In some Salzburg regions, the avalanche warning level has been raised to four. There is a high risk of avalanches in the Steinernes Meer, the Tennengebirge or the Hochkönig. Experts warn against risky ski tours. In most others, avalanche warning level three applies.
The avalanche situation worsened significantly at the weekend. The regions of the northern Alps with a lot of fresh snow are particularly affected. The background is that it has been cold in the past few days, the temperatures are slowly rising with a warm front, says Michael Butschek from the Salzburg Avalanche Warning Service.
“So the unfavorable situation is that we have compact snow on a cold, loose surface and that the snowdrift packages that are formed by the wind will be very prone to disruption. That means the risk of avalanches is significant,” warns the meteorologist. On the five-level warning scale, at level three, most skiers get caught in an avalanche.
A single ski tourer can trigger an avalanche
Up to 60 cm of fresh snow will be added on the Steinernen Meer, the Gosaukamm, on the Hochkönig and in the Tennengebirge. In addition, it is snowing heavily from the north and with stormy winds from west to north-west.
“Areas at risk are mainly in steep gullies and troughs and increasingly on eastern and southern slopes. This applies both in the steep terrain near the ridge and in the steep terrain further away from the ridge,” says Michael Butschek and warns that medium-sized to large slab avalanches can be triggered by a single ski tourer during the ascent.