Location: Paradise Divide Area
Date of Observation: 04/15/2019
Name: Evan Ross
Subject: Ruby Range check In
Avalanche: Triggered several D1 to D1.5 loose wet avalanches on easterly facing slopes at the upper elevations traveled. Watched some snowboarders trigger a couple similar loose wet avalanches in the alpine.
There were plenty of natural and human triggered Wind Slabs from Sunday that where still visible. These mostly appeared to have thin crowns in the 4-5″ range, but some where in the 12″ range. They had some good propagation up to a couple hundred feet and had the potential to take you for a ride.
Saw 4, D2 Cornices that had released in the Rudy Range. One of which was observed on April 9th, while the others looked more recent.
Weather: Partly Cloudy as a general summary of the whole day. Moderate to strong westerly winds.
Snowpack: Any new snow that has accumulated over the last few days was definitely getting zapped down at the elevations traveled. Up at the lower benches of the Ruby Range above Irwin, recent snow had settled out to ~6″ on last Fridays Crust 4/12. At lower elevations there was closer to 0-2″ of snow sitting on that crust. Any current avalanche problems where related to this new snow. Despite the few clouds and strong winds, loose wet avalanches could be human triggered in this transitioning snow. This problem would have been easy to manage and I saw little natural activity. Checked a couple lower elevation sunny slopes on the way home in the afternoon. Those particular slopes were still supportive to a snowmobile and crusts had not fully broken down so there wasn’t really a loose wet avalanche problem.
In regard to the Wind Slab issue. I traveled on similar slopes as those that had produced Wind Slab Avalanches yesterday. Those slabs no longer appeared problematic and where transitioning into the Loose Wet problem. Maybe this issue would have still been problematic near or above 12,000ft say, where the snow was colder.