Observation Date: 01/11/2015
Five Valleys Backcountry Ski Patrol members went for a long tour to upper elevation terrain near Bass Creek. North aspects above 6500 feet are skiing well.
Variable snowfall all day, with limited visibility. Temperatures felt to be in the mid to upper 20s.
Very calm, even at upper elevations.
New Snow: 3-6″
No observed avalanche activity. Loose new snow is sliding very easily on last week’s ice crust, and kicking off large sluffs is definitely a possibility on steep terrain.
Dug a pit on a 38* north-facing slope at 8000′. Snow depth 165 cm.
ECT results found last week’s storm snow is still reactive, though it requires more force and does not fail cleanly (ECT13, incomplete propagation). We could not get deeper layers to fail, despite our best efforts. 4F facets near the ground are still a concern.
Our primary concern was still the heavy storm snow deposited last week, although we kept a wary eye on our sluff on steeper terrain. New snow is available for transport, and any wind slabs that form will sit on top of a slippery ice crust.
Observer: Daniel Perret