Location: Crested Butte Area
Date of Observation: 03/12/2020
Subject: Obs around Crested Butte
Avalanches: Small wet loose avalanche cycle in the warming storm snow. In very shallow areas below treeline a few gouged to ground. The cycle appeared confined to areas close to Crested Butte where temps warmed up more. In the high peaks of the Elks and Ruby Range, no evidence of a wet cycle. Also numerous shallow avalanches in steep terrain that ran during the 3/11 rain event, with debris piles buried by the few inches of new snow overnight.
Weather: Warm calm day. Felt greenhouse-like.
Snowpack: Tested persistent weak layers on northeast and southeast facing slopes near treeline. No problematic structures observed at this location. On the southeast-facing slope, recent meltwater has drained down through the upper snowpack leaving frozen vertical ice bodies, with frozen spreading ice lenses welding the upper weak layers to the slabs. The deepest ice bodies were around 70 cm from the surface. On the northeast facing slope, we dug not in a deep spot, not in a shallow spot, but a mid-slope site with about average depth. The snowpack is right side up, with no propagating test results on any faceted layers.