Gothic Loose avalanche spectacle

Location: Crested Butte Area
Date of Observation: 02/12/2017
Name: Tim Brown
Subject: Gothic Loose avalanche spectacle
Aspect: North East, East, South East
Elevation: 9,400-10-400

Avalanches: Approximately a dozen natural avalanches (L-N-D1-2) ran on the east side of Gothic within a half hour period as the skies cleared slightly around 1pm. With limited visibility and debris running over cliffs, it is hard to say for sure that that these were loose rather than storm slab avalanches. However, they seemed dry, came out of very steep terrain and didn’t trigger any additional slabs on the aprons below the cliffs.

Also saw a SS-N-R2D1.5 in a cross-loaded shallow gully near treeline that looked a day old
Weather: Temps slightly below freezing all day, snowing lightly (S-1) with a few periods of S1, mostly overcast skies with a few short periods of high thin clouds and strong solar radiation, light winds from the south, no blowing snow observed
Snowpack: 25cm of moist storm snow is settling into a slightly stiffer slab than yesterday over a 5cm thick layer of moist 3mm clustered melt forms, but test slopes and compression tests produced no results on a SW aspect near 10,000′ near Avery. A similar storm slab was much more reactive to hand shears on an east aspect ~9,500′ near the trailhead where it was on a wetter weak layer of similar grains.

Gothic