CALGARY - An avalanche warning has been issued for a large area of the Rocky Mountains, including Kananaskis, Banff, Yoho, Kootenay and Jasper.
The warning is in effect until Sunday.
Officials with Parks Canada and Alberta Parks say that the snowpack in these areas is fragile, with a weak layer at the base and large amounts of snow on top.
They also say avalanche professionals have seen a number of unusually large snow slides in the past week with conditions said to be prime for human triggering.
Recreational backcountry users, with little or no avalanche training, are being asked to avoid the area, while those with experience are urged to travel on simple terrain such as small, low angle, well-supported features with no large steep slopes or cornices above.
An avalanche warning has also been issued for parts of British Columbia, including the backcountry in the South Columbia, Purcells, Kootenay-Boundary, South Rockies and Lizard Range and Flathead regions.
Steve Holeczi, visitor safety specialist with Parks Canada, suggests people should just avoid the backcountry.
“It’s a great time to go to the ski hill, but one of the user groups that we like to target is people that go to the ski hill, but maybe are considering going into the backcountry from the ski hill.”
“This weekend’s probably not a great time to be doing that.”
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