February 13, 2016


South Fork Eagle River – Peak 4641

Red flags (obvious signs of instability):

  • Small, D1 human triggered wind slabs on isolated, wind-loaded terrain features
  • Pluming and wind loading observed on higher peaks (6000’+)


  • Mostly cloudy with light winds (at least around Pk 4641) and temps in the 20s

Surface conditions:

  • Melt-freeze conditions below ~2500′
  • Fresh, wind-affected snow above ~2500′ ranged from very pleasant, slightly wind-buffed powder to stiffer, but still carve-able, wind slab


Peak 4641, ~3250′, N aspect, ~35 degree slope, ECTX (handpit column tests to ~3700′ revealed a faceted layer in top ~2′ of snowpack that required moderate force to release).  Medium volume, but slow moving sluff on steep northerly terrain.  Stiffer, more wind-affected snow in big west facing bowl; snow was still carve-able, but grabbier and less smooth; no reactivity where we skied, but potential for wind and persistent slab problems exist.

4641 northerly aspect around where snowpit was dug:4641 chute

4641 ridge:4641 ridge