Observation: Big Cottonwood Canyon

Observation Date
3/31/2024
Observer Name
Dave Leydet and Nate Zacharias
Region
Salt Lake » Big Cottonwood Canyon
Location Name or Route
Silver Mine Meadows
Red Flags
Red Flags
Wind Loading
Cracking
Avalanche Problem #1
Problem
New Snow
Trend
Decreasing Danger
Avalanche Problem #2
Problem
Wind Drifted Snow
Trend
Same
Comments
We toured in the Silver Mine Meadows area of BCC today. We noticed a few wet loose avalanches on the lower sections (from ~7000' to 7600' elevation) of the skin track. These were relatively small slides in isolated pockets of steeper (~35┬░or higher) terrain. We dug a quick test pit at 8700' on a northwest facing aspect and conducted an ECT. ECTN6 at a density change (F to 4F) within the new storm snow approximately 9cm down from the surface. HS was 220cm with an HN (height of new snow over the last week or so) of 65cm. The snow was rightside up with F hardness in the top 4-5cm, 4F from ~ 5-10cm, then quickly transitioning to F-P harness below that. There is a meltfreeze crust located at ~65cm from the top of the snowpack (155cm from the ground).
The ridge at the top of the run showed signs of wind transport and deposition with wind pillows being deposited on the north facing portions of the ridge. This is in line with the forecasted winds from the south. The wind slabs were fairly soft (F-4F) and stubborn to trigger when stomping on small convexities.
There was some graupel coming down above 8700' although PI rates decreased throughout the day. The sun began shining hrough starting around 1:00pm.
Today's Observed Danger Rating
Moderate
Tomorrows Estimated Danger Rating
Low
Coordinates