Route & General Observations
Went up the the SW Marmot mid-rib , climbed to top of Marmot, descended down spine and gully in Rae Wallace. Goal for the day was to assess sensitivity of last weeks persistent slab (formed by the wind). The weather was amazingly calm today, although evidence of strong wind is everywhere- especially mid and upper elevation on leeward aspects. Most of Hatch Peak, 4068′, and Gov’t look hammered (wind waves) from the wind.
Hollow sounding, supportable, stiff, windboard (not propagating) and breakable crust is widespread. In some locations where the wind has not affected the snow, the entire snowpack (1-3 feet) has faceted out. Some decent riding conditions exist on firm to soft spongy facets on all aspects.
Some locations may have thick enough windboard/slab to have formed a continuous slab capable of avalanching, but these locations seem to be isolated.
Many old avalanches observed up to D2.
No new naturals or human triggered avys observed today. No cracking, whumping, or collapsing observed.
No new snow.
Low winds in single digits 3/6 and 3/7.
Cold temps 4deg. F at 4500' at 1100. Warmed up to 9 deg.F by 1400.
Variable conditions all around. Wind slab, wind crust, recrystallized powder, minimal sun crust. Wind slabs are faceting out from cold weather and improving conditions.
overall: stability tests show- low energy, poor structure, stubborn nature, but still possible to trigger the basal persistent slab