The never-quite-winter of 2014-15

Special Announcement

The Anchorage Avalanche Center and Alaska Avalanche Information Center will be providing a FREE backcountry safety and avalanche awareness program hosted at Arctic Valley Ski Area this weekend: Sunday, March 29 from 10am-2pm.

Topics include general backcountry safety, winter backcountry preparedness, and avalanche awareness: recognizing avalanche terrain, red flags (obvious signs of unstable snow), and terrain traps; safe travel protocols and single burial recovery demo; basic snowpack stability assessment; the opportunity to practice with beacon, shovel, and probe; and more!

No prerequisites or specific equipment necessary. Just come prepared to be outside for a few hours, following a classroom session at the Arctic Valley lodge. If you have winter backcountry travel gear (skis, snowshoes, etc.) do bring it!

There will be free SWAG from Anchorage Avalanche Center sponsors!!

This program made possible to the general public, FREE of charge, by the Alaska Department of Public Safety.

Click here to register

Click here to learn more about the Arctic Valley ski area and for directions

We hope to see you there!

Due to limited snowfall this season and a thin snowpack, generally non-existent below 2500′, the Anchorage Avalanche Center will only be providing sporadic updates.  Best efforts will be made to provide updates as warranted by conditions (when the avalanche danger is increasing and/or elevated).  Quality observations have been hard to compile this season considering the lack of snow and difficult travel conditions.

Please continue to check the “advisory” and “observations” tabs above for the latest updates.

  • The Anchorage Avalanche Center concluded its second season of avalanche advisories and professional observations for the most frequently visited avalanche terrain of Chugach State Park with its April 26-27, 2014 weekend avalanche outlook.  The Anchorage Avalanche Center provided advisories for 58 days and professional observations for 42 days during the 2013-14 season.  The Anchorage Avalanche Center provided an avalanche outlook for every weekend from December 13, 2013 to April 27, 2014 plus additional advisories-outlooks and observations as much as possible and as conditions dictated due to increasing danger.  If you find this avalanche information program valuable and would like to see it continue for seasons to come, please make a tax-deductible donation to help the Anchorage Avalanche Center achieve sustainability.

Support your local grassroots avalanche center!

Despite close proximity to the state’s most densely populated region, heavy wintertime use, rapidly increasing recreation in avalanche terrain in recent years, and 16 avalanche related fatalities in the past few decades, Chugach State Park (CSP) lacked an organized avalanche information program prior to the development of the grassroots Anchorage Avalanche Center (provided through a partnership with the non-profit Alaska Avalanche Information Center).  CSP’s most popular, and Alaska’s most readily accessible, avalanche terrain of the Front Range and Eagle River areas comprise the Anchorage Avalanche Center’s core advisory zones.

Anchorage Avalanche Center mission: to increase the safety, awareness, and recreational enjoyment of winter backcountry enthusiasts visiting the avalanche terrain of Anchorage’s backyard mountain playground (Chugach State Park) through an avalanche advisory program, forum for public snow-avalanche observations, and winter backcountry education. 

Anchorage Avalanche Center vision: comprehensive avalanche information and education for backcountry recreation in Chugach State Park.

ISSW accidents poster 1
Learn more about the Anchorage Avalanche Center effort:

Piloting a backcountry avalanche advisory program for Alaska’s most readily accessible avalanche terrain: The Front Range and Eagle River area Chugach (eight page overview presented at the 2014 International Snow Science Workshop)

Piloting an avalanche advisory program for public recreation in the Front Range and Eagle River Area Chugach Mountains: Strategy, challenges, and viability (88 page full report)