Kebler Pass afternoon obs

CBAC 2020-21 Observations

Zone: Northwest Mountains
Location: Kebler Pass to Anthracites ridgeline
Date of Observation: 11/14/2020
Name: Zack Kinler Eric Murrow

Subject: Kebler Pass afternoon obs

Aspect: North, North East, East, South East, West, North West

Elevation: 10,000 to 11,250

Weather: Decreasing cloud cover, no accumulating snowfall, and strong northwest winds afternoon. Air temps noticeably decreased throughout the tour. Blowing snow was common at all elevations; much of the transported snow near and above treeline was blasted into the atmosphere or loaded lower on slopes than usual.

Snowpack: It was difficult to find a good place to measure the new snow, but it was around 10 to 12 inches. Strong northwest winds pounded through much of the open terrain leaving soft, “breaker” wind board mixed in with some pockets of soft snow. Snow surfaces were disturbed by the wind on almost all slopes. Westerly and northwesterly alpine features were largely blown back to ground.

We traveled through BTL and NTL northerly slopes largely looking at the old snow from October. Snow depth was around 60 cm. In this area, NE and N facing slopes had developed a soft crust around an inch thick (~2cm) above the thin layer of weak snow at the ground. Tests did not produce propagating results. We did not experience any significant cracking or collapsing, but we did not travel through any features with significant previous drifting. The weak layer may have been a bit too thin to overcome ground roughness through much of the terrain we looked at.

Crossed a southeasterly slope at 11,200′ and found the new snow sitting on a soft crust around an inch thick.