Avalanche: La Sal Mountains

Observer Name
Craig Bigler
Observation Date
Thursday, March 24, 2016
Avalanche Date
Thursday, March 24, 2016
Region
La Sal Mountains
Location Name or Route
TuKno NE Face - Gravel Pit Lanes
Elevation
11000
Aspect
Northeast
Slope Angle
40
Trigger
Skier
Trigger: additional info
Repeater
Avalanche Type
Soft Slab
Avalanche Problem
Persistent Weak Layer
Weak Layer
Facets
Depth
12"
Width
60
Vertical
250
Comments

Forecaster comments:

Avalanche was almost identical to the accident that occurred there on March 9, right down to the weather conditions prior. On Tuesday, March 22, the mountains received 6-10" of new snow accompanied by moderate winds that shifted from SW to NW. The new snow drifted into the gully on top of the bed surface/remaining facets from the slide of March 9. Two skiers descended the upper slopes without incident and regrouped at the top of the steep convexity. Apparently opting not to descend into the gully, tracks indicate that they made a ski cut across the top releasing the pocket at a slightly higher elevation than the earlier slide. Second skier then followed across and they descended a lower angle, tree covered slope. 

This avalanche path has been very active this season, releasing twice naturally. On December 26, it fractured 6-7' deep and ran full track, or approximately 3000' taking out small trees going up the bank on the far side, and rounding the corner into the main drainage of Gold Basin. 

Coordinates

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