As of March 30th, COAC has suspended backcountry avalanche advisories and pro observations until further notice.

On March 23rd, Governor Brown of Oregon issued Stay at Home orders for the public regarding the COVID-19 outbreak. The directives are clear in that “to the maximum extent possible, individuals stay at home or in their place of residence.” On March 27th the Deschutes National Forest issued a closure of all developed recreation sites including trailheads and snoparks. COAC is committed to supporting our community, local emergency services, and agency partners and because of this we felt it important to cease operations as we all work together to minimize the impacts and spread of COVID-19.   

This decision was not taken lightly. Aside from the need to maintain congruency with the Governors' orders, there are inherent risks with backcountry activities in alpine environments and it’s important to consider unnecessary exposure to COAC forecasters, first responders, and local medical staff in light of the current situation.

We look forward to getting back into the mountains and providing you all with the tools to recreate safely in the backcountry. Until then we thank you for your continued support and wish all our mountain community the best of health and wellness.

Broken Top

Observation Date/Time:
Fri, Mar 20, 2020 - 3:41 PM
Phil Bowker
Report Type:
Snow Conditions  
Travel Mode:
Snowmobile   Ski or Snowboard  
Sky Conditions:
Scattered (3/8 - 4/8)
Wind Direction/Speed:
S / Light: 1-16 mph

Written Report:
Today I toured around Broken Top. I skied primarily south through north east aspects, seeing quite a variety of snow surfaces.
Around the base of broken top there is a widespread breakable crust of about 2-3cm (0.7 - 1") in thickness. In sheltered areas on north aspects I found some small patches of surface hoar.
On solar aspects there are isolated patches of sun crust and some evidence of small loose wet slides, lots of pin wheels could be seen on solar aspects in the bowl.
On more northern aspects under ridge tops old windslabs where found to be stable, patches of old storm snow could be found giving good skiing. Patches of wind affected snow could be found on all aspects I toured.
As I toured I saw no avalanches, there was no cracking or whumphing around my skis. I did see evidence of a small cornice collapse on a north aspect above Bend Glacier.

Above "No Name LaKe" at mid day winds where calm to light form the south, visibility was good with increasing clouds throughout the day. There was one or two snowflakes in the air. Air temp was 4c (39.2f).



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