Wind Slabs NTL

CB Avalanche Center CBAC Observations

Date of Observation: 02/11/2022
Name: Evan Ross

Zone: Northwest Mountains
Route Description: Traveled a variety of places, but primary headed strait to NTL elevations targeting wind slabs.

Observed avalanche activity: Yes
Avalanches: Triggered 1 notable wind slab over facets. East 11,300ft. The crown was 1 to 10 inches thick and released on well-developed near surface facets. There were 2 thin slabs stacked on top of each other with another layer of facets between them. Those slabs were pencil hard. The crown was around 30 to 40 feet wide and ran downhill the same distance. I was intentionally cutting this test slope. The avalanche didn’t release until I had buried my ski under the hard snow and was jerking things around to get it out.

The only other results were in very similar terrain in another location. Here the wind board was only 1 to 2″ thick and the resulting avalanches ran more like sluffs with little propagation over the very weak and faceted snowpack below.

While walking the dog in the morning I triggered a couple of sluffs with my hands off the side of the rec path. The dog was smart enough to not go over there.

Weather: Clear sky became partly cloudy. Warm and breezy. Didn’t see much for snow transport.

Snowpack: There still are some nice soft turns to be had out there. I headed straight from the trailhead to suspect NTL slopes and didn’t really muck around with anything else.