Observation: Turnagain

Location: Sunburst

Route & General Observations

Standard Sunburst skin track to 2880′

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

Recent glide avalanches on Magnum and Cornbiscuit, obvious glide crack growth
Recent glide avalanche in Lynx Creek
Recent glide avalanches in Portage Valley

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

Overcast to obscured skies, light rain showers
Temperatures: 40Fs @ 1000', 30Fs at 3000'
Light to moderate easterly winds

Snow surface

1000-1800' wet, unsupportable
1800-2000' wet, supportable
2000-2880' 2-5" wet-moist snow over melt freeze crust


Dug at 2880' SW aspect 25 degree slope. Performed a Kool-aid test to look for potential layers where rain might pool in the snowpack and affect stability. Dug down 100 cm. Top 50 cm is wet melt-freeze grains and melt-freeze crusts. The bottom 50 cm is moist rounds. There was a layer 25 cm down of 4F wet melt freeze grains sandwiched between two crusts that failed in our post wetting compression test (CT 13 SC). Did not perform a ECT. If this structure is at all uniform across the slope this could be the setup for wet slab avalanches if there was a significant rain event. However this is only one data point and this needs more investigation. One of the questions for the weeks to come is when and if there will be a "shed cycle" in the Alpine.
No roller ball activity or wet loose sluffing while slope testing.

Photos & Video
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