Friday, February 15, 2019

February 15 Snow Conditions.

        I am honestly not sure what to think about the current snowpack in isolated areas of the Ogden Zone.  I had notable pit results today with poor snowpack structure.  This worries me as we move forward into this storm.  With that said we already added a tremendous load to the snowpack without tons of notable natural avalanches on this buried weak layer.  I am not calling it a PWL yet because it has yet to produce many avalanches.

      Today I had ECTP SC 22 and 25 on a layer just above the Tom Brady storm rain crust.  This surprised me.  This layer formed last Thursday (Feb 7th) at the end of the Tom Brady storm when we received a light dusting of low density snow that did not get settled by wind or sun.  This layer was than preserved later in the week.  I do not know going forward how reactive this layer will be.  This layers reactivity did surprise me today though.

      Large avalanches in Willard Headwall could have failed on the same layer or just large well connected windslab.  Unsure due to poor visibility.
Bill Brandt Photo

Bill Brandt Photo


       Second part of the story is the extent of Hard D2/3 Windslab avalanches at Snowbasin today with explosives.  These avalanches seemed quite touchy and definitely could have been triggered by a human.  Some of these avalanches had crowns up to 4ft deep.  The other amazing part is how well connected some of these avalanches were.  Some connecting through rock bands similar to how a Persistent Slab avalanche would act.  

       The Third part of the story.   Impressive Wet/Wind Slab avalanches observed today.  I was surprised at how far these ran they were also quite destructive as imagined.  Also some D2+ Wet Loose avalanches.  This cycle is over now!

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