11th Annual Utah Snow & Avalanche Workshop Open and Motorized Sessions Oct. 27th.
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Observation Date: 
2/8/2018
Observer Name: 
Greg Gagne
Location Name or Route: 
Cardiff Fork
Weather
Sky: 
Broken
Wind Direction: 
West
Wind Speed: 
Moderate
Weather Comments: 
Mostly light, with some moderate gusts along the ridgetops.
Snow Characteristics
Snow Surface Conditions: 
Dense Loose
Wind Crust
Damp
Snow Characteristics Comments: 

Despite the warmth & wind, the snow surface is actually quite decent in places with 10-15 cms (4-6") of soft, spongy snow  on top of a supportable base. Wind & warm temps have stiffened the snow surface a bit, and could not get any loose sluffs to move. There was enough wind to cool the snow surface and keep the greenhousing to a minimum at the lower elevations.

Red Flags
Red Flags: 
Poor Snowpack Structure
Snow Profile
Aspect: 
Northwest
Elevation: 
9300
Comments: 

Route today was LCC -> BCC through Cardiff. Had not been in Cardiff in three weeks, and when I was last in there was finding very poor snowpack structure. Was looking today in thinner snowpack areas where I was expecting to find the weakest structure, but overall seeing positive signs:

- faceted layers are gaining strength, and showing signs of sintering and rounding (photo below)

- other than a small gradient in the top 10 cms of the snowpack, no temperature gradient.

The latter allows the snowpack to gain strength, although this happens slowly. Regardless, a positive trend.

Photo of snowpit structure with the exception of the top 10 cms, essentially no temperature gradient. (A gradient is defined as a difference of at least 1° C per 10 cms.)

Photos of faceted crystals showing evidence of rounding and sintering (forming bonds between the grains.) This is good!

Today's Observed Danger Rating: 
Low
Tomorrows Estimated Danger Rating: 
Low
Snow Profile Coordinates: 
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