedded layers of the weak old snowpack down to ground level.
As a result of the fresh snowfall and northerly winds during the weekend, new snowdrift accumulations were generated at high altitudes. Particularly in the regions of the Valais and the northern flank of the Alps where snowfall was heaviest, these avalanche prone locations are wide-ranging.
Observed weather on Sunday, 17.01.2021
On Saturday night in the Valais and on the northern flank of the Alps there was snowfall registered down to low lying areas. During the course of the day on Sunday, skies were for the most part heavily overcast in the northern regions, accompanied by snowfall which intensified during the afternoon. In the southern regions it was relatively sunny as a result of the northerly winds.
Fresh snow
Between Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon, the following amounts of fresh snow were registered above approximately 800 m:
  • Lower Valais, northern flank of the Alps not including Urseren: 20 to 40 cm;
  • Jura region, Upper Valais not including Main Alpine Ridge, northern Grisons, northern Lower Engadine: 10 to 20 cm;
  • in the remaining regions of Switzerland only a few centimetres; south of the Main Alpine Ridge it remained dry.
Temperature
At midday at 2000 m, between -7 °C in the northern regions and -4 °C in the southern regions.
Wind
  • Winds in northern regions on Saturday night were blowing at moderate to strong velocity from westerly to southwesterly directions, in southern regions blowing at light to moderate strength;
  • during the daytime blowing from northerly directions, in the western regions initially at light to moderate strength, in the other regions of Switzerland at moderate to strong velocity.
Weather forecast through Monday, 18.01.2021
On Sunday night in the northern and the eastern regions, snowfall is anticipated down to low lying areas. On Monday morning in the northern and the eastern regions, skies will be overcast and an additional small amount of snowfall is expected. During the course of the day it will turn increasingly sunny in the mountains, starting in the west. In the Valais and in the Ticino it will be predominantly sunny.
Fresh snow
Between Sunday evening and Monday midday, the following amounts of fresh snow are anticipated above approximately 800 m:
  • northern flank of the Alps east of the Reuss: 20 to 30 cm, from place to place 40 cm;
  • northern flank of the Alps from the eastern Bernese Alps as far as the Reuss, northern Surselva, northern Grisons, northern Lower Engadine: 10 to 20 cm;
  • Jura region, remaining regions of the northern flank of the Alps, Valais, remaining parts of Grisons not including the southern valleys: maximum 10 cm;
  • on the southern flank of the Alps it will remain dry.
Temperature
At midday at 2000 m, between -9 °C in the northern regions and -5 °C in the southern regions.
Wind
  • On Sunday night: temporarily strong to storm-strength winds at high altitudes, in the southern regions intermittently strong northerly winds extending down into the valleys;
  • during the daytime on Monday: light to moderate-strength winds from westerly to northwesterly directions; in southern and eastern regions at high altitudes blowing at moderate to strong velocity from northwesterly directions.
Outlook through Wednesday, 20.01.2021
Tuesday
In the northern regions it will be partly sunny, in the southern regions predominantly so. As a result of strong westerly winds, additional snowdrift accumulations will be generated at high altitudes in the western and northern regions in particular. The zero-degree level is expected to ascend to nearly 2000 m. A southerly foehn wind will come up, presumably with the approach of evening. The danger of dry-snow avalanches is expected to diminish somewhat. For winter sports enthusiasts, the situation will remain treacherous in outlying terrain away from secured ski slopes. In the northern regions the danger of gliding avalanches will increase particularly at low and intermediate altitudes.
Wednesday
In the northern regions it will be predominantly sunny accompanied by some cloudbanks. Temperatures are expected to rise in the northern regions as a result of strong to storm-velocity foehn wind. In the southern regions, skies will be bright to start with, but become increasingly overcast during the course of the day. The avalanche danger levels can increase somewhat in the northern regions. In the southern regions, avalanche danger levels are not expected to change significantly.

Latest avalanche bulletins

 

Have you observed alarm signs or an avalanche?

Your observations can improve the quality of the avalanche bulletin. We are very grateful for any reports and photos received.

interactive Button 'submit your observation'

 

More information about observations

Please report your observations of avalanches or alarm signs, or your estimation of the avalanche danger, or simply send us a picture illustrating the current situation. Your report from the field will be considered along with all the other information when we assess the avalanche danger. It is impossible, however, to reflect the exact content of each individual report in the avalanche bulletin.

The best way to file a report is by completing the interactive form on this page. If your report is to be used in the 5 pm avalanche bulletin, it should be submitted before 2:30 pm if possible. Reports received later will normally be given consideration in the next assessment.

Other reporting options:

 

No avalanche bulletins are being published at the moment. Nevertheless, you should still stay up to date with the avalanche situation in the mountains, especially if there is fresh snow.

However, the SLF will, by way of exception, also issue avalanche bulletins in the summer in case of heavy snowfall. There are different ways you can be notified when these bulletins based on the snow situation are published:

  • by push alert on SLF's free White Risk mobile app: appearing in four languages (English, German, French and Italian), this can be downloaded from iTunes App Store (for iPhones) or Google Play Store (for Android);
  • by mobile text message (SMS): please send an SMS with the message START SLF SOMMER to the phone number 9234 – you can cancel this service at any time by sending an SMS with the message STOP SLF SOMMER; cost: CHF 0.20 per SMS;
    This SMS service will be discontinued on 31.12.2020. Please use the SLF free mobile app "White Risk".
  • via an RSS feed which informs you whenever an avalanche bulletin is published.

Depending on the snow and avalanche situation, the regular publication of avalanche bulletin recommences in November/December.

Latest avalanche bulletins

 

Have you observed alarm signs or an avalanche?

Your observations can improve the quality of the avalanche bulletin. We are very grateful for any reports and photos received.

interactive Button 'submit your observation'

 

More information about observations

Please report your observations of avalanches or alarm signs, or your estimation of the avalanche danger, or simply send us a picture illustrating the current situation. Your report from the field will be considered along with all the other information when we assess the avalanche danger. It is impossible, however, to reflect the exact content of each individual report in the avalanche bulletin.

The best way to file a report is by completing the interactive form on this page. If your report is to be used in the 5 pm avalanche bulletin, it should be submitted before 2:30 pm if possible. Reports received later will normally be given consideration in the next assessment.

Other reporting options:

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Snow maps

 
 
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Further information

Print versions of avalanche bulletin

Print-suitable avalanche bulletins, e.g. for a notice board.

 

Measured values

A bevy of data retrievable any time, filtered by station altitude.

Weekly report

An expert analysis of previous week’s avalanche situation.

Submit observation

Your observations can improve avalanche bulletin quality. Reports and photos gratefully accepted.

Destructive avalanches and avalanche accidents

Recent and older avalanche accidents incl. statistical analysis.

White Risk

The SLF free avalanche app. Avalanche bulletin, snow information and more for mobile devices.