Location: Kebler Pass Area Date of Observation: 04/17/2016 Name: Zach Guy
Subject: Ruby Peak Aspect: South East, South Elevation: 11,000 ft
Avalanches: Some rollerballs and one natural D1 wet loose avalanche off of rocky, south facing above treeline. Weather: Broken skies, a few short pulses of S1 with no real accumulations. Calm winds, warm greenhouse feel. Snowpack: ~6″ of recent storm snow saw enough sun/greenhouse to moisten and even wet at the surface.
Location: Crested Butte Area Date of Observation: 04/17/2016 Name: ADB
Subject: Red Lady Glades Aspect: South East, South, South West, North West Elevation: BTL/NTL/ATL
Avalanches: Debris in bowl, but obscured skies prevented an assessment. Weather: Calm. New graupel didn’t impact via S-1 snowfall at NTL and ATL. Graupel left a trace in skin track. Snowpack: Last 36 hours: 4 to 6 inches of new snow on top of melt/freeze crust. ATL; crust is more apparent and once in NTL and BTL, becomes less so.
A hint of sun signficantly warmed the snow BTL, which didn’t impact stability.
Location: Crested Butte Area Date of Observation: 04/16/2016 Name: Zach Guy
Subject: Skier triggered slabs on Gothic Peak Aspect: North East, South East, South Elevation: 9,500-12,300 ft
Avalanches: On SE aspects near treeline, we intentionally skier triggered 3 soft slabs, ranging from 4″-12″ thick. They ran 1,300 feet on the crusty storm interface, large enough to injure you if you got caught. SS-ASc-R1-D1.5-I Weather: Mild temps. Overcast skies. S-1 with minimal accumulations through the day. Light west winds, with previous wind transport from the east. Snowpack: Below treeline, 4-6″ of moist new snow over a weak refreeze (2″ crust that was supportive to skis but unsupportive to boots, above wet grains)
Near/above treeline, the new snow was slabbier in places due to wind effects, with drifts up to 12″ thick from easterly windloading patterns, poorly bonded to a stout and supportive refreeze.
Location: Brush Creek Area Date of Observation: 04/12/2016 Name: Zach Guy
Subject: White Mountain obs Aspect: North East, East, South East, South, South West, West, North West Elevation: 9,100-13,400 ft
Avalanches: See photos. Observed about a 10 recent natural loose wet avalanches on northwest aspects near treeline, some of which gouged to the ground, D1 to D2 in size. A few small ones above treeline as well. Failure date unknown but I would guess this past weekend. No other significant activity observed, with good views up high. Weather: Broken skies, warm temps, light winds, a few brief periods of graupel. Snowpack: Decent refreeze last night: Surface crusts were ~6″ thick below treeline, 8-12″ thick near treeline above a wet snowpack. Above treeline, there was a few inches of recent, unconsolidated snow that was rollerballing harmlessly, and crusts below the new snow looked on track to stay frozen and solid through the whole day. Around 2 p.m., the snowpack had become trapdoor and unsupportive to skis below about 10,500 ft on N and W aspects.
Location: Kebler Pass Area Date of Observation: 04/11/2016 Name: dustin E.
Subject: Owen Cornice Fall Aspect: North, North East, East Elevation: 11,000-13,000
Avalanches: Saw a cornice that had fallen, likely the previous day, or early that morning, from near the summit of Mount Owen. The cornice dropped just to the lookers left of the prominent subridge coming down the center of the NE face on Owen. Looked as though the cornice popped out a slab and gouged to the ground in some areas. One block had fallen all of the way to the bottom of the bowl separating Owen and Purple. Still lots of overhanging cornices left up on the Owen ridge. Lots of wet loose activity within the new snow. Weather: Warm and partly to mostly cloudy with clouds hanging on Owen and Purple till around noon. Snowpack: Firm snow surface on alll aspects (firmer on solar aspects) with some shaded areas holding onto 5-6 inches of windblown snow from the past couple days.
Location: Crested Butte Area Date of Observation: 04/10/2016 Name: Zach Guy
Subject: Wet cycle below treeline on north half of compass Aspect: North East, East, North West Elevation: 9,000-10,000 ft
Avalanches: See video and photos. Evidence of natural wet cycle below treeline in the past 24 hours or so along hwy 135/Slate River Road corridor. About a dozen wet loose slides on NE aspects, one on NW and one on E, ranging from D1 to D2 in size, and about half of them gouging to the ground. 3 wet slabs on NE aspects below treeline, D1.5 to D2 in size, failing at the ground. Weather: Warm, scattered clouds, no precip, calm winds Snowpack: 2″ refreeze over an unconsolidated wet snowpack. Ski pen and boot pen quickly became knee to waist deep. One pit on NE aspect showed fist hard wet/very wet grains throughout, with free water pooling at the March 6th dust/interface about a foot deep in this location. 2 collapses in flat terrain
NE aspect BTL, Happy Chutes
NE aspect BTL. Happy Chutes.
NE aspect BTL. Happy Chutes
NE aspect BTL. Whetstone.
Cracking snow between debris piles
Looking downhill at wet loose debris pile
D2 debris pile below wet slab on Gibson Ridge
East aspect BTL. Gibson Ridge
NE aspect BTL. Whetstone
NW aspect BTL. Round Mtn.
NE aspect BTL
Wet loose and wet slab. NE aspect BTL on Whetstone
Wet loose and wet slab, Gibson Ridge. NE aspect BTL
Location: Kebler Pass Area Date of Observation: 04/10/2016 Name: EM
Subject: Wet snow obs Aspect: North, North East, East Elevation: 10000 -11500
Avalanches: Several minor point releases on east and north aspects. Nothing gauged in to older snow, limited to new snow only. Weather: In the morning cloud cover was in and out. The sun was out for much of the morning. New snow accumulations at 11500 were 10cm. Air temps were warm, just above freezing, causing snow on north facing slopes to become slightly moist even in shade by noon. Snowpack: 10 cms of new snow over the weekend. In one location at 11500,NNE facing, 33* slope had free water make it 30 cm down from surface. At 30 cms it refroze in to an ice lens. It was still approximately 20cm above our most recent dust layer.
Ski conditions were supportive through noon with minor loose and roller activity on north aspects. East facing terrain at noon had lost its support and was very wet.
Location: Kebler Pass Area Date of Observation: 04/08/2016 Name: Zach Guy
Subject: PM wet snow obs Aspect: North East, East, South East, South Elevation: 11,000-12,600 ft
Avalanches: None. Weather: Warm temps, calm winds, scattered to broken clouds, no precip. Snowpack: In the afternoon, boot pen into wet grains was shin to knee deep on low angle slopes near treeline, but wet loose problem appears to be becoming unreactive. No rollerballs on steep, slushy slopes facing E, S, SE. Hand pits on NE aspect ATL showed water had reached 2-5″ deep. Surfaces were beginning to slightly refreeze at sunset.
Location: Crested Butte Area Date of Observation: 04/07/2016 Name: Evan Ross
Subject: Moist snow and persistent slab Aspect: North East, East, South East Elevation: 11,200 NTL
Avalanches: Weather: Clear sky, calm wind, thin clouds starting to build just before sundown. Snowpack: Quick obs tour in the late afternoon. See media for specifics.
Aspect ENE, Elevation 11,200, Slope 36. Only the upper inch of the snow surface had become moist. The march 6th (lower dusty interface) continues to produce propagating test results on some slopes. ECTP 21 SP with block sliding off. Interface consisted of 4F 2mm rounding faceted particles. The grains themselves didn’t look to concerning, more concerning was the weaker structure surrounded by 1f hard snow.
Aspect: SE, Elevation 11,200, Slope 25. Moist snow down to an observed depth of 60cm. First ice lens was down about 55cm. Perc columns where above this ice lens but not below. Surprisingly boot pen was only about 10cm 80% of the time.