Axtell, NNE, 11,500′ Skier Triggered

CB Avalanche Center 2017-18 Observations

Location: Crested Butte Area
Date of Observation: 03/25/2018
Name: Tom Runcie

Subject: Axtell, NNE, 11,500′ Skier Triggered
Aspect: North, North East
Elevation: 11,500′

Avalanches:

Skier triggered slide in a small terrain feature. I skied over a rollover into a small concave chute. Slab broke just above me, about 10″ deep and maybe 30-40′ wide and pushed me through the choke of the chute. Was able to ski out of the slide. Debris didn’t make it even down to a flat spot. It ended up being pretty benign, but it got my blood pumping! 7 other skier runs in the same zone had no evidence of instability.

Weather: Thin high clouds, warm, light winds with occasional gusts.
Snowpack: 195cm depth, dug to about 125cm depth. Got into a very stiff 1F+ mid pack at about 80cm depth that went to 185cm depth based on probing. Low quality fracture within the storm snow at CTE5 and another just below at CTM 15. Very difficult shearing throughout the column.

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