Hot as Tomales

CB Avalanche Center 2020-21 Observations

Date of Observation: 03/05/2021
Name: Jared Berman, Zach Kinler
Zone: Northwest Mountains
Location: Anthracites
Aspect: North, North East, South East, South
Elevation: 10,000′- 11,500′


Avalanches: From a distance, we could see several small loose wet avalanches initiating below rock bands on steep east and southeast facing terrain in Elk Basin and Evans Basin near treeline.

In the Anthracites, one D1.5 natural loose wet was observed below treeline on a southeast slope while another was intentionally triggered on a south facing slope. Both ran into the basin locally known as the Playground (see photos below).
Weather: Clear skies, calm winds, and above freezing temperatures.
Snowpack: Drastically variable snowpack depending on aspect below treeline and near today.

On north and northeast facing slopes, probing revealed the average snowpack depth being 150cm deep with some areas as deep as 200cm. We measured 8″ of new snow on these slopes with 0.75″ of snow water equivalent. We did observe faceted grains at the old/new interfaced as well as small faceted grains at the snow surface.

On south and southeast facing slopes below treeline, the snowpack averaged 90cm deep. A hasty pit revealed moist snow all the way down to the ground with obvious signs of free water(vertical and horizontal ice columns)  through the upper half of the snowpack.