Tickets for the 26th Annual Fundraiser TONIGHT 6-10PM will be avaialble at the door for $45

Observation: X-mas Trees

Observation Date
Observer Name
Brett Kobernik
Location Name or Route
Spring City Canyon
Red Flags
Red Flags
Poor Snowpack Structure
Red Flags Comments
I experienced numerous LARGE collapses while breaking trail today. I bumped into some other skiers who had approached the same spot from an opposite ridge and they confirmed that they experienced the same thing.
Avalanche Problem #1
Persistent Weak Layer
Increasing Danger
Problem #1 Comments
I haven't been able to get into the more northerly facing terrain since the series of storms started on Thanksgiving.  I'm happy to report that it was too deep for easy travel today and I was not able to look at as many slopes as I'd hoped.  I'm not happy to report that I was able to get to a few slopes and was able to confirm my fears.  The old snow from Oct and early Nov is faceted and is now collapsing under the weight of the new snow plus a human trigger.  I experienced some collapsing in areas where there was only a few inches of this old faceted snow which kind of surprised me.
The take home is that it's suicidal to get onto any steep northwest, north and northeast facing slopes above 9500'.  East facing may be semi-suspect as well.  I'll get a better handle on that over the next few days.  Basically, stay off any slope where you find old sugary snow near the ground.
This stuff will most likely settle out eventually and won't pose a threat all winter.  The more storms we get, the faster this will happen but it's going to be a little while until we see these slopes stabilize.
Snow Profile
Slope Angle
Above is a snowpit profile.  The top two layers are the snow since Thanksgiving.  The bottom three layers are facets, a heat crust from late Oct/early Nov, and more facets below that.  Not a good setup.
The avalanche danger may reach HIGH on Sunday depending on how this next storm system shakes out.
Today's Observed Danger Rating
Tomorrows Estimated Danger Rating

Support the Avalanche Center through your purchases

Discount lift tickets
All proceeds from ticket sales benefit the UAC when you purchase your next lift tickets.
Need new gear?
Make your next purchase from our Affiliate Partners and the UAC will receive a portion of the sales.
Sign up for our newsletters, emails and daily forecasts to stay up to date.