It's early winter and the snow coverage is still thin across much of the zone. The few areas that have decent snow coverage are unfortunately also the slopes with the highest risk of avalanches. The most suspect slopes are near and above treeline and face northwest, north, and northeast. You should either avoid these slopes entirely or make sure that a cohesive slab of snow isn't lying on top of sugary snow near the ground. Sounds of collapsing (whumpfing noises) and shooting cracks are sure signs of an unstable snowpack.
Today it is also possible to trigger an avalanche in wind-drifted snow. Strong northwesterly wind near the Continental Divide is drifting snow onto easterly slopes and forming slabs 1 to 2 feet deep. Pay attention to drum-like or hollow sounds underfoot and avoid slopes where you observe active wind loading.
The Friends of CAIC are hosting the 10th Annual CAIC Benefit Bash on December 2, 2017 in Breckenridge The funds from this event go to support the CAIC and these backcountry forecasts. It’s an event not to miss. For more information and to purchase tickets visit: https://adecadedeep.eventbrite.com.