March 31, 2013

Professional observation from Kyle Van Peursem:

Went up to Tequila Bowl across from Arctic Valley to see how the snowpack was holding up.  As expected, Monday’s foot of snow has been destroyed by the 50mph winds midweek.  Lots of alternating wind scoured/loaded areas with cornices forming on NW-N facing slopes.  Did not experience any signs of instability even with cutting some small cornices off further down the ridge.

This pit was dug below a convex roller just below the NNW facing ridge.  Pretty decent snowpack at 160cm (~5ft) with lots of wind packed snow in the upper snowpack. There is a decent knife hard wind board 40cm down with faceting rounds below that.  Stability tests showed good strength and high friction between the wind board and slab above, but there are signs of propagation potential as well.  Wouldn’t be too worried about this layer though as I’m sure there is a lot of spatial variability across the area.

The snow in the bowl was decent but punchy in places; hopefully spring will come soon to soften things up a little bit.

Tequila Bowl w:pit

AAC note: we’re still hoping for more winter storms!