Emmons Structure

CB Avalanche Center 2015-16 Observations

Location: Crested Butte Area
Date of Observation: 01/13/2016
Name: Evan Ross
Subject: Emmons Structure
Aspect: North, North East, South East
Elevation: 9,000 to 12,000

Avalanches:
Weather: Mostly clear with high thin clouds building by 11am. Calm wind. Very cold inversion already set up again while crossing the slate river at 3:30pm.
Snowpack: Near surface facets or weak surface snow is all over the place. Recent winds have buffed or stripped snow from north to west facing slopes near the summit ridge lines of Mt. Emmons.

Snowpack structure on a protected SE aspect, 32 degree slope at 11,200 was just crusts and facets for about 80cm without any slab or avalanche problem.

Snowpack structure in Redwell just after dropping into the bowl and where the slope becomes uniform below cliffs, NE aspect 35 degree slope at about 12,100, was a perfect and scary feeling persistent slab set up. HS 130, with an estimated 1f to 4F+ slab about 60cm thick over about 60cm of very weak feeling structure below. Still, many tracks on slope with no result. If that same structure exists on the steeper slopes in the area where there are no tracks, then they seem like they could still produce a persistent slab avalanche. Only had a chance to sample this one small area in this large terrain feature.

Snowpack structure in the north facing runout of redwell below 10,600ft was a simple weak, faceted snowpack with little layering remaining.