Observation: Turnagain

Location: Sunny Side

Route & General Observations

Second day ski touring on the Seattle Ridge side. Very active pit results. We kept slope angles low, quit our skin track several hundred vertical feet below our ideal goal, and skied many laps without incident.

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?No
Collapsing (Whumphing)?No
Cracking (Shooting cracks)?Yes
Observer Comments

Our group of 3 didn't witness it. A solo skier passed us while we were digging. We got concerning pit test results, so we caught up to him. As he was about to transition up onto a steeper slope, he stopped and said 'Just got some shooting cracks'. All of us traversed out from beneath that slope, and lapped the <30 deg meadows below.

Also, active wind loading was seen happening throughout the day on the slopes of Magnum, Super Bowl, Goldpan, Grandaddy, etc....

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

Snow squall for about an hour late morning, dropped 1-3". Then the sun came out. Wind rose and fell and switched directions throughout the day

Snow surface

Settled powder from yesterday, ski penetration was boot top, yesterday it was over knee. Allowed for more fun (fast) skiing on the lower angle terrain. Also, 1-3" of fresh snow fell late morning.


Probed depths along the skin track from elevation 900' to 1,100' : 65cm to 135cm. I could consistently feel 10-15cm of facets at the bottom, and then a stiffer snow pack for about 40-50cm above that. The variation in depth (+/- 70cm) seemed to only be in the top layer of softer snow.

We dug a pit at 1580ft. 25deg slope. ENE aspect. Height of snow 97cm

10cm facets with a crust above
1 finger-minus from 10-25cm
decomposing crust layer at 25cm
1 finger to from 25-55cm
Buried Surface Hoar at 55cm
1 finger-minus from 55-75cm
4 finger 75-90cm
Fist 90-97cm

1st - CT collapse on isolation in the basal facets. Continued, CT25 on the crust at 25cm
2nd - CT10 at the BSH at 55cm
3d - CT collapse on isolation in the basal facets. Continued CT2 on the crust at 25cm

ECTP14 on the crust, continued ECTP21 at the BSH.

Photos & Video
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