Using CAIC Products

The CAIC forecasts backcountry avalanche and mountain weather conditions for 10 Zones in the mountains of Colorado. You can find more details on the Zones here. The CAIC issues three primary products.

Backcountry Weather forecasts are issued for all zones twice daily, by 6:00 am and 1:00 pm. The Weather forecasts are for conditions near treeline for the next 36 hours.

Backcountry Avalanche forecasts are issued for each zone by 7:30 am daily. Forecasts include avalanche danger by elevation for Today and Tomorrow. The Forecasts may have up to three Avalanche Problems, with aspect elevation, sensitivity, and expected size described graphically. A paragraph of text provides additional details.

Forecast Discussions are issued daily, but not on a fixed schedule. Discussions have no fixed format, and may include analysis of relevant observations, technical details on the snowpack, and musings on the impact of future weather.

You can obtain products from the website. The CAIC uses Twitter daily for danger ratings, and as necessary for any midday updates.

The CAIC has five offices that issue backcountry forecasts. This is the schedule of products and issuing offices:

Front RangeSteamboatSteamboatSteamboatSteamboatBoulderBoulderBoulder
Vail and SummitBoulderBoulderBoulderLeadvilleLeadvilleLeadvilleLeadville
Grand MesaCarbondaleCarbondaleCarbondaleCarbondaleBoulderBoulderBoulder
North San JuanTellurideTellurideBoulderBoulderBoulderTellurideTelluride
South San JuanTellurideTellurideBoulderBoulderBoulderTellurideTelluride
Sangre de CristoBoulderBoulderBoulderBoulderBoulderBoulderBoulder