Detailed Observation

ObserverPWSC Rec Level 2

General Observations

35 mile 2280′ N-Aspect dug two pits to target the deep persistent slab and wind slab.

Pit 1 was in a more protected area and had a total snow depth of 160cm with 35cm of 3mm depth hoar at the base and 3cm crust/facet combo down 70cm.

Pit 2 was in a wind drift and had a total snow depth of 180cm with 20cm of depth hoar at the base, 5cm of facets down 160cm, buried flat surface hoar down 55cm and 30cm of wind slab at the surface.

Test were mixed and fairly unreliable with hard compressions and sudden collapse fracture character. Overall results showed strength in the mid to upper snowpack with poor structure at the bottom.

Propagation saw test results in Pit 2 were PST 35/125 End down 125cm and PST 25/135 End down 135cm.

These propagating test results targeted two deep persistent weak layers and help to explain why the snowpack in this area could still produce large to very large avalanches. Especially in thin spots with potential trigger points around rocks, cliffs or trees.

Temps stayed below freezing at -0.2C, overcast and lightly snowing in the afternoon. Surface conditions were softer than expected. We kept it simple, stuck to mellow terrain and avoided terrain traps or any overhead hazard.

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Weather Observations

Observed Avalanche Activity