Observation: Hatcher Pass

Location: Marmot

Route & General Observations

We went for a short tour up marmot. The goal for the day was to see how winds from the past two days have effected the snowpack.

Red Flags
Red flags are simple visual clues that are a sign of potential avalanche danger. Please record any sign of red flags below.
Observer Comments

A avalanche was observed on the Ray Wallace, we believe that this avalanche likely occurred on 12/27. No collapsing or large shooting cracking were observed. Some small cracking occurred near ridge tops on a 1-2" pencil hard wind slab. the small slabs would not propagate further than a ski length. A large cornice fall was observed but didn't trigger the slope bellow.

Weather & Snow Characteristics
Please provide details to help us determine the weather and snowpack during the time this observation took place.

Marmot lot 2690' @ 10:00am, calm clear skies
A trace amount of new snow was observed on the skin track. A temperature inversion was present with marmot ridge top was significantly warmer than the parking lot.

Snow surface

The snow surface today was highly variable today. a thin crust was present right out of the parking lot but quickly disappeared. On leeward features a thin 1-2" windslab was observed this likely formed on 12/27. In other areas pencil hard windslab with a thin dusting of new snow could be found. Exposed vegetation and sastrugi was observed along most of the marmot ridge. Riding quality was surprisingly good despite the thin wind slab and poor coverage.


Overall the snowpack still has a poor structure, moderate strength and moderate propagation potential. ECTs and PSTs were reactive on the rounding facets 30cm below the surface and on the basal facets near the ground. Near ridge tops hard slabs have become well connected across slopes, and are worth paying attention to.

Marmot SW 3200'
HS 80 30°
ECTN 16 20cm from surface 1.5-2mm rounding facets
PST48/100 END 20cm from surface 1.5-2mm rounding facets
ECTP23 15cm from ground on basal facets
PST 45/100 END 15cm from ground on basal facets

Photos & Video
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