Observation: Hatcher Pass

Location: Archangel Valley/Pinnacle North

Route & General Observations

Another day of partial sun, good stability and excellent skiing and riding conditions hanging in there in Hatcher Pass. Despite only having a trace to 1″ in the last 7 days and 3-4″ of snow 10 days ago, there is still boot top powder skiing and riding, if you know where to look. We headed out on snowmachines up Archangel Road and assessed some terrain on the northeast side of the Pinnacle.

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

No signs of instability observed:
-NO recent avalanches.
-NO whumphing, collapsing or shooting cracks.

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

Temperatures were in the low 20s to start our tour at 1030 and by 1500 in the Independence Mine parking lot, it was 31°. Calm winds today with clouds and partial sun throughout the day.

Snow surface

The forecasting area has only received trace to 1" of new snow in the last 7 days and 3-4" 10 days back. Despite this, there is still boot to knee deep powder skiing on polar aspects. We were able to find buried old and deteriorating wind slab and crusts on our north facing ski but these appeared in isolated terrain, intermittent and were not interacting with snow above. Surface snow remained cool and below freezing out of the sun.


The snowpack is increasingly stable. On polar aspects, we found mostly facets all the way to ground level. On some pole/boot tests, foot penetration was waist deep. We did not generate any dry loose sluffing on our ski descent of note. We did see some large chunks of cornice debris (several days to a week old, see photo) in the apron of one of the couloirs. It is unclear if this was a natural cornice release or intentionally released.

Photos & Video
Please upload photos below. Maximum of 5 megabytes per image. Click here for help on resizing images. If you are having trouble uploading please email images separately to staff.