Observation: Turnagain

Location: Cornbiscuit

Route & General Observations

Skinned to the first knob on Cornbiscuit (~3,000ft) in the late afternoon.

~70cm (28in, between boot and knee deep trailbreaking ) of new light dry snow from the parking lot up to to the top of the alders, then the amount of new soft snow on top decreased to about 45cm (18″) because I was skinning on ridge features.

No red flags noted, which was very surprising. Lots of point release dry loose sluffs seen in steep terrain all around, and maybe some signs of mid-storms releases, but those were buried in new snow and not prominent. I did not see any new glide crack releases around this area, but I did see them near Girdwood.

I was expecting a lot of wind effect, wind slabs, and other bad things but I did not find them. I dug hand pits at 1800ft, 2300ft, and 2900ft. All pits were 3+ ft deep, and very easy to dig with just one hand. I found a right side up snowpack with no/minimal slab cohesion. I did not perform any instability tests. The snow surface is 18-28 inches of very light snow that is ready for wind transport. There was no wind on Monday, but when it picks up on Tuesday I imagine that this will all change quickly.
I had minimal sluffs follow me on my ski down and only on the steepest rollovers (over 38deg).

I did almost run over a glide crack though, a good reminder that those things are everywhere right now. And they can be really hard to see in flat light and with rolling terrain. For example, there is still a glide crack at the bottom of PMS Bowl on Magnum that can be avoided by sticking skiers’ left of the center.

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