Observation: Silver Fork

Observation Date
03/20/2018
Observer Name
Greg Gagne

Region:

Location Name or Route
Silver Fork from Alta
Weather
Sky
Scattered
Wind Direction
Southwest
Wind Speed
Light
Weather Comments
Just a hint of wind from the W/SW along ridgetops. Period of clouds move through about 1000 and evne squeezed out a few snowflakes! Skies were clearing when I was descending back to Alta at 1100.
Snow Characteristics
Snow Surface Conditions
Dense Loose
Wind Crust
Melt-Freeze Crust
Damp
Snow Characteristics Comments

Upper elevation NW through NE still holding dry snow. Otherwise snow surface is either crusted or damp.

Impressive amount of radiation recrystallization on the surface on many solar aspects. Also finding some weak snow on due north where the top few cms would sluff easily. Am expecting any weaknesses at the surface to deteriorate with increasing temps and rain/wet snow forecasted later this week. (That said, I think it's always worthwhile making a note where you find weak snow at the surface as it may be a weak layer with additional loading.) 

HS 2-3 meters above 9000' on northerly aspects in Silver Fork. 

Red Flags
Red Flags Comments
No red flags.
Avalanche Problem #1
Type
Deep Slab
Trend
Same
Problem #1 Comments

Deep, persistent slab remains a concern, but saw a strong & deep snowpack today where I was looking with over 2 meters in many locations.

Avalanche Problem #2
Type
Loose Wet Snow
Problem #2 Comments

Snow surface was just beginning to dampen when I was exiting at 1100. Overall not much evidence of wet activity from Monday.

Comments

Quick morning outing to Silver Fork from Alta. Been well over 2 weeks since I have been in this drainage, and wanted to get a sense of the depth of the snowpack. Overall snowpack looking strong and stable with 2+ meters. Few pits in the top 50-100 cms, and at best was getting ECTN (fracture initiated, but did not propagate) down 40 cms in a density inversion in storm snow from over this weekend. 

Today's Observed Danger Rating
Moderate
Tomorrows Estimated Danger Rating
Moderate
Snow Profile Coordinates