Wet avalanche potential is more likely where the snowpack is thinner near highway 550 and in the La Plata's than to the east near Wolf Creek Pass.
Weather stations at lower elevations are showing a weak freeze overnight, but temperatures have been dropping since midnight. Snow/rain line is somewhere between 10,000-11,000 feet. This storm is forecast to continue throughout the day, but cool off bringing snow to lower elevations.
Rain on snow is always an interesting conundrum, but it normally takes quite a bit of water to get things going. We did have a report of a natural avalanche on highway 550 in the North San Juan zone last night on a steep rocky northeast facing slope. This morning we can expect many below-treeline slopes to be wet and saturated. It is a good idea to avoid steep slopes where you see the potential for wet avalanche activity. To assess this danger, get off your machine, click out of your skis, or unstrap your board and see how far your foot penetrates into the snow surface. If you sink above the top of your boot, you are likely on a suspect slope. Loose Wet avalanches normally start as a point release but gain mass and speed as they gouge into deeper layers and move downhill. As the cold front moves in, and rain turns to snow this problem will start to heal as the snow surface refreezes.
So far this morning 2"-5" of snow has fallen in the South San Juan zone accompanied by strong southwest winds. Near and above treeline your ability to trigger avalanches will increase as snow accumulates. This storm seems to be coming in "right side up," but we don't know exactly how the new snow will bond to last weeks dry snow. Avalanches in the new snow will be small to large, but as always even a small avalanche can be dangerous on the wrong slope. Avoid deep drifts of snow that rest above a firm surface and watch for cracking, as this is a sign that the new snow has become cohesive enough for you to trigger an avalanche.
Don't forget your trash bags and extra GORE-TEX its going to be a wet one.