Avalanche: West Willow

Observer Name
Alan
Observation Date
Thursday, January 26, 2017
Avalanche Date
Monday, January 23, 2017
Region
West Willow
Location Name or Route
West Willow
Elevation
9600
Aspect
Southeast
Slope Angle
35
Trigger
Unknown
Avalanche Type
Soft Slab
Avalanche Problem
Persistent Weak Layer
Depth
unknown
Width
Unknown
Vertical
250
Comments
Guessing this was a natural trigger occurring sometime between late Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning based on new snow deposit in the bed. I was in the area on both Wed and Thur with very limited visibility for the most part, with a few pleasant exceptions. I first observed this slide while moving to the Park City Ridgeline at about 12:20 pm. I couldn't identify any tracks going into the slide area and was running short on time so decided to take a few pictures and move on. Based on a few quick handpits that I had dug in Beartrap Glades earlier, I am guessing the weak layer could have been facets and buried hoar that I had observed late last week. Interpolating from photos, it appears to have been about 1' to 2' deep at the crown and possibly more than 500' wide. It ran about 250' down to the flats at the bottom of the West Willow face. Skiing/riding on the northwest side of the ridge into Beartrap the last few days was the stuff dreams are made of. 30" of dry, settled powder with 4" to 10" of fresh cold smoke being deposited on top.
Comments
<p>Forecaster Comment: estimating this natural from Monday 23 Jan</p>
Comments
Sorry, the software inverted the photo and I've already spent way too much time on this.
Coordinates

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