The unusually high avalanche probability is the result of an unstable layer of snow buried deep in the snow pack. "The risk factor is quite high [right now]," said avalanche forecaster Karl Klassen. "It's a very unusual situation for the coastal area, and people might not be familiar with it. You don't see it, you don't feel it, unless you know exactly what you're doing." Several high-profile accidents in the backcountry this season have rescuers desperate to stop people from taking unnecessary risks.