Avalanche: Mt Watson

Observer Name
Michael Janulaitis
Observation Date
Sunday, April 24, 2016
Avalanche Date
Saturday, April 23, 2016
Region
Mt Watson
Location Name or Route
Mt.Watson
Elevation
11,400'
Aspect
East
Slope Angle
42°
Trigger
Natural
Avalanche Type
Soft Slab
Avalanche Problem
New Snow
Weak Layer
New Snow/Old Snow Interface
Depth
12"
Width
250'
Vertical
600'
Comments

I headed up to Mt. Watson today to do some skiing.  The first mile of the road had about 4-6" of new snow otherwise it was pavement.  On the way back it was totally melted out.  I expect the plows will move the end of the road up a mile tomorrow.  Once up in the Mt. Watson area it was I was greeted with 8-10 of new snow in the fields below the towing peaks.  Since the south wind that accompanied the storm had loaded the north slopes, I decided to skin up to the north east facing couloir on Notch Mountain in hopes of ski cutting a slide.  I ski cut the loaded rollover at the top with no results.  I headed back down the south side for some safe south facing low angle skiing.  After a few laps the skies began to clear enough to get a better view of the wind loading on Mt. Watson.  To my delight, there was minimal wind loading.  However, I noticed this shallow but wide soft slab avalanche that occurred yesterday.  Judging by the length that it ran, it was a slow mover and given the shallow depth manageable if in a narrower line such as the one I skied.

Coordinates

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