More mountain snow adds to increased avalanche danger

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CLEAR CREEK COUNTY, Colo. — Snow in the high country has prompted the Colorado Avalanche Information Center to increase its risk for avalanche danger.

The danger is heightened in the southern mountains but reaches the central and northern mountains too.

A CAIC forecaster said snow falling on a weak surface makes conditions all the more dangerous.

The alert primarily is for people who are hiking or traveling to higher elevations. It alerts people to check on conditions before venturing out.

“I think the biggest thing to be aware of is avalanche season isn’t over,” CAIC forecaster Mike Cooperstein said. “People can still trigger avalanches this time of year. People have been caught and carried in the last couple weeks in avalanches.

“We just want people to be careful and pay attention to what’s going on.”

Cooperstein said in some years, avalanche season has extended through July.

“The avalanche risk in lower elevation areas is definitely going down,” he said. “There’s just not a lot of snow in that area. But people are going into the mountains, especially to do 14,000-foot climbs, pushing it deeper and deeper.

“They definitely need to be careful and watch out for avalanches.”

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