Observation: Hatcher Pass

Location: Marmot

Route & General Observations

We toured up Marmot from the Fishhook lot. A couple of our objectives were to check out moist snow surfaces and see how far into the snowpack the recent warm weather affected the snowpack in addition to looking at a small avalanche that occurred on a south facing rollover on lower Marmot, likely Monday afternoon.


Avalanche Details
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Avalanche Details

We dug a pit adjacent to a small slab avalanche on lower Marmot that likely occurred Monday afternoon.
We observed recent wet loose avalanches and one new small slab avalanche on the lodge run of Marmot that occurred within the past 24 hours.

Red Flags
Red flags are simple visual clues that are a sign of potential avalanche danger. Please record any sign of red flags below.
Obvious signs of instability
Recent Avalanches?Yes
Collapsing (Whumphing)?No
Cracking (Shooting cracks)?No
Observer Comments

There are numerous recent small to large wet loose and a handful of slab avalanches that have occurred since Monday. The most numerous are on southerly aspects, SE to SW. We also observed some wet loose on West aspects. Avalanches were observed at all elevations.

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

Unseasonably warm weather (41ยบ at 3,000' at 11:30 AM) that felt hot with a faint breeze on the Marmot ridge was a welcome cool off. ***Frostbite,IM, Marmot NO OVERNIGHT freeze since 9am 3/6

Snow surface

The snow surface has a significant melt freeze crust on sun affected slopes. (See photo in obs) As the day went on the crust softened and skied like corn however old tracks were still hard making for a variable surface any place that has been previously skied. The ski quality on north facing where the crust has not developed is significantly better.

The snowpack on steep south aspects was wet to moist (top to bottom of the pack)to the ground resembling an isothermal snowpack found in spring.. only it is a month or two early.

We found moist snow that varied significantly depending on aspect - westerly had a zipper crust with dry snow beneath in some locations and up to 4-6" of moist snow on top of dry snow in other locations.


On south facing slopes the snow was moist to the ground even in our 180 cm deep pit. On westerly the moisture only was about 4-6 inches into the snowpack and on anything north facing or north with a tilt is still dry on the surface.

Photos & Video
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