Observation: Moab

Observation Date
01/7/2017
Observer Name
Brian Sparks

Region:

Location Name or Route
Tele Heaven
Weather
Sky
Overcast
Precipitation
Light Snowfall
Wind Direction
Southwest
Wind Speed
Moderate
Snow Characteristics
New Snow Depth
4"
New Snow Density
Low
Snow Surface Conditions
Powder
Red Flags
Red Flags
Wind Loading
Collapsing
Avalanche Problem #1
Type
Persistent Slab
Problem #1 Comments
As our group approached the top of the apron on tele heaven, the trail breaker heard a small wompf. We moved up slope about 30 feet and dug a pit to see what was going on. We found 205 cm total snow depth with about 10 cm of low density powder over a thick, dense slab (1f). There was and density inversion at 125 cm above the ground with about 15 cm of 4f small facets. An extended column test scored ECTP11 at 125cm with clean propagation across the column. We didn't spend much time investigating the weak layer but rather assessed our location and situation and made a plan for safe travel with out getting onto steeper train above and adjacent to us. Forecaster note: This clearly demonstrates the continued presence of persistent slab danger, though my own and other observer's snowpits have shown an increasingly strengthening snowpack. Spatial variabilty is key, the danger may exist on some slopes but not on others, making individual slope assessment necessary. This is what we call an isolated or moderate danger. But remember, a moderate danger can quickly become an extreme situation!
Today's Observed Danger Rating
Considerable
Tomorrows Estimated Danger Rating
Considerable
Snow Profile Coordinates