Observation: Turnagain

Location: Johnson Pass Area

Route & General Observations

We waged war with the alders trying to gain some elevation to get up into deeper snow. Some battles were lost and others were won, and in the end we only made it up to about 1500′ elevation. We found similar snowpack structure in the upper snowpack (NY crust, 1/10 crust), with loweer snow totals than we have seen in Girdwood and most of Turnagain Pass. There was a breakable crust on the surface up to around 1200′.

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

Clouds all day, with a brief window where it looked like the sun might poke through in the middle of the day. Heavy snowfall by the time we were riding out just before dark.

Snow surface

Breakable crust up to about 1200'. 10-16" new snow from the past week once we made it above the crust.


The upper snowpack has similar structure to the Turnagain Pass area, with two crusts in the upper pack. The main difference is that the snow totals from the past week are much lower in the Johnson Pass area than they are further north around Turnagain Pass. We saw 10-16" new snow from this week above 1200', with the 1/10 crust buried anywhere from 8-10" deep.

We noticed debris from a large avalanche that occurred yesterday on the west face of Pyramid.

Photos & Video
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