Observation Date: 02/15/2021
Short tour off Snowbowl
Sunday was the beginning of our ascent into warmer temperatures after a cold artic air mass hugh out for a couple of days. Temps got up the mid teens. Winds on Sunday were Light out of the SW with scattered snow most of the day but we saw little accumulation. Monday was much calmer and temps were again a little higher in the low 20s.
Wind slabs and wind packed snow formed on a variety of aspects in unsheltered terrain. This lies under the snow from Sunday and Monday .
New Snow: 3-6″
large old crowns that look to have ran during the last big loading event.
We found anywhere from about 150-220cm of snow. On a southwest facing slope at 7300′ we found 150cm of snow that was supportable and soft. We had no results on the Jan 13th rain crust but did find lingering stubborn instability 114cm down within the old faceted snow near the bottom of the snowpack. This deep persistent weak layer was reactive enough in our PSTs to warrant caution as a deep slab would be devastating if one were caught.
On a SE slope at 7800′ we found different problem. Here, the problem layer was a thin layer of surface hoar about 4in above the Jan 13 rain crust, about 85cm down. Although we got sudden compression test results, both our ECT and PST did not show a tendency for fracture propagation.
We skied some 30-35* southern facing slopes and found good riding where the snow wasn’t wind affected.
Observer: George D’Angelo