Since the weekend of December 29, the Alps have been under the influence of high pressure. This means a lot of sunshine. Due to the holiday crowds, most of the powder right next to the slopes has been tracked. Luckily the snowpack had some time to settle in recent days and the avalanche risk in large parts of the Alps is no higher than 2 on a scale of 5, or in words: a moderate avalanche danger. Sunny weather and moderate avalanche danger means ideal conditions to go deeper into the backcountry and to ride somewhat steeper lines. Stick your skins under your skis or split board and earn your own turns. The ideal start to 2020. In this article:
It's been sunny in the Alps for a few days. Due to inversion, clouds can get stuck in the valleys and where the sun has no influence it is cold and chilly. But once higher on the mountain or in the valleys where the sun can come, it is sunny and really mild for the time of the year. It is that the angle of the sun is so low, but otherwise you would think it is late February-early March. The low position of the sun ensures that its influence is limited and that there is still enough untracked and cold powder to be found in the backcountry. Ideal conditions for a nice tour and earn your turns. How beautiful that is on skis shows this video, for the boarders: check this video.
Until Friday it will be wonderful to go out for a nice tour. Nothing better to sweat out the slightly too much champagne and then to make a few delicious turns in cold smoke powder. The best way to descend is via east, north or west slopes. The sun has little effect on these exposittions (at this time of the year) and you will certainly find untrackedpowder there. Enjoy!
Our own model, just like some other models, is in favor of snow coming in this weekend at the Northern Alps, but I am not sure yet. So better hold your horses. It's not the time yet to start waxing, rescheduling appointments and looking for a spot. Just wait quietly. I will post a short update to this post tomorrow and keep you up to date in the coming days.
Although it is not yet 2020, I wish you all the best. That the powder may be with you and that you may find some beautiful lines.
See you in 2020, Morris