Observation: Hatcher Pass

Location: Friendship pass

Route & General Observations

Toured to Friendship pass from the IM parking lot starting at 11:30 am with AAS L2 avy class cohort. Clear skies overhead with light north winds. Throughout our tour we enjoyed the low-density surface snow and observed no major red flags except for some small dry-loose slides below rocks on steep east-facing slopes above our route. As we approached the pass, we probed snow depth with varying cover ranging from 190 cm at ~4500’ to wind scoured to ground at the top of the pass. Wind slabs were present at all elevations except the ridge top, but varied widely in depth, from 10 cm thick to a stout 90 cm. Basal facets were noted near rocks, particularly near the top of the pass. In general we felt that this snowpack has a weak structure with quite a bit of strength and low energy. Ski conditions continue to improve with the new snow creating good dust on crust skiing despite the stout wind slabs.