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 / Sisters

Rapid temperature rise
Observation Date/Time:
Wed, Mar 25, 2020 - 10:00 AM
Three Sisters Area / 7000'
Report Type:
Snow Conditions   No Avalanche Activity  
Travel Mode:
Ski or Snowboard  

Written Report:
We spent much of the last week touring between Tam and the South Sister. We intended to move our camp to setup for attempts on the a Middle and North Sisters today, however upon waking and getting a good view of the North Face of Broken Top, it was an easy decision to bail out of our plans.

The wind loading was extremely obvious down to the lower benches of the face at ~7400', and the spindrift we witnessed during the day trended north east off the summit.

At our camp 1/2 mile south of Golden Lake, there was 10-12" of new snow from this storm, and the momentary views we got of the East face of the Middle and North Sisters showed a lot of new snow at elevation.

We observed no natural slide activity, but I imagine with the amount of sun we got on the way out, that likely changed later in the day.