With warmer temperatures in the forecast this weekend, it may seem like the perfect time to head out to the mountains and hit the slopes. but that warm-up has prompted a Special Avalanche Advisory for several regions in Alberta and B.C.
Parks Canada and Avalanche Canada issued the warning yesterday, stating that there's an elevated avalanche risk for recreational backcountry users.
As of 9 a.m. on Friday, January 21 Parks Canada reports indicate that many local areas are still at risk. Banff, Yoho, Kootenay and Little Yoho are all listed as a considerable avalanche risk in alpine and treeline areas and a moderate avalanche risk in the remaining terrains.
The increasing temperatures are expected to affect the snowpack on upper mountain terrain and contribute to destabilizing conditions.
Other areas affected by the special warning are North and South Columbias, Purcells, and an area within the Sea-to-Sky and South Coast Inland regions, from Squamish to Pemberton.
According to Parks Canada, this special warning will remain in effect through to the end of Monday, January 24. Avalanche Canada says that there have been some close calls reported in those regions, and they're urging people to be cautious or avoid the adjacent regions altogether.
You can find a detailed list of the latest avalanche warnings here.