Observation Date: 02/23/2018

Middle/Gem Lake basins, SE shoulder of Trapper Peak, NE face Trapper Peak, N and S aspects on East Trapper Ridgeline

The day started out very calm, with little/no wind and the sun breaking up some hazy clouds. 2-3″ of new snow from Thursday. Cold temps, but solar radiation on steep (and rocky) S and E aspects

No or very calm winds in morning (on E/W) ridgelines up to 8700′ and basins up to 9k) increased significantly in the afternoon. We were surprised by the settled powder to be found at higher and above-treeline elevations on all aspects. It didn’t last long, as NW winds picked up significantly, affecting areas above treeline with significant gusting winds (Into the 30s?).

New Snow: 0-3″

Avalanche Activity:
A few inches of new snow from Thursday/Thursday night was very reactive on old wind affected surfaces at the highest elevations, and saw a decent amount of solar heating, at least on steep S and E aspects, where a few natural sloughs were releasing (mainly above 9k). Didn’t see any crowns or debris piles from last weekend’s major storm cycle.

Other Comments:
Route note: took a sled to 6200′; a truck wouldn’t get anyone very far toward the Baker Lake TH right now

Observer: Ben Johnson