Several old and new glide avalanches are readily visible in the Turnagain Pass
area (including the Girdwood valley and other surrounding areas). A glide
avalanche cycle is upon us.
Two pits were dug today on Corn Biscuit (2200′ and 2900′).
Pit at 2900′, wsw facing at 36deg, 125cm total depth, showed stubborn failures on density changes
due to old wind effected snow and around an ice crust 80cm below the surface. These did not propagate on ECT tests and were not a big concern. However, the first column dug failed at the ground/snow interface while cutting the column (see pictures). This is indicative of the glide avalanche problem.
Pit at 2200′, w facing 30deg, 95cm total depth, showed similar stubborn shears and no exciting
results (good news). All shears were on subtle density changes in the pack.
There is an ice crust approximately 30-50cm above the ground. The crust is
easily felt by sticking a pole in the snow upside down. All tests to date have
showed stubborn shears around the crust (more good news). HOWEVER, this does not
mean all areas have the same good news so ALWAYS keep the radar out for funny
business inside the snowpack.
In general: Glide avalanches were our #1 concern today.