New Zealand Mountan Safety Council

Tongariro

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Issued at 26/09/2016 2:35pm. Valid till 27/09/2016 6pm

Tongariro

Mountain
Current avalanche advisory
High Alpine

Above 2000 meters

Alpine

1000 to 2000 meters

Sub Alpine

Below 1000 meters

Avalanche Danger Scale
Avalanche Danger Scale
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Primary Avalanche Danger

Dangerous Aspects
high
Danger Rose
3
Highest Danger Rating
Likelihood
indicator
gauge
Certain
Likely
Unlikely
Size
indicator
gauge
Largest
Small
Trend
indicator
gauge
Increasing
No change
Decreasing
Time of day
clock
Time of day
All day
Alpine level
High Alpine: Above 2000m
Alpine: 1000 to 2000m
Low Alpine: Below 1000m
Description:
The danger rating has increased to CONSIDERABLE for storm slab up to size 2 between 2000m and 2400m on aspects facing North through Northwest, West, Southwest and South. The current storm slab is very sensitive to light loads, expect natural avalanches and easily triggered results. Be very wary when in terrain with any consequence ie a confined gully, terrain trap or cliff. The hazard is expected to increase over the next 24hrs and into the coming days. Poor weather conditions and near zero visibility will make snow assessment and travel very difficult.

Secondary Avalanche Danger

Dangerous Aspects
high
Danger Rose
3
Highest Danger Rating
Likelihood
indicator
gauge
Certain
Likely
Unlikely
Size
indicator
gauge
Largest
Small
Trend
indicator
gauge
Increasing
No change
Decreasing
Time of day
clock
Time of day
All day
Alpine level
High Alpine: Above 2000m
Alpine: 1000 to 2000m
Low Alpine: Below 1000m
Description:
The danger rating is CONSIDERABLE for Loose Wet avalanche activity below 2100m and MODERATE above up to 2400m on all aspects. Continued warm temperatures, rain and no overnight freeze means the hazard still exists and will remain for the next few days. This is especially evident on steep unsupported slopes, be wary when entering steep terrain when there is obvious deep boot and ski penetration as this is a sure sign the slope has lost stability. Keep a look out for roller balling and recent natural avalanches. Again poor weather coupled with poor visibility will make route finding and slope assessment very difficult.

Tertiary Avalanche Danger

Dangerous Aspects
high
Danger Rose
2
Highest Danger Rating
Likelihood
indicator
gauge
Certain
Likely
Unlikely
Size
indicator
gauge
Largest
Small
Trend
indicator
gauge
Increasing
No change
Decreasing
Time of day
clock
Time of day
All day
Alpine level
High Alpine: Above 2000m
Alpine: 1000 to 2000m
Low Alpine: Below 1000m
Description:
The danger rating has increased to MODERATE for Wind Slab above 2400m on aspects facing North through Northwest, West, Southwest and South. This is expected to have formed with higher winds at upper elevations with the slab sitting on a frozen melt freeze crust. The hazard will increase over the coming days. We have very limited observations at this elevation so further assessment needs to be carried out.

Recent Avalanche Activity

Recent Avalanche Activity
Ski patrol at Whakapapa have triggered a size 1.5 storm slab ski cutting this morning, this was on a 38 degree slope on a Northern aspect at 2100m.

Current Snowpack Conditions

Current Snowpack Conditions
Up to 30cm of new snow has accumulated forming storm slab, this has fallen with winds form the East loading multiple aspects above 2000m. The storm slab is reactive to a single skier and roller balling suggests natural activity is likely. New loading fell warm and wet, is on top of melt freeze slush and has bonded poorly. Below 2000m the snowpack is rotten and isothermic and continues to be affected by warm temperatures and continued rain. Current conditions make for particularly uncomfortable backcountry skiing with a rain snow mix and poor visibility, take the time to wax you gear and have a coffee in town.

Mountain Weather

Mountain Weather
Occasion rain falling as snow above 2000m, strong to gale Easterly winds. The next 72hrs is forecast to be much of the same with snow on the upper slopes and rain below with gale Easterlies trending Northeast.


MetService
For more information go to: http://www.metservice.com/mountain/index

Forecast by Dave Wright

Avalanche Forecast Regions:
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Mountainf Safety Council websiteAdventure Smart websiteNew Zealand Avalanche Center