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Avalanche Warning in effect for backcountry travelers in Vail area as more snow moves in

December 5, 2022, 10:02 am

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center has an Avalanche Warning in effect for the Vail area through Tuesday after a week of at-times heavy, wet snow and with more snow falling on Monday and in the forecast for the rest of the week:

“An Avalanche Warning is in effect for the Gore and Front Ranges,” the CAIC wrote. “Expect very dangerous conditions to develop by Monday morning and continue through Tuesday. You can expect to trigger a large and dangerous avalanche on, near, or below steep northerly and easterly-facing slopes at all elevations. Dense slabs of recently fallen snow rest precariously above fragile weak layers near the ground. Numerous people have triggered and been caught in avalanches this weekend. Conditions will grow more dangerous Monday and Tuesday. We recommend that you do not travel in or near avalanche terrain.”

Vail and Beaver Creek ski areas should be opening more in-bounds terrain this week ahead of the holiday crowds coming in later in the month.

Now that the Birds of Prey World Cup races are in the rearview, Beaver Creek should be able to add a significant amount of skiable terrain. Beaver Creek on Monday was about 18% open, with 35 available trails, after receiving more than 6 feet of snow so far this season.

In Vail, the countdown to the Back Bowls opening is officially on. As of Monday morning, Vail has received more than seven feet of snow so far this season and is currently offering more than 100 trails and nearly 40% of its available terrain.

More snow is in the forecast for this week.

“This week will bring new snow to most mountains on many days, but it’ll be a week of nuances as only certain mountains will be favored for deeper snow on certain days,” Opensnow.com meteorologist Joel Gratz wrote Monday. “Snowfall through Thursday could be 8-24 inches across the state. The next chance for a storm will then be later in the weekend through early the following week (Dec 11-13) with an active pattern continuing into mid-December.”

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