Date of Observation: 02/25/2017
Name: Steve Banks/ Mike Soucy
Aspect: North East
Elevation: 9,600 – 11,1000
Weather: Cold. -11 in the valley. Light winds, no observed minimal blowing snow but mainly traveled in protected areas. Mostly cloudy sky became overcast to obscured with intermittent S1 snowfall through the day. Localized winds blowing upslope (from E/NE) in the afternoon.
Snowpack: HS of 250-300cms throughout the tour! Boot pen 40 cms ski pen 15 cms. Good supportive snowpack. Test profiles at 10,500 and 11,000 showed buried surface hoar (Jan 19) 85 cms down, laying flat, rounding and unreactive to tests including pulling hard in shovel shears. Buried NSFs found 45 cms down. Suspecting this is due to melt layer crystallization from new snow over wet surface when it started snowing (2/22). This layer was more concerning but still had inconsistent test results, likely due to the lack of overlying slab. This wind is working on building that slab though. Lighter density snow in the trees near the ridgetop become slightly more slabby at mid-elevation where the wind had more effect. Below 10,000 where the trees clear out the powder skiing turned variable with breakable wind and sun crusts.
No avalanche activity noted, nor any cracking or collapsing.