Large avalanche on Shuksan Arm @ Mt. Baker today, March 15th. photo: NWAC

A very large slide on Shuksan Arm just east of the Mt Baker Ski Area ran into Rumble Gulley mid-morning and overran the tree line buffer protecting the base of the Shuksan Arm Chair…depositing debris into the lower part of the run. 

This slide is reported as the largest ever witnessed in the area by the General Manager…who has been there for over 40 years and who is closing the area to prevent any accidents involving “sidecountry” exposure to the developing extreme danger.” - Northwest Weather & Avalanche Center (NWAC)

MT. BAKER’S CRAZY WEEK:

- 110 inches of snow in 6 days

- 8 trees across the highway CLOSED the road and the ski resort yesterday

 - HUGE avalanches coming down from the Shuksan Arm

- Warm temperatures have created major instability in the snowpack 

- Mt. Baker ski resort CLOSED today due to avalanche danger

Large avalanche on Shuksan Arm @ Mt. Baker today, March 15th. photo: NWAC

MT. BAKER SKI RESORT SPECIAL NOTICE TODAY:

“SPECIAL NOTICE: due to the warming temperatures and consequent significantly unstable snow conditions, MT. BAKER WILL BE CLOSED TODAY…” - mt. baker ski resort

110 INCHES OF SNOW IN 6 DAYS:

“Storm total snow amounts have become increasingly impressive as of early Thursday morning…with Mt Baker having received over 110 inches of snow in the past 6 days! “ – Northwest Weather & Avalanche Center (NWAC)

Tree carnage from large shuksan arm avalanche

AVALANCHE WARNING FROM NWAC:

Most of the snowfall has been with low freezing levels and relatively cold temperatures, however a period of brief warming and heavy snowfall Monday night and early Tuesday morning caused a widespread natural avalanche cycle in many areas. There have been several natural cycles during heavy loading over the past few days, mostly involving more shallow storm layer weaknesses. Avalanches releasing down to the crust from late last week have been explosive releases on control work such as a 4 foot slab at Crystal Mountain Tuesday and a 6+ foot sympathetic release from control at Mt Baker Ski Area.

More recently, avalanche control work in most Cascade west slope areas has produced very sensitive 1 to 2 ft slabs early to mid Thursday morning and increasingly easy and more widespread fracture propagation with each hour. A very large slide on Shuksan Arm just east of the Mt Baker Ski Area ran into Rumble Gulley mid-morning and overran the tree line buffer protecting the base of the Shuksan Arm Chair…depositing debris into the lower part of the run. This slide is reported as the largest ever witnessed in the area by the General Manager…who has been there for over 40 years and who is closing the area to prevent any accidents involving “sidecountry” exposure to the developing extreme danger. Due to very poor visibility, no estimates of the fracture depth are yet available.

TREES DOWN CLOSE MT. BAKER HIGHWAY:

At least 8 trees, ranging in diameter from 6-22 inches, fell across the Mt. Baker Highway causing the Washington Department of Transportation to close the highway yesterday.  Once the highway was closed, ski resort officials decided to close the ski resort as well.

The trees were laden with 12-18” of new snow and were unable to withstand the weight.  We all know how wet Mt. Baker snow is, don’t we?  Well, that snow caused some hell in the forests yesterday.

How many trees came down in the Mt. Baker area yesterday?  Hundreds?  Thousands?

The road was re-opened this morning, but the storm continues full force.

Watch out for those tree wells at Mt. Baker this week/weekend!  Baker is getting nailed.  

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19 Comments

  1. Miles Clark says:

    Whoa!

    Reply
  2. John Lemieux says:

    Tell me someone got a video of this thing moving

    Reply
  3. Eric Behn says:

    This is nuts, North West US/South West Can is so dangerous right now.

    Reply
  4. torn edge says:

    don’t think anyone will second guess the decision to close.

    Reply
  5. Baker blows says:

    I believe that’s a picture of last years big slide…

    Correct me if I’m wrong

    Reply
  6. Anonymous says:

    @ Baker blows

    Your right, that is Gunder’s pic from the slide last year

    Reply
  7. Kp says:

    Wish I hadn’t drove all the friggin way up there today but I can see why they had to close it. Shit sounded nuts out there. Chair 6 closed for two straight storm days. Lucky bastards.

    Reply
  8. Mr Extreme says:

    How tall is that Crown line 30 feet? FFFFFFFuck!

    Reply
  9. SLED2SHRED says:

    Rip it!

    Reply
  10. Kp says:

    John wells, is that you driving the van with mass. Plates? If so, you drive as bad as you ski. Fuck off you tool.

    Reply
  11. Squawlocal says:

    They totally just closed to save money cuz ski resorts are greedy

    Reply
  12. chaos1 says:

    RED *&#$ING LETTERS!!!

    Reply
  13. Anonymous says:

    so why’s the website say “normal midweek operations”?

    Reply
  14. kevin c says:

    Lies, it’s been raining all week

    Reply
  15. no video... says:

    …i dont believe it

    Reply

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