Snowfall in mountain parks poses avalanche hazard

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While Calgary and its surrounding communities are awash in rain, mountain parks are seeing snow. A lot.

Peter Lougheed Provincial Park has been hit hard over the past few days as cooler temperatures turned a forecast of heavy rain into a late spring snowstorm.

As a result, campgrounds and trailheads that would normally be crowded with hikers at this time of year are deserted.

And as you head north along the Smith Dorrien Trail, the heavy, wet snow makes for a tough ride.

The province announced that Highway 40b will remain closed between Kananaskis Lakes Trail and Highway House/Highway 541 due to avalanche risk, and will remain closed Wednesday.

The rivers and streams in the area are fast flowing, but if the snow fell as rain, they would likely rage.

The Barrier and Spray reservoirs in Kananaskis Country have also been lowered to accommodate all the extra moisture.

Plows were on Highway 40 and the road to Peter Lougheed Provincial Park to clear it for cars, but no one was in the parks on Tuesday.

The province announced that Highway 40 will remain closed between Kananaskis Lakes Trail and Highway House/Highway 541 due to avalanche risk, and will remain closed Wednesday.

Albertans are advised to avoid the area. The province continues to assess the situation and will provide more information in the coming days.

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