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Observation: Cutler Ridge

Observation Date
12/1/2022
Observer Name
Kelly, Miller, Pressman
Region
Ogden » Ben Lomond » Cutler Ridge
Location Name or Route
Cutler Ridge
Weather
Sky
Few
Weather Comments
Winds were strong from the west at the ridgetops. Light to moderate from the south below 8000'. Above 8000' they were strong from the east and southeast. Lots of swirling and loading on all aspects above 7000'.
Snow Characteristics
Snow Surface Conditions
Faceted Loose
Wind Crust
Snow Characteristics Comments
Combination of supportable chalky wind pockets (that were great skiing for a few turns) combined with breakable wind crusts (not great skiing) and sand box facets where we were sinking to the ground with skis on.
Red Flags
Red Flags
Cracking
Collapsing
Red Flags Comments
Cracks up to 100' on stiff wind drifted slopes with 5-10" of wind slabs over fist hard faceted snow. Audible whoomphing and collapsing on the same slopes. Both on the ascent and descent.
Snow Profile
Aspect
Northeast
Elevation
7,900'
Slope Angle
30°
Comments
We got multiple collapses on this particular wind drift. Snowpit dug on a wind drifted section of snow where we observed cracking and felt collapsing on both the ascent and descent. Anywhere from 5-10" of 1 finger hardness wind slab over very weak fist hard faceted snow. Extended column test results at this location showed a very weak upper snowpack with clean shears and a noteable collapse of this weak faceted layer. These areas of wind drifted snow were easy to spot on the surface. With new snow they may be more difficult to find in the future. We avoided areas over 30 degrees with similar patterns of wind loading.
Video
Video of very small soft slab avalanche triggered on a road cut above the skin track.
Photo below of location. North facing 6400'
Today's Observed Danger Rating
Considerable
Tomorrows Estimated Danger Rating
Considerable
Coordinates