Observation Date: 03/02/2014
In the Rattlesnake N.R.A., 3.5 miles up the main Rattlesnake Road/ Trail,today at 1pm, I observed evidence of a small snow slide on the talus slope just above the road/ trail. This would be just 100 yards past the Frasier Creek bridge. The slide was about 100 feet wide and 50 feet long on the talus slope. It did not appear to reach the road/ trail. I had been in the same area on Friday afternoon about 4pm on the road, trying to pack a ski trail. The snow “womped” once while I was shoveling a path through the toe of several wind deposited snow drifts on the road. Today, the trail I packed Friday was invisible as the drifts were all back in place as if I had never shoveled out a path for the snowmobile for about 100 yards.
Snowing lightly, gropple like snow. Low visibility.
Calm winds today. Very windy on Friday, Feb. 28.
New Snow: 12+”
I saw nothing moving. The aspect was southeast. The elevation was 3900 feet. Steepness, yes, over 30 deg. ( I had no measuring tool.) 100 feet wide, 50 feet long. Must have been a natural trigger. It was at a very exposed windy spot where scoured snow is deposited by the northeast winds. No human tracks. I did not want to hang around any longer today than I needed to as my observation point on the Rattlesnake Road did not feel particularly safe as I observed the height and width of the massive mile wide talus slope above me. The slide was no more than a foot to 18 inches deep, it appeared.
I have been looking at this spot for many years as potential avalanche spot. I know Gene Thompson said to keep an eye on it years ago. But on all the trees still have their upslope branches. The talus slope is very rough near the bottom with 2-3 foot boulders sticking out above the smoother talus. I always thought of them as good anchors. The vegetation showed no evidence of recent slide activity.
Observer: Joe Kipphut