Observation Date: 11/23/2013

West Fork Bitterroot Drainage

Blue Bird no wind – warm


New Snow: No New Snow

Snow Density:

Avalanche Activity:
Saw some south facing loose snow avalanches on very steep terrain

Observed Danger Rating:

Other Comments:
Still not much snow at elevation in the Southern Bitterroots. Booting until about 7000′. Sun was definitely affecting the snow surface today. Estimate a .5-1+cm crust formed where solar gain was strongest. Noticed surface hoar that was getting deformed by the sun on an exposed ridge at 7800′. Very small isolated wind slabs in the alpine likely formed by west winds in our location. Skiing was variable due to solar effects. Pockets of pow in shade. In protected areas with preserved powder snow was increasing in density with depth. Bottom Line: Early season conditions exist in the Southern Bitterroots in the West Fork drainage. Shallow snowpack with lots of hazards lurking below the surface made conservative skiing the right choice for our group. Felt like spring.

Observer: George D’Angelo