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Hey guys, what are the good options for bc skiing at the moment in the Pemby area? I have not been out there this season yet. I only got in two days of touring so far cause it has been so shitty but was hoping to get out this week.


What experience have people had with the snowpack so far? What looks promising?


I am really hoping that the current snow settles out into a nice base so the season can start for real...


Thanks, Jan

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Special Message: Professionals in the backcountry are saying they've never seen anything like this before and it's feeling spooky out there. Be extremely careful right now. This condition is likely to persist for some time.

Travel Advisory Issued: Sat, Dec 27 Next Scheduled Update: Sun, Dec 28

Storm snow amounts and weight on old weak layers are at or near critical. The snowpack is primed to give you a nasty surprise if you treat it like a normal west coast season right now. It may not look that bad to the untrained eye, but the pros are getting nervous and that means it's a good time to consider waiting this one out. It's hard to assess exactly where or when avalanches will be triggered by the incrementally increasing load. The key to coming home in one piece is adjusting expectations and picking appropriate terrain. When it's snowing and blowing I suggest staying out of avalanche terrain, including avoiding valley bottom runout zones. If it clears, don't be fooled by few overt signs of hazard. Unless a slope has actually avalanched, I'd stay on low angle, simple terrain for much longer than normal. Exercise restraint and patience-it's still early in the season and the mountains aren't going anywhere. This condition may take days or even weeks to settle out.

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When we were kids back in the 80's some of the neighborhood crew were making pipe bombs and blowing up dumpsters and the like. It did not take long to have the local police trying to piece fragments together to try and get finger prints. In the end, some fines were handed out and some community service was done by those juvenile delinquents. A lot has changed since then so I can only imagine it is a far more serious endeavor if one gets caught with any sort of bomb type device these days. Even back then it was still a serious felony.

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I don't have the law in front of me, but I believe one doesn't just throw bombs.


First off you have to have a license to possess explosives. Then I believe you should file a plan for use. This is no big deal if you run a mine since you can get an open ended permit. I think you might have a tough time getting an open ended permit for all of the Coast Range.


Now I have heard some funny stories about folks sneaking out with explosives and having a bit of fun.

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Lots of good ideas for home-made avi control for sure!


I skied up at Mt Cain over the last days. They did not open the upper lift, so there were some awesome powder turns to be had touring that. Other than that... The snow pack is complete shit. Extensive whoompfing, the lowest 20 cm is all sugar that pours out of that layer if you dig a pit. Then there is a faceted rain crust and multiple other layers. Really unusual for Vancouver Island...


What a season so far! Does not look like it's going to get better anytime soon either.


Cheers, Jan

Edited by JanD
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