ACMG Mountain Conditions Summary for the Rockies and Columbia Mountains issued May 17th, 2017

Close to 10 cm of new snow on my deck in Canmore this morning has done nothing for my "spring" feeling:) But, conditions were excellent in the Elevation Place climbing gym.

This last storm seemed to track through the south part of the Columbias and Rockies. Very little snow fell in Rogers Pass the past couple of days but at the Bugaboo Lodge they estimated around 20cm of snow just above lodge elevation. Seems likely that little or no snow fell at the Columbia Icefields, Jasper, and Lake Louise but there was a report of 43cm of snow on the Highwood Pass and some snow in the Waterton townsite.

Scrambling anywhere but the driest parts of the East slope of the Rockies and maybe Purcells will likely still involve snow covered avalanche terrain. Close to the divide of both ranges large avalanches are still a real possibility if we get some high temperatures in the alpine this weekend. Keep an eye on the temperatures and the sun effects if you are up in the big mountains. Cornice failures and rockfall will be with us for a long while yet in all the alpine rock climbing venues.

Valley bottom crags just need time to dry out and some mid elevation crags in the Bow Valley like Guide's Rock, Goat Mountain and Yamnuska are drying out quickly (and covered with ticks). Having said that Ha Ling and EEOR are currently plastered with snow and will need quiet a while for the new and old snow to clean off. In Jasper the word is that Ashler Ridge, Benson Ridge and Morro slabs are snow free.

Skiing could still be really good with some cool temps. Corn on the sunny sides and probably some shallow pow up high and North. Glacier travel with cool temps and clear skies would be great.

Have a fine long weekend and enjoy the fact that a drought is a long way off!

Larry Stanier
ACMG Mountain Guide

On The Map

These observations and opinions are those of the person who submitted them. The ACMG and its members take no responsibility for errors, omissions, or lapses in continuity. Conditions differ greatly over time and space due to the variable nature of mountain weather and terrain. Application of this information provides no guarantee of increased safety. Do not use the Mountain Conditions Report as the sole factor in planning trips or making decisions in the field.