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MOUNTAIN CONDITIONS 15/01/2021

This was a week of mixed weather in the valley and the northern alps generally. The weather fronts from the NE have brought a lot of snow, with wind at altitude and a temporary re-warming, (giving some rain in the mid mountain.)

This has resulted in 50cm of new snow at the valley floor and 80cm to 1m at 2000m.

As one can imagine, the snowpack is particularly unstable. There is a high avalanche risk (4) which will remain for the weekend.   The avalanches could be impressive.

There is likely to be many people about, (especially tomorrow, Saturday, with a return of sunshine to the mountains.)  Nonetheless, caution is needed over the next days.

There will be numerous  PIDA* (avalanches set off by the pisteurs) on Saturday (lire l'info spéciale). Please, therefore, avoid these sectors at the times indicated.

Ski tourers should not go wherever.  Possible areas are at Les Houches, (Prarion), or where the slopes are less exposed ( < 30º) e.g.  Aiguillette des Posettes, there and back, chalets de Loriaz by the forest track, chalets de Chailloux, Tour des Ayères.

On foot it is best to keep to the signposted routes and to take snowshoes : e.g.  Granges loop (Vallorcine), Tines loop  (Chamonix), Bossons Glacier loop (Chamonix), Cerfs loop (Les Houches), Lac Vert loop (Servoz) and Barmus loop (Servoz). 

In general, the ice conditions are good but be aware of the avalanche danger, (on the approach and from the slopes above).  On Saturday morning the Argentiere true left bank is to be avoided due to PIDA. (setting off avalanches).

*PIDA (plan d'intervention de déclenchements des avalanches)