Observation: Willows

Observation Date
2/9/2019
Observer Name
Bombard
Region
Salt Lake
Location Name or Route
Willow Ridgeline
Red Flags
Red Flags
Wind Loading
Poor Snowpack Structure
Avalanche Problem #1
Problem
Wind Drifted Snow
Trend
Same
Problem #1 Comments
Vicious and unnerving winds, and swirling, especially above 9400 on the Willow Ridgeline. Once we passed "Little Willow," the winds got real hairy. Moderate winds gusting strong, just past noon, so the forecast bore out. Snow wasn't far behind. We gave cornices a wide berth, preferring the dependable stability of wind-blasted terrain, but none of them looked very toothy when we got a better look from safer positions. Two- to three-inch windslabs in Neil's Bullshit Bowl, but too low angle to be responsive.
Avalanche Problem #2
Problem
Persistent Weak Layer
Trend
Same
Problem #2 Comments
Complicated snowpack is right. We came across an abandoned snowpit (Fill in your pits, people! Please and thanks!) at the base of the Willow Ridge where the skintrack begins climbing (8750', SW) and took a look before cleaning up somebody else's mess. Found about a foot of fist-soft snow on top of crust sandwich, atop a buried layer of sugary facets about 3-4 feet down. Unreactive in the deep snowpack and low angle, and unrepresentative of our intended terrain, but surprising and interesting nonetheless. 
Comments
Evelyn's weather forecast was spot-on. Wish we would have hit the hills earlier in the day and avoided the whipping midday winds.
Today's Observed Danger Rating
Considerable
Tomorrows Estimated Danger Rating
Considerable
Coordinates

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